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20yr Anniversary, The Raising of Bluebird K7

Posted: Mon Mar 08, 2021 12:07 pm
by Terminator
Its hard to believe its 20yrs today that Bluebird K7 made her return run! All be it at 6meters below the surface towed in by the recovery barge. I always remember that Paul and I had been asked to be independent observers to assist with her recovery with as much respect as possible. Reality dictates would later become a working mind set.

Bill Would often check things out with Paul and I and on this occasion the rudder of K7 was causing a towing problem with not being straight. Asking firstly if we thought it ok to tap it straight to aid the recovery. Yes we replied as not to do so may have caused problems to the recovery barge and endanger K7 herself!! A commercial diver went down but returned to the surface for a piece of wood before clattering the ruder straight. That was a considerate thing to do I though as I handed him the wood.

My how time has passed and who would have ever imagined we would be in the position we find ourselves in today? I for one can’t believe it has come to this after such a Triumphant return on the Beautiful Isle of Bute.

Re: 20yr Anniversary, The Raising of Bluebird K7

Posted: Mon Mar 08, 2021 1:18 pm
by Malcolm Ops
Foot and Mouth made travelling to Cumbria somewhat 'difficult', but with two independent observers embeded with the BBP an immediate past Chairman of the SRC was not needed on the lake shore.

Twenty years later and travel to Coniston is not possible. We cannot remember the final recovery of the major part of K7 with the BBP Crew involved in any of the village hostelries.

Thanks for opening this thread Novie.

Re: 20yr Anniversary, The Raising of Bluebird K7

Posted: Mon Mar 08, 2021 6:52 pm
by Mr Hannarack
Novie, in many respects those 20 years have gone by in a flash, but when looking at the subsequent 1,000’s of hours spent on returning K7 to her former beauty, all the meetings, bureaucracy, paperwork, planning, operating, that has brought the Project to where it is today, 20 years is also a very long time. But what a 20 years!

Memories of all those days on the deck of the Predator and on the salvage barge are still very vivid. In fact, my photo albums of those days in 2001 were pored over very recently with someone very close to me and the memories came flooding back.

I remember that incident of the turned rudder being straightened for the towing phase. I also remember the divers having to do another dive just after K7 had been freed from the lake bottom. The floor had burst down when she dismantled during the crash and every effort and check had to be made to ensure Donald was not with the craft before she was moved any further. A very tense dive for those involved and they took us aside to explain exactly the delicacy of their task when they returned to the surface. That encapsulated the professionalism, respect, and dignity towards all parties in this story.

Whatever the divergence of views that still exist to this day, the work was carried out with great skill, great delicacy and professionalism that could not have been bettered.

I was lucky to share all those experiences with Novie, my greatest mate, and with those who have become new and great mates.

Paul