No bike trip in the Mull of Galloway direction is complete without a visit to Portpatrick and my ride west yesterday was no exception.
Not only did I see a new addition to the ‘curio’ shop display opposite the harbour entrance —
Yes the old boy by the door got new a ewe and a lamb and across the road in the harbour Portpatrick has one of the most technically advanced lifeboats in the RNLI.
The RNLB John Buchanan Barr —
I was fortunate to see her go out yesterday at what was very low water and she did seem to have very little clearance from the recently dredged harbour bottom —
She needed much carefull manouevering which entailed timely bursts of revs from her glorious ‘throaty’ sounding engines and noisy bow thrusters with lot’s of mud being churned up from the harbour bottom —
At £2.7 million she is an expensive boat and great care was taken by the cox’n to line her up with what must have been a narrow exit channel close to the rocks guarding the harbour entrance. Conditions couldn’t have been calmer but I still held my breath and forgot to sip my ‘latte to go’ from the new machine at the shop round the corner as he jockeyed her out of there from his seat uptop on the ‘Flying Bridge’ and disappeared into the brilliant afternoon sunshine..
The RLNB John Buchannan Barr was bequeathed to Portpatrick by the widow of a Glasgow doctor of that name. Doctor Barr had saved many lives during the last war and the boat was to be named in his memory.
She is an impressive sight and I felt fortunate to see her in operation in what appeared to be an unhurried practise run. Good luck to her and her crew in whatever the future has in store for them.
The chill March sunshine had brought quite a few bikers out and the recognised parking area was full but I managed to find space for the Tenere closer to the harbour amongst the cars. That reminds me – I must change that front tyre this week – she was handling like a mangey ol’ dog yesterday 🙂
Portpatrick Lifeboat -RNLB John Buchannan Barr