Page last updated2-3-2015
Built 1876 by  W & R Leaker,  Bristol. Iron Screw Tug. L76.7'.  B15.8'. . D8.1'.  59grt. 39nrt. 45nhp 2cyl 18"x18" steam engine by builder. Acquired 1877. Lost 1898. ON69403. 
1876 Owners William and Richard H Leaker, Bristol.  27-11-1876 Advertised for sale by auction at Bristol. 1876 Sold to John Bessone, Henry Castle, Charles Francis et al, Bristol. 1877 Acquired by William Watkins, London. 30-4-1894 Refloated SS Galicia, aground on Blyth Sand. 21-2-1898 Sunk near Nore LV following collision with SS Winsloe [894/1870].
Built 1852 by Money Wigrams, Northam, Southampton. Wooden Paddle Tug. L100'6''. B16'7''. D10.8'. 147 grt.  400ihp 2cyl 34"x48" side lever steam engine by John Stewart, London. Acquired 1852. Disposed 1855. Official No 24594
 4-1852 Completed and delivered to William Watkins, London.  1855 Sold to John T Corpi, London. 1855 Sold to owners in Constantinople.
Built 1855 by Thomas D Marshall,  South Shields. Iron Paddle Tug. L91.4'. B18.4'. D10.3'. 97grt. 60nhp 2cyl side lever steam engine probably by builder. Acquired 1862. Disposed 1875. Scrapped 1875. ON13748. Callsign LJGN
1855 Delivered to Peter Tindall Sr & Jr, Alexander Hunter & Edward Gregory, Gravesend.  13-7-1857 Towing S/V Splendid from off Deal to London. 1861 Acquired by John Brodie and Mary Croshaw, London. 1862 Acquired by William Watkins, London. 15-9-1865 Collided with barque Hanna near Nore L/V. 1875 Scrapped. Boiler reconditioned and kept and later fitted to Express.
Built 1889 by Westwood Baillie & Co, London. Iron Screw Tug. L85.8'. B18.1'. D10.7'. 94grt. 70nhp 450ihp 3cylTE 12.5"x18.5"x32"x20"s steam engine by J Stewart & Son Ltd., London. Acquired 1889. Disposed 1904. Lost 1905. ON96664.
1889 Delivered to William Watkins, London. 8-5-1891 Arrived Gravesend ex Ostend. 28-9-1892 Aground on Lynn Stonebank.28-2-1893 Towing collision damaged schooner Sam Weller ex Downs to London. 9-10-1893 Towing collision damaged barque Tenax Propositi from Sunk L/V to Regents Canal Dock. 1894 Reboilered.  7-1-1895 Assisting collision damaged barque Lochnagar off Holehaven. 16-3-1895 Towed SS Indra [broken shaft and lost propeller] Elbow Buoy to Gravesend. 11-9-1895 Assisted towung SS Lady Wolseley off Goodwin Sands. Later awarded £815 for service. 15-10-1898 Arrived Gravesend ex Dunkirk. 1-1899 Assistance to SS Amiral Aube, aground in Thames Estuary. Later awarded £600 for service. 1-12-1899 Damaged by SS Turret Cape whilst moored on Gravesend Buoys. 1900 Transferred to William Jr. & John S. Watkins. 15-6-1900 Arrived Gravesend ex Antwerp. 15-2-1901 Assisted freeing of tanker Rion [2186grt] aground on Goodwin Sands after the tug crews had assisted in dumping 50 tons of bunker coal overside and the tanker had jettisoned 1500 tons of oil into the sea!!! 16-7-1902. Assisted towing of barque Ardgowan, Southend to West India Dock, after vessel had been in collission off Dungeness. 10-1904 Sold to Charles Wills, London  and then to Bombay. 2-2-1905 Wrecked near Elephants Island, Bombay. 24-3-1905 Abandoned as total loss.
Photographer unknown
Built 1876 by  Hall Russell Ltd , Aberdeen. YN202. Iron Paddle Tug. L121'4". B21'6". D11'. 180grt.  100ihp 2cyl 33"x54" side lever steam engine by builder. Acquired 1886. Disposed 1889. Lost 1903. Official No 73663.
1876 Delivered to J. F. Gibbs, Ratcliffe London, named  Ben Lomond . 26-10-1877 Towed collision damaged brig Spheroid from Downs to London. 9-4-1881 Passed Lizard towing s/v Kapunda. 8-5-1883 left Portsmouth towing County of Aberdeen for London. 10-5-1884 Towed S/V Timaru, with foremast lost from Downs to London. 5-1886 Acquired by William Watkins, London,  and  overhauled in Scotland, renamed Burmah. 1889 Sold to Cia de Remolcadores del Cantabrico (mng Aznar & Astigarraga), Bilbao for £3000, renamed Bilbao. 1899 Still in existence at Bilbao, but at some stage converted into a yacht. 12-2-1903 Sprang a leak and sank 15 miles off Cies Islands, Vigo, with no loss of life.

Photographer unknown

Photographer unknown R Stanford colln

Built 1870 by London Iron Engineering and Shipbuilding Co.,Poplar, London.  cost £10,000. Iron Paddle Tug. L138.8'. B20'. D11.5'. 209grt. 600ehp 100nhp  2cyl 34"x54" side lever steam engine by John Stewart and Son, London. Two funnels abreast. Acquired 1870. Disposed 1913. Scrapped 1913. Official No 63623.
6-1870 Launched 1870 Delivered to William Watkins, London. 1870 Transferred to William and John Watkins, London. 19-5-1871 Towed fire damaged SS William The Third from Owers bank to Spithead. 18-6-1882. Awarded £300 salvage fee after towing sailing vessel Bruce [1146grt] off East Girdler sand. 8-5-1883 Departed Falmouth towing SS Hapsburg to Bremen.  4-9-1883 Towed severely storm damaged barquentine Margaret Caisor into Dover. 1-7-1885 1145 Passing Deal towing disabled SS Carrick Castle to London. 21-9-1887 Second mate James Morris was jailed for six months at Gravesend Petty Sessions for concealing 72lbs of tobacco, 11lbs of cigars and ten gills of spirits when the tug returned from Rotterdam. 12-12-1889 Towed Glasgow owned iron barque Mandalay [904grt] off Goodwin Sands after she had jettisoned 200 tons of railway chairs and sleepers. 1891 Reboilered and repairs. 25-2-1896 Transported Inspector Burke of Scotland Yard and his prisoners Dr Jameson and others from SS Victoria off Purfleet to rendezvous with police vessel Watch further up river. The prisoners were accused of attempting to raise an illegal military unit in South Africa and arrested under the Foreign Enlistment Act. 27-10-1896 Assistance to S/V Presiden Thier aground off Margate. Later awarded £250. 15-4-1897 Arrived Gravesend ex Antwerp. 14-1-1898 Assistance to SS Robert Adamson, damaged in collision and aground off Deal. 1-11-1899 Towing collision damaged barque Delta from off Dover to Deadmans Dock buoys. 1900 Transferred to William Jr. & John S. Watkins. 25-2-1904 Assisted salvage Canadian liner Lake Michigan which was ashore near Dungeness following collision. 1912 Laid up.  2-1914 Sold to British breakers. One of the most successful "seeking" tugs.

Photo Gould colln/TT
Photographer unknown. R Stanford colln

Built 1880 by Thames Ironworks Ltd, Blackwall. Iron Screw Tug. L80.5'. B16.9'. D9.6'. 72grt. 350ihp 2cyl 19"x19x18"s simple  steam engine by John Stewart and Son, London.  Acquired 1880. Disposed 1935. Scrapped 1935. Official No. 82785.
1880 Delivered to William Watkins, London.  2-2-1881 £200 salvage award for towing barque Mary Stewart off Shingles and to Millwall Dock along with tug Ben Ledi. 13-2-1881 Towed barque Verona from the Downs to London following collission. 3-1884 Engine compounded. 1888 Re-engined with 350ihp 3cylTE 13”, 19” & 33” x 18”s engine made by John Stewart & Son, Blackwall  and new boilers. 29-8-1892 Assisted towing SS Rion off Goodwins after vessel jettisoned an anchor and chain and 450 tons of coal. 1895 Reboilered. 2-12-1897 Towed into Gravesend by Burma with rope around propeller. 18-1-1898 Damaged in collision with SS Flamingo in Woolwich reach. 1900 Transferred to William Jr. & John S. Watkins. 4-7-1900 Towed German ship Helene away from Thames Haven jetty after the vessel containing 3000 barrels of naphtha caught fire following a lightning strike. 28-8-1906 Attending Channel swimmers in St. Margarets Bay. 1911 Reboilered. 1914 Transferred to John S & Alfred Watkins.  1917 Owners restyled to William Watkins Ltd.  1930 Laid up at Ramsgate. 5-1935 Sold for £110 to G Cohen and Sons Ltd., Canning Town for scrapping.

In wartime grey at Methil. Photographer unkown
Built 1925 by J P Rennoldson & Sons Ltd., South Shields. YN326. Steel Screw Tug. L90'. B22'. D10.6'. 157grt. 550ihp 2cyl 18"x40"x26" stroke  compound steam engine by builder. Acquired 6-1937. Disposed 5-1946. Scrapped 1963. Official No. 148586. Call sign MNLG.
4-1925 Completed as Tamesa for Albert Pattison,  United Steam Tug Co. London.  6-1937 Acquired by William Watkins Ltd., London, renamed Cervia. 1-6-1940 Under Capt. W H Simmons crossed to La Panne towing small craft to assist in Dunkirk evacuation. Took crew off s/b Royalty and went to assistance of destroyer Keith. Also picked up crew of barge Duchess, and 20 troops from a motor boat. 26-7-1940 Req by Admiralty. 2-8-1940 Stationed at Methil. 1941 Req by RN.  16-6-1943 Stationed at Londonderry. 5-12-1945 Departed Londonderry.  24-5-1946 Returned to owner. 29-5-1946 Sold to Ridley Steam Tug Co, Newcastle for £11,000. 24-1-1947 Renamed Monty. 4-1954 Sold to J H Piggott & Son Ltd, Grimsby for £17,500, renamed Lady Elsie. 9-1962 Renamed Lady Hazel. 9-1963 Sold to  Arie Rijsdijk Boss and Zoonen, Hendrick-ido-Ambacht for scrapping. 12-1963 Scrapping commenced.

Photo W Court.
Built 1946 by Alexander Hall and Co. Ltd., Aberdeen. YN709. Steel Screw Tug, Foremost standard class.  L105.2'. B27.1'. D11.7'. 233grt. 900ihp 3cylTE 16"x25"x42"x27"stroke oil fired steam engine by builder, eng. no 414. Acquired 1946. Disposed 1972. Official No. 180997. Call sign GDPM.
21-1-1946 Launched as Empire Raymond  for Ministry of War Transport. 30-4-1946 Completed and handed over to Townsend Bros. Ferries Ltd. for onward delivery. 5-1946 Sold to William Watkins Ltd., London,  for £36,000. 23-4-1947 Renamed Cervia. 1-2-1950  Ship Towage [London] Ltd. appointed managers. 26-10-1954 Capsized and sank whilst assisting P and O liner Arcadia at Tilbury. Skipper and four crew lost. 28-10-1954 Raised and towed to Ramsgate for repairs. 20.9.1968 Owners restyled as London Tugs Ltd., (same managers). 1973 Sold to Michael List-Brain, Sittingbourne for preservation at Medway  Maritime Museum. 1973 Sold back into towing to International Towing Ltd., Sittingbourne. (M. List-Brain, manager). 3-1983 Loaned for preservation to East Kent Maritime Museum, Ramsgate. 1989 Transferred to M. List-Brain,  and under continued preservation at Ramsgate.2020 Still at Ramsgate under restoration.

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CERVIA Engine Room 1960's
Photographer unknown
Photo Gould colln/TT
Photog unknown
Built 1884 by Maatschappij de Maas, Delfshavn, Holland. YN60. Iron Screw Tug. L121'. B22.1'. D12.9'. 219grt. 825ihp. 120nhp 2cyl 23"x47"x24"s compound steam engine by builder. Acquired 1884. Disposed 1912. Scrapped 1912. Official No. 89649. Call sign JSBN.
1884 Delivered to Willaim Watkins, London. 1885 Transferred to William Watkins & James M. Judd, Gravesend. 20-10-1885 Off Lizard. 12-11-1888 Assisted tow of abandoned SS Akaba from off Yarmouth to Hull. 1894 New boiler and 3cylTE 15”, 23” & 44” x 24” engine by John Stewart and Sons. 25-3-1895 Steering chains parted whilst towing Loch Katrine off Regents Canal Dock. Both vessels went ashore with the tug wedged between the ship and Victoria Wharf. 1897 Reboilered by Stewarts. 3-2-1892 Arrived Gravesend from Havre. 19-10-1892. Towed into Plymouth two lightships, San Borombou and Bahia Blanca, built for service in Brazil. After leaving Havre, temporarily rigged as brigantines to sail to South America, they had become unmanageable in the English Channel. 11-12-1894 Towed by Tasmania from off Aldeburgh to Gravesend with engine defect. 11-1-1899 Second mate Albert Honeywill, 22, of Catford drowned after being washed overboard in heavy weather about five miles off Falmouth. 15-6-1899 At Dartmouth, engineer fined for being drunk and disorderly.1900 Transferred to William Jr. & John S. Watkins.1904 New rudder and sternpost.  1905 Re-engined and alterations. 1912 Sold to French breakers.
Built 1872 by Wm. Hamilton, Port Glasgow. YN16. Iron screw steamer.  L204.8'. B26.4'. D15.8'. 573grt. 90hp 2cyl 24"x42"x30"s compound steam engine by Wm. Henderson, Glasgow. ON65667. Callsign KWMF.
1-1-1872 Launched. 1872 Delivered to Wlliam Watkins, London. 1875 Sold to Forwood Paton and Co., Liverpool. 1876 Sold to  Mersey SS Co Ltd. 1880 Sold to French owners, renamed Louis.  1881 Posted missing.  
The only cargo steamer ever owned by Watkins.
Photographer unknown
CYNTHIA after breaking moorings in Dun Laoghaire in February 1933. Photo from glass plate courtesy Tom Conlon ©
Built 1892 by J T Eltringham, South Shields. YN169. Cost £8000. Iron Hulled Excursion Paddle Steamer. L153.4'. B21.4'.  D10.3'. . 225grt. 90nrt. 98nhp  2cyl 23"x46"x36"s Compound Steam Engine by Stewart, London.. Acquired 1892. Disposed 1895. Lost 1933. ON99079. Callsign MPSG.
Ran for Watkins on London to Margate excursion trips. 1892 Delivered to William Watkins, London.  8-1894 Running excursions from Ramsgate to Deal, Dover, Walmer, Goodwin Sands and Boulogne under Capt. J. Jones.. 1896 Sold to C. E. Pollard, South Shields. 1897 Sold to H. Pollard, S. Shields. 1898 Sold to J. M. Smith, South Shields. 1899 Sold to H. C. Jones, London. 1904 Sold to Hastings, St. Leonards and Eastbourne S.S. Co Ltd., Hastings. 1907 Sold to Moville S.S. Co., Moville, Ireland. 2-1917 Req by Admiralty as Minesweeper. 24-5-1917 Returned to owner. 1927 Sold to Anchor Line, Glasgow. 1931 Sold to A W Hewitt,  Stewart & Hewitt Dublin. 25-2-1933 Broke moorings and sank in severe gale in Dun Laoghaire harbour after colliding with West Pier. Salved but did not return to service. Presumed scrapped.