…… not Boaty McBoatface.
As our blog followers will already know, we have been recruited to assist with the at-sea fitness for science instrumentation tests of the RRS Sir David Attenborough.
Although that is going to be a lot of hard work and a month at sea, it does carry with it some perks – the latest one being an invitation to the naming at the Cammell Laird ship yard on the Wirral.
Unfortunately, the bulk of the team are at sea deploying and recovering instruments into a canyon offshore the Congo, so the Boss went along and has reported back.
We like visits to ship yards as you always get to see something interesting, that is not normally evident once a ship is built and is, inevitably of an impressive scale, and this visit did not disappoint.
You can’t beat an impressively cast ship’s propellor blade – and these beauties are over 7′ tall.
Ship yards don’t normally have marquee either, but on a damp and chilly day a cup of coffee was most welcome, together with a chat with the great and the good. Less than a handful of scientists – the ultimate sea-goers on the Attenborough – were spotted though.
But the Fab Four did make an appearance – also very impressive castings over 7′ tall.
Its not clear until you start to get close how big the RRS Sir David Attenborough is, but its bridge deck, funnel and satellite domes appearing above the top of the construction shed started to give a good idea.
And up close it didn’t disappoint.
Getting to/from a pilot boat up and down a rope ladder is certainly going to be a challenge, as will be getting up and down the gang plank. It certainly has a high freeboard.
And after a few rain showers wetting the excitedly waiting crowd, Sir David and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge eventually did the honours with a rather small bottle of Champagne, which did smash for good luck.
And as is always the case ……. someone has even built a version in Lego ……..
…… and Sir David has been cast in bronze.
A good day out, and we’ll be on this in less than a year with a bit of luck, taking it for a scientific spin around the block.