Grace's Guide To British Industrial History

Registered UK Charity (No. 115342)

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 163,480 pages of information and 245,913 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 147,919 pages of information and 233,587 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Appledore Shipbuilders

From Graces Guide

Appledore Shipbuilders is a shipbuilder in Appledore, North Devon.

1855 The Appledore Yard was founded in 1855 on the estuary of the River Torridge. Appledore Shipbuilders was founded in 1855/56 at the Richmond Shipyard when the first open building dock was constructed. In those early days vessels up to 2,000 tons dead-weight could be constructed.

The Richmond Dock remained the main facility until 1969/70 when the totally enclosed "Ship Factory" was constructed.

1963 The yard’s previous owners P. K. Harris and Sons sold it to the Seawork Group, one of the members of which was the managing director of Court Lines[1]. The yard was then renamed Appledore Shipbuilders Ltd.

1964 the yard changed hands again; the new owners were a syndicate comprised of Court Line and Alltransport. Tugs continued to be the main output of the yard along with sand suction dredgers, hopper barges and tank barges of differing sizes.

In the late 60s the yard made six coastal liners for the Royal Navy.

1970s The yard was modernised with a new covered hall enabling it to make larger ships and also work with steel prefabrication. A series of coastal tankers were built for various petrochemical companies along with sand dredgers, container ships and mini-bulkers.

In 1972 Appledore Shiprepairers was placed into liquidation which meant that all shiprepairing ceased.

In 1974 Court Line collapsed and the Labour Government took over the ownership.

1977 It was incorporated into British Shipbuilders in July. Following this a series of five mini-bulkers were completed along with gas and oil tankers, mini bulkers dredgers, oil rig supply vessels, a research ship and a naval armaments carrier.

1980s The covered Shipbuilding Hall was used to make over 70 large ships.

1986 Appledore took control of Ferguson Shipbuilders on the breakup of Ferguson-Ailsa to form Appledore Ferguson Shipbuilders which built 3 dredgers for ARC Marine in 1987[2]

1989 Appledore Ferguson was sold.

1989 The Appledore yard was acquired from British Shipbuilders by Langham Industries[3]

2015 Appledore Shipbuilders (2004) was part of Babcock International Group.

Appledore built modules for the two Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers, including bow sections.

2019 The Appledore yard closed in March after owners Babcock said its future was not "secure", despite the offer of a £60m Ministry of Defence contract.

2020 It was announced that the yard was to be reopened by new owners InfraStrata, and would be operated under the name Harland and Wolff (Appledore).[4]

See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. The Times Nov. 14, 1963
  2. The Times July 10, 1987
  3. The Times Jan. 27, 1989
  4. [1] BBC News website, 25 August 2020
  • [2] Wikipedia
  • British Shipbuilding Yards. 3 vols by Norman L. Middlemiss