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San Elena

Guest plesbit

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This boat from Richardsons was a hire cruiser that we had last year but we're beginning to wonder if we imagined the entire experience. Why? Because we had never seen the boat before or since our holiday. In fact, it was already becoming something of a joke by the end of last year and, having managed to go through the entire season this year also without seeing it, we really are getting confused.

I should add that we had hired other times as well. Two of the previous hire boats are now in private hands but of the two other boats which are still in hire fleets, Georgia Girl and Westinster Bridge, we see them all the time. I realise that there are two of each of those, and only one San Elena, but even if you halve the number of times we've seen either of them this season we'd still be pushing double figure for both. But not one sighting of San Elena. I should also point out that although we are based in Brundall we have been north several times this year, including one 10 day stretch. We also live only in Salhouse and frequent walk or cycle to the broad and can spend some time there just watching the boats. We also sometimes go down to Ranworth for a drink, or food, at The Maltsters and always go and see what boats are on the broad.

I would hazard a guess that we must have seen San Diego pushing 20 times and Tobago just as many. But not one single glimpse of San Elena. Was it a figment of our imagination or has someone else actually seen this boat?

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sorry to hijack your thread simon but my uncle is booking San Elena for next august i know there is a microwave on there but would the inverter be powerful enough to charge the kids PSP's :?: :?: :?:

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They do know this is a boat, don't they Jonny? The inverter on San Elena is at least 2kW so should be powerful enough to power a whole army of Playstations and the like. If I recall, there is a actually a games console onboard anyway, though they don't provide any games for it.

As a recent boat owner at the time of our hiring I took the liberty of dismantling anything that wasn't bolted down to find out how it worked. She has a bank of 8 x 110Ah deep cycle batteries in the aft cabin come galley area under one of the benches. That should provide enough juice to keep things going for a bit. However your uncle and his family will find the TV does not lend itself to being watched. She is fitted with one, presumably so they can say she is, but just try using it! It's in a built in cupboard in the corridor between the aft section and the front cabin - and it does work but good luck to them trying to figure out where to sit to actually see the screen.

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You can read about the meet on another page Jonny. The boat came into the broad, wandered around the moorings (all taken up) and then left. But it doesn't look any different from when we hired her. She's one of Richardson's platinum fleet, I think, so they'll keep her in good nick.

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I had a look at my hireboat photos (Indeed I am a bit of an anorak and have a room full of albums!! :o ) but oddly it seems San Elena also escapes my lense a lot too. Even stranger is its clear I see San Diego all the time too!

I always find that there's one or two boats that we see nearly all the time whilst out on holiday. I'm forever getting my camera out only to find its the same boat in a class that I've already got about 20 times that holiday!

Still... it would be nice to have chance to see some Norfolk boats again.... I have to last out until April now. Arrgh


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Has always been the way Dan. As a bit of a classic railways anorak (there goes my deepest, darkest secret!) the same is true of that. For example, the west coast main line from London to Glasgow, from the late 30's to the early 60's, had the majority of its fastest express trains pulled by a class of steam locos called the Princess Coronation's, though generally referred to as "Duchesses" for reasons I cannot be bothered to explain. Many, many books and so on have been written about these fine machines but really, what most people like, are photos of them doing what they are designed to do. There were 38 in total.

Were you ever inclined to look in such a book you would soon see that some members of the class almost never appear whilst others do regularly. As you can imagine, railways, particularly in the days of steam, attracted hoards of photographers the entire length of the lines on which they ran, many professionals too, and the archive of photos must run to millions. Yet some just hardly ever appear.

In 1962-64 most of them were withdrawn from service and replaced by diesels. In common with our usual attempt to save our heritage most were almost immediately broken up for scrap. One was bought by Birmingham City Council because it was called City Of Birmingham and stuffed in a transport museum. Two others were bought by Sir Billy Butlin and put in play parks at his holiday camps as climbing frames and curiosities but years later when policies changed the rotting locomotives were loaned to organisations who had more use of them. One of them came to Norfolk and was put on display at Bressingham Hall. Years later again it was sold to some enthusiast organisation who restored it to working order - indeed it pulled the Queen's Golden Jubilee Train in 2002. Its new owners decided to piece together a book on the history of this particular locomotive but the official archives contained almost no pictures of it. In the end they put out an appeal for anyone anywhere who had any shots of it from the days of steam to provide them for the book. A couple of years ago its owner told me in person what a hard time he was having getting pictures and could not understand how it managed to avoid the cameras when there were so many pics of all the others.

I guess it's just odd how these things happen!

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