A Fylde model-maker’s scale version of the Royal Yacht Britannia so impressed officials at the ship’s base in Edinburgh that they have eagerly snapped it up to be part of the craft’s museum.
Ray Scrivens from St Annes spent three years building the 1-72 scale version of the ship which was launched by The Queen in 1953 and is now housed at Leith docks.
A long-time member of Blackpool and Fylde Model Boat Club, Ray has often sailed his model Britannia on Fairhaven Lake and other local waters and is proud that it has won various modelling awards, including best boat in show at the Blackpool Model Boat Show in 2011.
But after a move to a smaller house – and many compliments for his work from admirers – Ray and his family felt the time was right for the model ship to be found a new home and son Alex contacted the Britannia visitor attraction to ask if they might be interested.
Robert Gill, head of visitor experience at the Royal Yacht Britannia Museum, was so impressed that he travelled south to collect it in person and Ray even received a small sum for its acquisition, although he is quick to stress that a good home for the model is the priority.
“I will miss it but it is wonderful that so many people will see it now at such a popular visitor attraction,” said Ray 66, a retired motor mechanic who has been making models for some 35 years and a member of the Model Boat Club for more than 20.
“The ship is extremely detailed with models of The Queen, Duke of Edinburgh and the Royal Marines Band on board.
“It also has a model of the Rolls Royce Phantom, which The Queen took on board with her for official duties.
“It is partly furnished and is complete with functional lights.
“The ship is in working order and has sailed on Fairhaven Lake to the pleasure of many a spectator.
“It was truly a labour of love and I am extremely proud of her.
“But I am now extremely proud that my years of work and craftsmanship can be seen by anyone who visits the museum to see the real thing.”
Mr Gill said: “We were delighted to be contacted by Ray regarding his model of the Royal Yacht Britannia, and when we saw the craftsmanship, we were amazed. The level of detail and accuracy is quite astonishing.”