The 'Duchess Doreen'

  • 17 Jan 2012
  • Severn Crafts
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The Duchess Doreen was originally named the ' Duchess of York' but her name was changed in the 1920's by her owner at that time, Mrs Bertha Huxter, and named after her daughter, Doreen.
She plied the Severn at Worcester in company with the 'Belle' for many years. They were almost identical in size and design, and it was said, came from the same boatyard on the Thames. Her teak hull had beautiful lines, and she was converted to diesel in later years. After lying up at Diglis for some time, she was brought for private use and left Worcester in the 1970s.

Correspondence concerning her change of name:
A letter to the Editor of the Worcester Evening News, 13.3.1967.

'About 1928, or about, the Canadian Pacific Line were about to launch a new liner. The launching was to be by the then Duchess of York, (the late Queen Mother) and the Company wanted to name the new ship after her. Because there was already a passenger vessel bearing the same name, the new liner would have had to have been christened something else, unless the two sides could come to some agreement. The Duchess of York was owned by Mrs Bertha Huxter, and she was paid a substantial sum of money in compensation to enable the Canadian Pacific Line to transfer the name to the new liner. Then Mrs. Huxter was faced with the problem of finding a new name for the steamer, and she decided on Doreen, after her baby daughter'.