Clutha’s

The Cluthas 

Clutha No1 to Clutha No 6 were built by Seath’s shipyard in Rutherglen in 1884 while Clutha No 7 to Clutha No 10 were built at Murray Brothers Westbridge End Shipyard innDumbarton in 1890 to 1891. The final two Lufthansa No 11 and No 12, came from Russell’s Kingston Yard in Port Glasgow in 1896.

The Seath built vessels were fitted with simple expansion engines manufactured by J G Kincaid in Greenock.Subsequently, they were compounded by the Clyde Trust’s own workshops. The Dumbarton built Clutha were fitted were fitted by engines built locally by Mathew Paul & Co. The Port Glasgow built vessels received compound engines, supplier by Muir & Houston of Glasgow from the start. 

The first four Clutha’s were 72 feet long, the next two were 100 feet in length, the first two of the Dumbarton batch were 76.5 ft while their third was 90 ft long and fourth was 87nft. The two from Port Glasgow were 81.7 feet. The beam of the first four was 13.1 ft, this rising to 14 ft on the next two. The following two were 16ft beam, this rising to 17.1 ft for the last four. A remarkable variation in a fleet often regarded as ‘standard’ 

The Clutha service was introduced on 12th August 1884 and, after a few setbacks , became popular . It remained operational until 30th November 1903 after their custom collapsed dramatically on the introduction of Glasgow Corporation’s first electric tramcars. 

No 1 became a messenger boat for CNT workshops and lasted until 1924

No 2 was sold to Denny & Co lasting until 1929

No 3 went to Grangemouth in 1903 and was scrapped in 1909

No 4 became a CNY inspection launch and lasted until 1947

No 5 went to Tottenham in 1903, the London Pleasure Boat Co in 1904 and the Admiralty in 1916. Her ultimate fate is not recorded.

No 6 went to Bo’ness in 1903 and Macduff in 1917 lasting until 1926

No 7 went to Hawthorn, Leslie on the Tyne, renamed Hebburn. Lasted until around 1940.

No 8 went also to HL, renamed Wallsend, Lasted until 1949.

No 9 and No 10 went to the Admiralty in 1903. No further information.

No 11 went to Bangor in 1904, Middlesbrough in 1919 and Milford Haven in 1936. She lasted until 1965.

No 12 went to Lough Neagh in 1904 the Ballachulish and to MacBraynes in 1911. In 1929 she was sold to Rose Street Foundry Inverness for scrapping but was resold to Alloa Shipbreaking  and was dismantled at Charleston. 

Stuart Cameron’s post Scottish Shipbuilding &  Engineering Heritage