Sunday, June 21, 2015

Tours, Tours, Tours Galore

I hope you’ve all had a great week; ours ended pretty busy here at the Quay after a fairly quiet start.

We had a crazy finish to the week as our Wednesday cruise ship was delayed until Friday due to weather and it made quite a splash when it got here. We had 4 busses from the cruise ship AND 45 grade 2/3s all hit in 2.5 hours. A huge huge thank you to Ron, Fraser, Gerard, John, Meghann, Keith, Brian, Anne E, Peter and Wanda for coming in to help. We put through nearly 200 people in that time frame and it would not have gone so smoothly without every one of you! Also a big thank you is extended to Ruby from the Fisheries museum for lending us one of her summer students, Kirstianna to work the elevator all morning.

Saturday was supposed to be much quieter than Friday with only a tour from Freedom Tours scheduled but just as that tour was about to begin John Miles Tours showed up and asked if they could have a tour as soon as the first was done. So thank you to Peter and Christine for coming in for those tours and Anne E for coming down to work the cash.

This week Ralph and Richard continued to work on replacing the rotten deck boards and the large hole that was on deck has shrunken tremendously as the new deck boards are placed.

Have a great week!


Monday, June 15, 2015

Happy Sunday! I hope you've had a great week in spite of how cold it is today!!

Big news down at the Quay this week is that all of our Facebook efforts paid off and we won the ECFM/Home Hardware Facebook challenge!! Meaning the Quay will be receiving 20 gallons of paint from Home Hardware. Thank you to everyone who voted, we received 992 votes and were 100 votes ahead of second place!! I've already picked out a pair of painting clothes.

Monday, Ralph and Richard returned and they will once again be here throughout the summer working on repairing the deck of the Ship. The fore mast and the main mast are now secured and there is also a large hole on deck as they have been tearing up the rotten boards all week.

Tuesday was a big day for Hector. We welcomed our second cruise ship of the summer and while waiting for the excursion busses to come in, a Grade 2 class from Frank H Elementary called and asked if they could stop in at12:30 so as the cruise visitors departed we welcomed 50 grade 2s on site. That would have been a fairly busy day had it stopped there BUT a bus of guests from the Ontario Presbyterian Church chorus came to visit in Pictou for the afternoon and many of their guests also stopped in for a tour. We made it through the day with many happy guests though. A huge thank you to Anne M, Keith, Brian, Wanda and Ron for helping out, staying late and keeping everything flowing smoothly throughout the afternoon.

Thursday, Halifax Independent School’s grade 5/6 classes came by for a tour and bite to eat. Thank you to Wanda and Meghann for helping with their visit. And Friday, we had our first Routes Adventures tour of the summer piped off the bus by Keith. A big thank you also to Carolyn M for coming in do to that tour, they seemed to have had a great time! And finally, today we had Mile Zero Tours come in and go on a tour with Mercedes. It was the first bus we’ve had from Mile Zero Tours and they really enjoyed it so thank you Mercedes! Thank you also to Meghann, Peter and Christine for picking up shifts this week.

Also I wanted to thank Brian, Rick, Scott, Stephanie, Terry, Gerald and Christine, who have all signed on for weekly shifts throughout the summer.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Week 3: Scallywags, Ship turning and visits from all over!

Hi there,
Lots of work was accomplished on good ol Hector this week! Monday’s turning was successful and gives a different look to the harbour when you're coming in off the Causeway.

We've been busy ripping up the old deck from the bow to the forward hatch so we can replace it with the new wood that arrived last week. 

The windlass has been primed and is ready to be painted, soon it will be brought back aboard! Also the topmasts and yards are back on site!! We'll be working on those in the coming weeks.

Wednesday we had our first unexpected bus which means the season has truly begun. We have begun what is called the "Clan of the Day", where daily a clan is picked and there are a number of prizes that may be offered, from magnets and bookmarks to free admission. 

This week we saw guests from 7 different provinces, 4 different states, Scotland and also Switzerland. We also started swabbing the deck daily (which, for those who aren’t sure, essentially means mopping the deck with salt water) this helps to keep the deck from rotting. 

Come see the scallywags swabbing the deck!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Week two: Travellers, Writers, Gaelic Classes and a Wooden Piper!

This week we welcomed the grade 11 Gaelic class from Citadel High School to the site. Later that day we were visited by Sian Lloyd and her husband Jonathan James. Lloyd is a travel writer for the Daily Mail’s, the "Mail on Sunday" paper and the Huffington Post. And to cap off the week, Scottish Sun writer Barry Graham and his wife Una Graham came for a visit and a guided tour. There was lots of activity and it's only the start of what's shaping up to be a great season!

A wooden piper approximately 6’5.5 in height has made his home inside the Quay. He was purchased off of Kijiji and has been a great addition to the crew! This piper was based off of a man who lived in Pictou County -- we’re conducting some background checks to make sure he is fit to volunteer here and once I get the inside story I will let you all know as well.

On Monday we turned Ship Hector around so the bow is facing Caladh Avenue. This is done for a number of reasons; firstly if the sun is only ever hitting one side it is very hard on the paint on that side and along with that, the side not receiving sunlight gets very damp and mildew starts causing problems.

The wood for the planking of the ship has arrived! As well as the rope for the lanyards which is black and made to look as though it is tarred. In the coming weeks you'll notice the progress as this begins to be replaced.

The holes have been drilled into the windlass and so we are working on painting it up and getting it ready to be brought back aboard. The pin board has been painted and is in the carving/rigging shop if you’re in and want to take a look.

The wood for the Samson Post is now in the yard and must be tapered and formed before it can be placed back on the ship.

One final note, Clan of the Days are now taking place down at the Quay. So, keep an eye on the Facebook and Twitter pages for your clan! On your clan day you receive one free admission per group and depending on the day you may receive some other clan merchandise.

The Twitter can be found at:
The Facebook:

Give a like or follow for more ways to stay up to date!


Welcome Aboard for the 2014 Season at the Quay!

This blog will be updated regularly as a means of keeping everyone near and far updated on what is happening with the Ship Hector, the first direct voyage carrying Scottish immigrants to Nova Scotia which just so happened to land in Pictou!

Whether you are an intrigued tourist, curious local, or have randomly happened upon this page. The Hector Heritage Quay has something for you this summer. We have a blacksmith shop, a highly active carpentry shop and we even have a carving and rigging shop where you may spot our carver, working on some of the pieces for the ship!

I'm not sure if you are aware but last summer we removed all of the rigging for maintenance that must be kept up. So it is our mission this summer to restore Hector to his fullest glory.

The first part of the masts have already been stepped and there are many many activities going on to ensure Ship Hector will be here for a long time yet. It's a great summer to come visit an active shipyard!

Just ask Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall who stopped by before the season opened!

Or if you are from the United States you could ask the American Ambassador Bruce Heyman who also stopped in on opening week!

It's going to be an exciting season at the Quay be sure to follow along!