Jim Meikle, Leith, writes:
"Can anyone give me information on the old 'Fair Maid' pleasure boat
that left from Leith Docks to sail up the Forth under the Forth
Bridge and back again?
Dad worked on the boat as steward, which meant my brother, sister
and I did well with free ice cream.
Meikle, Leith, Edinburgh: August 26, 2009
Walter Lyle Hume
Cowes, Isle of Wight. England
Thank you to Walter Lyle Hume, Cowes, Isle of Wight who replied,
giving more details about 'Fair Maid'
On the Clyde
MAID was one
of the smallest Clyde boats at 220 tonnes, with a top speed of 16
knots. She was built in 1886 as the PS Madge Wildfire. Apart
from the war years she served the Kilmun and Holy Loch areas."
On the Forth
"FAIR MAID moved to the Forth in 1927.
She was based at Leith, making daily trips to May Island, Bass Rock,
North Berwick, Aberdour, Kirkcaldy, Kincardine and Alloa. She also
made special excursions such as works outings."
World War II
"FAIR MAID spent World War II back on the
Clyde as a tender, after which she was broken up, in December 1945
Walter Lyle Hume, Cowes, Isle of Wight, England: August 27, 2009
The information about the Forth and Clyde above have been
taken from the commentary on the Scran web site, accompanying a
photograph of FAIR MAID.
The photo showed a large crowd boarding FAIR MAID at Grangemouth
Docks for a special excursion, around 1930
Scran ID 000-000-510-866-C.
Thank you to Andy Hall, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, for sending me a link to a page on a Clyde ship
building web site.
On the Clyde
page on the
Clydesite web site contains information about FIR MAID and
a photo of FAIR MAID.
She was only licensed to carry passengers between 1934 and 1941."
Andy Hall, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland,
Jim Meikle replied:
thanks for the information on the 'Fair Maid'. It's absolutely
fantastic to read the history of this boat which has memories for
I clicked on to the Clyde site and viewed the picture of the Fair
Maid, which was wonderful. I can see where my Dad stood on that
first day he sailed. I was very unhappy as I was not allowed
to go with him that trip."
On the Top
"On the top deck in my dad's days, 1936/37, a 3 piece band played
the music of the day on the way up the Forth and people got up to
dance on the deck."
"The other interesting news about this old pleasure boat was that it
was first named Madge Wildfire. When I was a young boy, I remember
my mother on many occasion looking in the mirror and if she did not
look as she would have liked she would say, 'I look like Madge
Wildfire', she would also say that of other women she came across.
I always wondered who this Madge Wildfire was. Then about 4 years
ago I decided to start and read some of the classic books I should
have read as a youngster. I began with Sir Walter Scott's ' Heart
of Midlothian ' and would you believe there is a character in the
story of dubious deeds, with wild, scary looks frequenting the High
Street called 'MADGE WILDFIRE'. Now I know what my mother meant."
Meikle, Leith, Edinburgh: August 29, 2009