Pleasure Steamers on the Severn

  • 9 Oct 2011
  • Severn and Canals
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'Crowquill' of the Berrow's Worcester Journal of 5 September, 1931 gave the following details of early steamers on the Severn. 'Until 50 years ago there was only one steamer at Worcester plying up and down the river. Then a second arrived, and in the closing decade of last century a third and fourth arrived. During the 1870's the number of people seeking the pleasures of a river excursion was small, and trips were limited to Saturday afternoons, and to Sundays and Bank Holidays. In the late 1880's patronage doubled, and trips were inaugurated on Thursday afternoons because of early closing, and afterwards, the half hoilday of shops and offices, liberated people who had been 'cribbed, cabined and confined'. 'Trips were run every afternoon in the week in the 1890's because the local patronage increased, and was supplemented by large numbers of passengers arriving by train from the Black Country. Such traffic grew enormously on Saturdays and Mondays in the years prededing the 1914-18 War, thousands arriving every week for organised or unorganised river parties. In deed the incomparable and restful charm of the river was so irresistible that people arrived on the quays by all kinds of vehicles (as well as trains) to venture up and down stream'.