Laid up shipping in the River Blackwater

Image courtsey of Mersea Museum

In the 50's and 60's many vessels were laid up in the Blackwater to make use of the deep water due to lack of commercial traffic.

At times up to 40 vessels were moored in the river all of which would be crewed by a few men or in some cases just a watchman.

Occasional vessels are still laid up although this practice now happens rarely.

One of the best known vessels to use the estuary for this purpose was the Ross Revenge better known as Pirate Radio Station - Radio Caroline that was berthed in the River from 1993 to 1995

West  Mersea  is sited on the north side of the River Blackwater and so was ideally placed to provide supplies and support to the vessels.

Mersea Museum website has some great pictures, a full history and lists A-Z many of the ships that were berthed in the River from 1925 onwards.

In view of the content at the Mersea Museum site no more details are provided on this site and anyone interested in this period of shipping should follow the link below.

To visit the relevant Mersea Museum Web Page please click here

To read about modern features on the River Blackwater visit our sister site  click here

On this site there are several pages about the River Blackwater including Thames Barges, Wildfowling, flooding, Coastguard, smuggling and Watch Vessels.

To view these pages return to the main history index by clicking the District History button at the top of the page.