Britannia's Weekly 'Snaps' 2018

Photography has always played an important role on Britannia. While she was in service, there was always a Yottie appointed, nicknamed 'Snaps', to take photographs of life on board the Royal Yacht.

In keeping with this tradition, we now have our own Photographer in Residence, Ruth Armstrong, who has been capturing our very own Weekly 'Snaps' - a collection of snapshots of life around the ship today.

April 2018

14 - 20 April: Carrot Cake, Flavoured Fudge and Royal Wedding!

As visitors tour Britannia’s five decks, many stop for a photograph next to the iconic Britannia Bell. During the Easter holidays, our young visitors had fun sitting in the Admiral’s chair in the Bridge. In the Royal Galley, the team baked delicious carrot cakes for the Royal Deck Tea Room and prepped Oyster mushrooms for an exclusive evening event. We welcomed the Blue Peter film crew on board, with filming taking place throughout the Royal Yacht. As we celebrated the 65th Anniversary of the launch of Britannia in 1953, visitors had the chance to look through our commemorative supplement, documenting Britannia’s 1953 Royal Tour. In the Gift Shop, we feature beautifully illustrated tins to celebrate the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

This week, Gary sanded the edges of a Perspex board before attaching the Royal Tour supplement. Tony secured a rope in place on the Verandah Deck awning, as Mark L. fitted a new filter for the No.6 Air Handling Unit. Martin repaired a scupper board, whilst Mark S. fitted beading around a pillar in the Junior Rates Dining Hall and Jay framed the new onboard staff Laundry.

7 - 13 April: Nautical Knots, Shortbread and Britannia Gin!

Whilst exploring Britannia’s five decks, visitors enjoyed trying on uniforms in the Petty Officers’ Mess and experiencing knot tying in the Royal Sailing Exhibition. Our Housekeeping team continued their excellent work in the Engine Room and the Bridge. The team in the Royal Galley were busy preparing for an exclusive evening event onboard. In the Royal Deck Tea Room, visitors can enjoy loose-leaf tea with a choice of scone, served with an Old Fashioned cocktail. In the Gift Shop, we offered samples of shortbread and Britannia Gin to visitors, as they finished their tour of Britannia.

Ian, Stuart and Dean S. worked on the flange for the Royal Galley drainage, whilst Mark L. fabricated the seating for the washing machines in the new onboard staff Laundry. Jay framed the new staff Laundry, as Gary fitted a new panel in place in the Junior Rates Dining Hall and Martin repaired a scupper board.

March 2018

31 March - 6 April: Easter Holidays, LEGO Britannia and Freshly Baked Scones!

With the Easter holidays in full swing, our young visitors enjoyed looking at the LEGO Britannia model, made with 40,000 LEGO bricks and trying on sailors outfits in the Royal Marine Sergeants’ and Petty Officers’ Mess. Our Housekeeping team continued their work, polishing in the Engine Room and Sun Lounge. The team in the Royal Galley prepared freshly baked scones and created a beautiful Easter display in the Royal Deck Tea Room. We were delighted to welcome former Royal Secretary and Correspondent, Dickie Arbiter LVO and his grandson, Raff Jones, on board. In the Gift Shop, we feature some of our novelty gifts, celebrating the upcoming Royal wedding of HRH Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on 19 May.

With the ship’s binnacle undergoing a complete refurbishment, Paul A. removed old base paint and prepped the binnacle for the fine paintwork and gold leafing to follow. Martin and Jay re-fitted a handrail on the Port side Verandah Deck. Mark L. worked on a base plate for the seating in the new in-house Laundry, whilst Ian carried out his monthly checks on the Activity Boat. Stuart fitted a temporary repair to one of the Royal Galley drainage pipes and Ian adjusted the hinges on the new gate on the pontoon.

24 - 30 March: Easter, Hot Chocolate and Cupcakes!

As the clocks change and the days become longer, we have been welcoming lots of visitors aboard in the lead up to Easter. Our Housekeeping Team have been hard at work, ensuring Britannia is maintained to the same high standards as when in Royal service. Visitors in the Royal Deck Tea Room were enjoying our Easter Hot chocolates, whilst the team in the Royal Galley were creating beautiful hand-crafted toppers for our special Easter cupcakes this weekend.

This week, Martin and Jay washed down the Starboard hull, whilst Mark S. sanded the wooden panelling from Royal Nore. External contractors, Greco-Tech, had to be called in this week to replace Britannia’s snapped halyard. Meanwhile, Martin from our Maintenance team, repaired a scupper board. Mark L. manufactured a seating for our in-house laundry machines and Stuart tightened the adjustable pipe clamp in the Boiler Room.

11 - 23 March: Easter Chicks and Cocktails!

Our Visitor Assistants have been busy answering visitors’ questions across Britannia’s five decks. Prior to the busy Easter holidays, we welcomed new Visitor Assistant, Claire, to the team. The Tea Room team have created a special ‘After Eight’ cocktail for Easter: Baileys, chocolate sauce and white crème de menthe. As the Easter holidays approach, Executive Pastry Chef, Stephen, has been perfecting beautiful sugar roses with gold leaf detail, delicate chocolate flowers and adorable Easter chicks to top our special cupcakes. The countdown to the Royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle has started! Our Gift Shop offers a selection of memorabilia in preparation for the celebrations.

Tony applied a black undercoat to areas of silver primer on the Royal Brow. Stuart worked in the Junior Rates Shower Room checking the drainage, whilst Martin and Jay fitted the repaired scupper boards on the Verandah Deck. Martin then changed a lightbulb in the Wheelhouse display in the Visitor Centre. Gary made a flexible vent for the punkah louvres and a connection piece. Mark S. added silicone to seal the joint and fitted the vent in place. On the pontoon, Jay and Ian measured the space for a new gate.  

10 – 16 March: Royal Brow, Cupcake Toppings and Britannia Bell!

Our Visitor Assistants give a warm welcome to all our visitors as they explore Britannia and are always on hand throughout the tour route to take photographs and provide assistance. Our Housekeeping team continued their excellent work as they cleaned and polished the portholes and Royal Brow. In the Royal Galley, Stephen, Executive Pastry Chef, began preparing cupcake toppings for this year’s Easter cupcakes, as Eryk, Kitchen Assistant, added sherry to the delicious Dundee cake mixture. In the Gift Shop, we have the beautiful Alex Monroe collection, featuring pieces in sterling silver with 22ct gold plating.

Ian carried our winterisation checks on the Royal Barge, as Mark L. tightened up the belt tensioner. Stuart vacuumed a water leak from the washing machines, whilst Tony prepared the dress ship flags for changing during the summer. Martin repaired a scupper board and Jay gave a Verandah Deck handrail a light sand, prior to varnishing, as Paul D. ran a cable to the Security Suite.

3 - 9 March: Snowy Scenes, Speciality Coffee and Dress Ship Flags!

The ‘Beast from the East’ hit us hard in Edinburgh last week, forcing us to close Britannia very unusually for two days. Our Maintenance team worked full out to clear the snow from the decks, ready for reopening. In the Royal Deck Tea Room, speciality coffees were served to visitors, as they warmed up from the cold weather. The team in the Royal Galley prepared fresh bread rolls for an exclusive evening event on board. With two seasons in one week, our Dress Ship flags were also put up this week against beautiful blue skies, all ready for Mother’s Day this Sunday.

Paul A. worked on preparing the Ship’s Binnacle for gold leafing, as Ian grinded and soldered the bow plate from the Admiral’s Fast Motor Launch. Gary manufactured and fitted panels in the Junior Rates Dining Hall, whilst Dean M. painted the Junior Rates Scullery. Dean S. painted drain pipe work from the Royal Galley and Ian repaired a silver candle stick.

February 2018

24 February – 2 March: Britannia Bell, Admiral’s Display and Fresh Oysters!

Despite the winter weather returning to Leith this week, we warmly welcomed lots of visitors on board to explore Britannia. Our Visitor Assistants took photos of visitors next to the iconic Britannia Bell, as Ali, Janitor, cleaned the Admiral’s display in the Visitor Centre. The team in the Royal Deck Tea Room made Bonnie Prince Charlie coffee and created a new recipe for our special Mother’s Day cocktail, a Pomegranate Martini. In the Royal Galley, fresh oysters and crabs were prepared for an evening event. In the Gift Shop, we feature beautiful pieces from the Alex Monroe collection, available in sterling silver with 22ct yellow gold plating.

This week, Tony cleaned the Royal Barge, as Martin cleared the bolt threads on the handrails. Tony and Martin re-fitted the handrails on the starboard Shelter Deck and port side Verandah Deck. Dean S. dug an access trench to the forward access gate, whilst Ian and Tony loaded the air compressor to take to Royal Nore. Tony washed down the hull and Solomon painted the perimeter fence.

17 - 23 February: LEGO Britannia, Freshly Baked Scones and Whisky!

As the English schools half-term holidays begin, our young visitors enjoyed the LEGO replica model of Britannia and trying on sailors outfits in the Royal Marine Sergeants’ and Petty Officers’ Mess. In the Royal Galley, Michal, Junior Sous Chef, made freshly baked cheese scones, as the team in the Royal Deck Tea Room provided table service to all visitors. Lynda Dalgleish, Head of Marketing, welcomed Carolyn Thornton and Chrissie the guide dog puppy, who is in training. Two new members of staff have joined the Britannia team, Donna Henderson, Finance Manager and Graham MacKay, Visitor Experience Manager. In the Gift Shop, we feature our 20 year old, limited edition, single malt scotch whisky, celebrating Britannia’s 20th Anniversary as a visitor attraction and exclusive evening events venue in Edinburgh.

Martin moved the newly varnished handrails back to the Shelter Deck, as Tony checked a life jacket. Ian machined the shaft couplings from Royal Nore, whilst Gary fixed strapping in the Junior Rates Dining Hall. Mark L. and Dean S. re-positioned a small lathe in the engineer’s workshop and Stuart painted in the electrical workshop. Martin repaired some scupper boards, as Gary removed a redundant bracket in the Junior Rates Dining Hall.

10 - 16 February: Pancake Day, Valentine’s Day and Cuddly Corgis!

With the February half-term school holidays beginning this week, we welcomed many visitors on board to explore Britannia. Ali and Ricky, Janitors, cleaned the Admiral’s display and adjusted the red carpet in preparation for an evening event. The team in the Royal Galley prepared Cullen Skink soup, served in the Royal Deck Tea Room, and beetroot tuiles for an exclusive evening event on board. This week, we celebrated Pancake Day with Sean, Demi Chef de Partie, making fresh pancakes to order for customers in the Royal Deck Tea Room. Visitors also enjoyed our Valentine’s Day Champagne cocktail, a Wild Kir Royale, served with home-made macarons. In the Gift Shop, we feature our new cuddly corgis, just in, and complete with their Britannia gold medallion and collar.

This week, Jay sanded and oiled scupper boards from the Verandah Deck, whilst Paul A. sanded and prepared handrails, prior to varnishing. Stuart fitted and riveted the non-slip tread in place on the gold level gangway and Ian continued work on the ring spanner, to enable removal of the shaft locking nut from The Royal Nore. Mark L. manufactured a rabbit’s head tool, used for welding, as Tony and Mark S. worked in the Junior Rates’ Mess.

3 - 9 February: Britannia Bell, Engine Room and Wild Kir Royale!

Our Visitor Assistants are always happy to take photographs of visitors as they tour Britannia's five decks. This week, a popular spot was on the Verandah Deck, next to the iconic Britannia Bell. Housekeepers, Mel and Eileen, continued their excellent work, as they polished in the Engine Room. In the Royal Deck Tea Room, Sarah, Food and Beverage Supervisor provided table service to visitors, as they enjoyed our freshly baked scones. The team in the Royal Galley prepared shallots, rosemary and caramel for an evening event. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, we feature our special Champagne cocktail, a ‘Wild Kir Royale’. In the Gift Shop, we show off our new range of Britannia rugby shirts in navy and red stripes, embroidered with Britannia’s crest in full colour.

This week, Tony worked on a new gold rope barrier for the Grand Staircase, as Paul A. continued to varnish the final pieces of the display units for the Gift Shop. Mark S. re-fitted the soap dispenser and air freshener in the Visitor Centre toilet, whilst Martin sanded a scupper board. Stuart measured and cut the non-slip tread for the lift tower gangways, before Dean S. riveted them in place. Ian assembled a jacking fitting to assist removal of the shafts from The Royal Nore.

January 2018

27 January - 2 February: Flavoured Fudge, Scallops & Britannia At Sea Collection!

Aboard Britannia, visitors toured each of the five decks, sampling delicious flavoured fudge in the NAAFI and enjoying hot beverages in the Royal Deck Tea Room. Linda, Housekeeping Team Leader and Ali, Janitor polished and cleaned in the Visitor Centre. The team in the Royal Galley prepared scallops and freshly baked bread rolls for an exclusive evening event. We were delighted to welcome Jennifer Armit, Receptionist & Office Administrator and Samuel Flett, Finance Assistant to the team at Britannia. In the Gift Shop, we feature the beautiful Britannia at Sea collection by D. John Wood.

Mark S. removed the mirror from the Visitor Centre toilets before Dean M. painted the walls. Jay worked on the top of a rope box as Martin removed the damaged sections of the scupper boards from the Verandah Deck. Martin buffed a brass end cap for a handrail, whilst Ian removed the grub screws from the propellers of The Royal Nore, in preparation for them to be collected for repair. Stuart cut the non-slip treads for the lift tower gangways and Ian manufactured a ring spanner, to remove the shaft locking nut from The Royal Nore.

20 - 26 January: Silver Pantry, Gift Shop and Burns Day!

Whilst touring Britannia’s five decks, visitors enjoyed watching Bloodhound’s reconstruction video in the Royal Sailing Exhibition and trying on sailors’ outfits in the Petty Officers' and Royal Marine Sergeants’ Mess. Housekeepers, Eileen and Mel, polished cutlery in the Silver Pantry, ensuring it is kept to the same standards as when Britannia was in Royal service. In the Royal Deck Tea Room, Ali, Bar Supervisor, served soup and sandwiches, as the team in the Royal Galley prepared lemon drizzle cake and sandwiches for the Tea Room and haggis, neeps and tatties for an evening event on board. In the onboard NAAFI, visitors sampled our Rabbie Burns fruitcake flavoured fudge. In the Gift Shop, we feature our beautiful window display and our Retail team offering visitors samples of delicious hand-made shortbread.

Tony and Ian measured the mast on Bloodhound, whilst Mark S, Gary and Paul A. prepared and varnished new wall display units and side panels for the Gift Shop. Martin glued wooden plugs to the handrails, before Jay sawed off the excess wood. Jay and Dean M. removed varnish from the handrails and passage way door. Stuart dismantled the lathe in the electrical workshop, before relocating it to the engineer’s workshop.

13 - 19 January: Petits Fours and 20th Anniversary Malt Whisky!

As the wintry weather arrived in Edinburgh this week, our Visitor Assistants warmly welcomed visitors for a tour of Britannia’s five decks. Our Housekeeping team were busy keeping everything shipshape. The Royal Galley team potted up Christmas puddings to Britannia’s traditional recipe, which will now be left to mature ready for next Christmas. They also prepared chocolate and hazelnut petits fours for an exclusive evening event on board. The Gift Shop feature our special 20th Anniversary Single Malt Scotch Whisky, along with a selection of all you need to know about whisky books.

Our new employees took part in our latest Company Awareness Day, having the opportunity to meet each Head of Department and learning how they all work together to make Britannia Scotland’s Best Visitor Attraction.

Mark S. replaced the door handle on a toilet door in the Visitor Centre, whilst Stuart lifted and re-laid the popped tiles in the Laundry. Jay prepared a handrail from the Starboard Shelter Deck for varnishing and added the brass end cap back in place. Nigel washed down the Quarter Deck and scupper boards on the Verandah Deck, as Mark L. removed redundant ventilation trunking from No.1 Fan Space. Tony washed down the Fo’c’sle whilst Mark S. worked on a new display unit for the Gift Shop.

6 - 12 January: Nautical Knots, Carrot Cake and Champagne!

This week, visitors toured Britannia’s five decks, learning to tie the perfect nautical knot in the Royal Sailing Exhibition and trying on sailor hats in the Petty Officers’ and Royal Marine Sergeants’ Mess. Our Housekeeping team continued their hard work in the Silver Pantry, with Mel and Eileen, Housekeepers, polishing the silver cutlery to the same standard as when Britannia was in Royal service. The team in the Royal Galley prepared and baked carrot cake for the Royal Deck Tea Room. Robyn, Waiter, pictured with a Jeroboam of Champagne after guessing the total number of visitors, closest to the final record breaking figure for 2017.

Jay retrieved the two fenders from Royal Nore as Tony and Mark L. re-aligned the plate at the bottom of the Laundry gangway. Ian worked on a new plinth and Stuart removed the No. 1 pump from the after Sewage Treatment Space. Dean S. grouted new tiles in the Royal Galley, whilst Gary repaired a door lock. Mark S. and Gary moved a completed display unit for the Gift Shop, as Jay and Martin took down some Christmas decorations. Gary made a new display door for the Bridge Chart Room. 

1 - 5 January: Happy New Year!

As we welcomed the first visitors of the New Year, it was a busy week on board Britannia. Our dedicated Housekeeping team were hard at work as Ricky, Janitor, pruned the hanging flowers on the Quayside, whilst Susan, Housekeeper, ensured that the lift tower, which allows fantastic accessibility for all between Britannia’s five decks, was spotless. Aaron and Gayle, Waiters, were busy in the Royal Deck Tea Room providing each customer with five-star table service. This week we also feature the gleaming Engine Room and the pristine uniforms of the musicians of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines. 

The New Year got off to a busy start for the Maintenance team too, as Ian checked dimensions on HRH Prince Philip’s former Royal Racing Yacht Bloodhound. Martin fitted handrails on the Royal Bridge as Paul A. painted fine details on to the cypher. Mark S., Gary and Ian built a display unit for the Gift Shop whilst Jay and Martin worked on the Quayside fence. 

See Weekly 'Snaps' from 2017 

See Weekly 'Snaps' from 2016

See Weekly 'Snaps' from 2015

See Weekly 'Snaps' from 2014

See Weekly 'Snaps' from 2013

See Weekly 'Snaps' from 2012

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