Explore Your Archive

Explore Your Archive is a joint campaign delivered by The National Archives and the Archives and Records Association across the UK and Ireland. It aims to showcase the unique potential of archives to excite people, bring communities together, and tell amazing stories.

Historic Museum Ship MB Fountain holds comprehensive information relating to Historic Ships, maritime heritage and inland waterways with specialist archives focusing on WJ Yarwood and Sons Ltd, C Crawley Ltd (including fleet lists), as well as an extensive History of the Working Thames River along with information regarding the history and heritage of MB Fountain historic ship herself.

We will be taking part in #ExploreArchives by opening up and sharing the archives via our Twitter account @MBFountain

The Universal Declaration on Archives will celebrate its 5th anniversary on November 10!


MB Fountain is a signatory to the register to support the Universal Declaration on Archives

Harwich International Sea Shanty Festival 7th-9th October 2016


The Harwich International Shanty Festival was set up in 2006 to organise and co-ordinate an annual sea shanty festival over a weekend in October. Through concerts, ‘singarounds’, pub sessions, talks and workshops, the history and heritage of Harwich as part of the British seafaring nation is celebrated, promoted and perpetuated by local people and groups. This is unique for the county of Essex and is attracting audiences countrywide and beyond.

Here at MB Fountain we love the Roaring Trowmen who will be playing all weekend at this years festival – see ya there me hearties!


Museum Mashup


The Next Worldwide Mashup is September 28th, 2016. Join Museums across the nation and the world to experiment with museum experiences!
Watch out for the #museummashup hashtag or follow @MBFountain to join in on the day!

This years #museummashup is a chance for you to bring the Museum to us!

As a seafaring nation our maritime heritage is all around us everywhere in our everyday life

We want YOU to get involved & share our maritime heritage

The UK is an island with a strong connection to the sea, it’s ships and coastal communities – you can never be further away than 70 miles from the sea!

We want you to look around and discover the impact of our maritime heritage on our everyday life – From road names to local folklore – the story of our relationship with the sea is all around us, often ‘hidden’ in full view!

Our maritime heritage is also in our language – we talk about ‘all being in the same boat’ and caution ‘not to go overboard’ or ‘don’t rock the boat’.

We want to hear your nautical phrases from all over the country; let us know where you’ve heard it used so we can explore regional variations.

Tweet your pictures & #storiesofthesea to @MBFountain and we’ll create a special online exhibit showcasing and celebrating our maritime heritage!
Use the hashtags #museummashup #Maritime #Heritage & #StoriesoftheSea


The Great River Race

ay_117904863The Thames River Race runs 21.6 Miles, from Docklands to Ham. This year’s race is on Saturday 3 September.

The Great River Race is London’s River Marathon, attracting over 330 vessels. The Great River Race appeals to everyone with an interest in the river, from serious athletes who like winning, to those who enjoy laughter, fancy dress, and charity stunts.

It’s a great fun day out for both competitors and spectators.

Day of the Seafarer

Every year, June 25th is celebrated globally as the Day of the Seafarer, an official United Nations observance day. This year, once again, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) is asking people everywhere to show their appreciation for seafarers and their contribution to global prosperity.

We rely on people who work at sea for over 90% of our household goods as well as for essential lifesaving services. This year, IMO’s Day of the Seafarer campaign wants to celebrate seafarers and let the world know how and why seafarers are indispensable to everyone.

IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim put it best when he said: “this year, on June 25th, the Day of the Seafarer, we are once again asking people everywhere to show their appreciation for the seafarers that quietly, mostly unnoticed, keep the wheels of the world in motion.

World Oceans Day 2016

World Oceans Day is a global day of ocean celebration and collaboration for a better future.

This year’s theme is “Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet” and individuals and organisations across the planet are taking action for prevention of plastic pollution in our ocean.

MB Fountain will be participating in WAVE FOR CHANGE. Join people around the world as the #WaveforChange begins to swell!



MB Fountain is proud to support Find the Sea Families

Find the sea families

Funded by Trinity House, which has been looking after seafarers’ interests for 500 years, in partnership with four charities: Royal Liverpool Seamen’s Orphan Institution, Royal Navy and Royal Marines Children’s Fund, Royal Merchant Navy Education Foundation and the Sailors’ Children’s Society.
Find the Sea Families is a new campaign aiming to find sailors’ families who have hit hard times.
Each organisation offers different support but, typically, help will be available for buying home computers, tuition fees, school uniforms and caravan holidays, alongside ongoing financial grants.
Find out more here


Explore your archive

Explore Your Archive is a joint campaign delivered by The National Archives and the Archives and Records Association across the UK and Ireland. It aims to showcase the unique potential of archives to excite people, bring communities together, and tell amazing stories

We hold comprehensive information relating to Historic Ships, maritime heritage and inland waterways with specialist archives focusing on WJ Yarwood and Sons Ltd, C Crawley Ltd (including fleet lists), as well as an extensive History of the Working Thames River along with information regarding Fountain herself
Find out more here


Remembrance Sunday

Remembrance Sunday, which falls on 8 November in 2015, is a day for the nation to remember and honour those who have sacrificed themselves to secure and protect our freedom

During both world wars the Merchant Navy carried out a vital role, the Imperial War Museum provides A Short History Of The Merchant Navy discussing the essential role played in WW1 and WW2.

Read a personal perspective on the sacrifices made by the Merchant Navy as David Milloy tells his Grandfather’s story

Captain Cook’s Merchant Ships


An excellent insight into the merchant ships that carried Captain Cook on his adventures
Red Lion Books is hosting the author, Stephen Baines on 4th November 2015 for a talk about Cook’s eight ships

Northwich Heritage Open Day, Saturday 12th September 2015

Northwich is the home of WJ Yarwood and Sons Shipbuilders where Fountain was built

plaqueEstablished 1840, Yarwoods built over a 1000 narrow boats and ships including over a 100 vessels for the Admiralty

Fountain carries her original makers plaque and is proudly numbered 872

Northwich is celebrating it’s heritage on Saturday 12th September 2015 with a Heritage Open Day

Northwich Heritage Open Day. Lots of FREE events! Attractions and activities open 10am – 4pm

Visit the incredible Anderton Boat Lift built by Edwin Clark in 1875 to lift cargo boats the 50 feet from the River Weaver to the Trent & Mersey Canal and back in use after a £7m restoration

Merchant Navy Day, 03 September


Since 2000, Merchant Navy Day on 3 September has honoured the brave men and women who kept our island nation afloat during both World Wars, and celebrated our dependence on modern day merchant seafarers who are responsible for 95% of the UK’s imports, including half the food we eat.


This year Seafarers UK is campaigning for the Red Ensign, the UK Merchant Navy’s official flag, to be flown on 3 September on public buildings and landmark flagstaffs.
MB Fountain will be flying the Red Ensign on 3rd September 2015


2015 is European Industrial and Technical Heritage Year

Fountain is celebrating European Industrial and Technical Heritage Year by building international partnerships with other maritime heritage projects! Watch this space to find out more

Friends of Fountain Summer Meet – 4th July 2015 – Thames Historic Barge Rowing Race

Come and join Friends of Fountain for their Summer Meet and enjoy an afternoon by the River Thames celebrating the 40th Thames Historic Barge Rowing Race on Saturday 4th July 2015

Come and support the Thames Watermen and Lightermen rowing traditional Thames Barges while enjoying a drink and a snack with fellow Friends of Fountain

Please sign up as a Friend of Fountain for further details

LiberTeas on the High Seas

kettle-1445375-mMB Fountain will be hosting a tea party to celebrate the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta
Read more here & join Friends of Fountain for your invite

Work (and Fun) Days

friendsFriends of Fountain organise regular work days giving you the opportunity to become directly involved in gaining, sharing and preserving skills and knowledge relating to her restoration and maintenance. There are also regular talks and social events enabling members to meet as well as training opportunities and workshops

Please sign up as a Friend of Fountain to find out how you can get involved

Call to Entertainers/Artists

compass-rose-918888-mWe have a busy programme ahead and are putting together a portfolio of entertainers & artists who would like to get involved. We have a number of projects in the pipeline to include the opportunity of fully supported residencies. Please contact us at Friends of Fountain if you are interested in becoming involved

Museum Week 23rd – 29th March 2015


We’ll be tweeting as part of #MuseumWeek so follow our twitter account to find out more about Fountain and her future as well as her history and heritage

Talks and Workshops


We have regular talks covering subjects such as the history of the working Thames River and Yarwoods Shipbuilders, Northwich

We also run workshops covering anything from knot tying skills to caring for a heritage ship

New for Summer 2015!
We have teamed up with the International Guild of Knot Tyers – Solent Branch to provide free downloadable tutorials on the art of knot tying

Please join Friends of Fountain to find out more

May Open Day

Official logo of the European Maritime Day in colourAs part of International Museum Day and European Maritime Day in May, Fountain will be opening her decks to enable visitors to learn more about the industrial, cultural and technical heritage that she represents

We will be welcoming people aboard to learn about her history as a water barge as well as her future as a museum ship and the restoration project currently in progress to bring her back to her former glory.
Tickets are free but limited to ensure safety, please sign up as a Friend of Fountain to receive your free tickets

European Maritime Day Update

Ahoy! as we raise the flag to celebrate European Maritime Day
All heritage organisations, associations, entities and heritage vessel owners were invited to raise the pennant to celebrate European Maritime Day and to raise awareness and make visible the importance of the preservation and recognition of our amazing maritime and cultural heritage represented by historic ships.

Happy European Maritime Day!

Canalway Cavalcade 2nd – 4th May 2015 – Friends of Fountain Spring Meet

May Bank Holiday weekend is Canalway Cavalcade in Little Venice, London and we will be there!
A three day festival of all things boaty with family entertainment, stalls and, of course, lots of boats!

In the evening there is an illuminated procession where the boats will light up the night

Watch the video to get a taster of the fun from last years Cavalcade

Canalway Cavalcade Update

What a fabulous day and a big thank you to all those who made it so enjoyable!
Click on the pics below to see what we were doing courtesy of Fountain’s official photographer

Museums and Heritage Show 2015

We had a fantastic and informative day at the Museums and Heritage Show at London’s Olympia West.

Watch the video to see what we were doing!