Burton upon Stather Heritage Group
Rescuing the ramp…
The Sloop Phyllis
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Shipping Index

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Shipping in Burton

The Stather's Shipping Heritage

Shipping has always been a part of this riverside village's history and the reason for it's existence. The stather has been a port since at least Roman times. Goods have been loaded and unloaded at the wharf, brickworks and sandpit over the years. Ferries have crossed the river to the Garthorpe side and travelled along the river to Hull and Gainsborough.

John Wray & Son

One of the more notable shipping activities over the years was a large ship yard at the site which is now Kingsferry Wharf. John Wray & Son built ships on The Stather for more than a century from 1788 to 1892. During this time the yard produced a total of 341 ships, from large ocean going barques and schooners which travelled the entire globe, to local Humber sloops and fishing smacks for the Hull and Grimsby fleets which were booming in the late nineteenth century.

Pride passes The Stather

Cargo ship Pride passes The Stather in the evening sun.

We are compiling a database of the ships built at Burton, you can explore this in the Ship List section of the page. Research is on-going so we don't have records for all vessels as yet, some have more detailed information than others. We have featured some of the more notable ships for which we have a full story, these have a link in the Shipping Index.

Featured Vessels

  • The Barque Burton Stather - The largest, most prestigious and high spec ship ever built by the yard. A sparkling career that spanned the globe from London to South Africa and Australia to Hong Kong, carrying some famous names as passengers, before being lost without trace.
  • The Schooner Young Dick - Probably the most dramatic story of all our ships. A tale of exotic locations and bloody conflict within one of the more controversial trades of the late nineteenth century. Find out what made this Stather schooner an unforgettable part of Queensland history, in a story yet untold in her homeland, until now.
  • Bacchante aka Sigurfari - The only ship from our yard still in existence. This ketch rigged cutter survived fishing in the cold, unforgiving North Sea and North Atlantic for almost a whole century, not retiring until the 1970's. Now a museum piece in Iceland.
  • Indipup - Not one of Wray's ships of course, but this unassuming little lifeboat, a favourite at our events, has an unexpected past life as a veteran of The Cod Wars in the 1970's.