LMS Heritage vessel, the Kirkegaard takes to the waters of Ladysmith harbour. (Bob Burgess photo)

LMS Heritage vessel, the Kirkegaard takes to the waters of Ladysmith harbour. (Bob Burgess photo)

LMS volunteers complete restoration of Kirkegaard heritage boat

The restoration took nearly five years and over 7,500 hours to complete

After almost five years and over 7,500 volunteer hours, the Ladysmith Maritime Society has launched the Kirkegaard — a wooden heritage vessel restored by LMS volunteers.

The Kirkegaard took to the waters around Ladysmith’s harbour on April 20, 2021. LMS held a small celebration for the launch and has big plans for the Kirkegaard’s future.

“The boat will be accessible by the public,” LMS executive director Richard Wiefelspuett. “It’s joining our heritage fleet now on the water and it’ll be actively used in our tour boat program where we show the harbour to paying passengers.”

Up to 10 passengers will be able to tour around the Ladysmith harbour aboard the Kirkegaard. Historically, the Kirkegaard was a crew transport vessel and was used to bring workers back and forth from the Gulf Islands. It was built in 1947.

All of the restoration work was done using traditional materials and tools to preserve the Kirkegaard’s heritage elements. The LMS boat restoration team was awarded a Heritage Award from the Ladysmith & District Historical Society for their work.

RELATED: Star-studded Ladysmith Heritage Awards honour local commitments to heritage

LMS volunteer Jeff Reichert has been involved in the Kirkegaard restoration since the very beginning. He said that when LMS began restoration work on the Kirkegaard in 2016 it was far from being in ship shape.

“There were parts of the stern that you could take off by hand because the wood was so rotten. There were planks that actually fell off the boat, the fasteners were corroded and it was just the water pressure that held them in place,” he said. “I’m not sure how much longer she would have lasted in the water.”

When wooden boats take to the water it the wood adjusts and swells. LMS volunteers checked the boat for leakage and found only a little amount of leakage. A subsequent check on April 21 found there was no further leakage.

Reichert said that the entire volunteer group is proud to know that the Kirkegaard will once again serve the community.

“It feels really good. You not only get a tour of the harbour and the nearby Gulf Islands, but you do it on a historic boat,” he said. “I’m sure there will be a lot of people who want to be on this boat.”

Just Posted

The bow-legged bear was seen roaming 2nd Avenue on Friday, May 7 and again in Brown Drive Park on May 13. (Submitted photo)
Bow-legged Ladysmith bear euthanized after vet examination

CO Stuart Bates said the bear had obvious health issues

The Arts Council of Ladysmith and District is working with several Vancouver Island art councils on the Digitial Innovation Group to improve digital skills for Island artists. (Submitted photo)
Digital Innovation Group supports digital literacy for Island artists

The goal is to leverage digital skills to promote Vancouver Island as an ‘arts powerhouse’

B.C. Centre for Disease Control data showing new cases by local health area for the week of May 2-8. (BCCDC image)
Vancouver Island COVID-19 local case counts the lowest they’ve been all year

On some areas of Island, more than 60 per cent of adults have received a vaccine dose

Emergency service vehicles respond to motor vehicle incident at Highway 1 and 1st Avenue in Ladysmith. (Submitted photo)
Truck hits person using mobility scooter at northern entrance of Ladysmith

One patient was transported to hospital in stable condition

Ladysmith RCMP safely escorted the black bear to the woods near Ladysmith Cemetary. (Town of Ladysmith/Facebook photo)
Bow-legged bear returns to Ladysmith, has an appointment with the vet

Conservation officers transported the bear to a wildlife veterinarian in Nanaimo for examination

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

The warm weather means time for a camping trip, or at least an excursion into nature. How much do you know about camps and camping-related facts? (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: Are you ready to go camping?

How many camp and camping-related questions can you answer?

On Friday, May 14 at Meadow Gardens Golf Club in Pitt Meadows, Michael Caan joined a very elite club of golfers who have shot under 60 (Instagram)
Crowds at English Bay were blasted with a large beam of light from an RCMP Air-1 helicopter on Friday, May 14. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marc Grandmaison
Police enlist RCMP helicopter to disperse thousands crowded on Vancouver beach

On Friday night, police were witness to ‘several thousand people staying well into the evening’

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
Body of UBC professor found on Salt Spring Island, no foul play suspected

Sinikka Elliott taught sociology at the university

The first Black judge named to the BC Supreme Court, Selwyn Romilly, was handcuffed at 9:15 a.m. May 14 while walking along the seawall. (YouTube/Screen grab)
Police apologize after wrongly arresting B.C.’s first Black Supreme Court Justice

At 81 years old, the retired judge was handcuffed in public while out for a walk Friday morning

Queen Elizabeth II and Clive Holland, deputy commonwealth president of the Royal Life Saving Society, top left, virtually present Dr. Steve Beerman, top right, with the King Edward VII Cup for his drowning-prevention work. Tanner Gorille and Sarah Downs were honoured with Russell Medals for their life-saving resuscitation. (Buckingham Palace photo)
Queen presents Vancouver Island doctor with award for global drowning prevention

Dr. Steve Beerman receives Royal Life Saving Society’s King Edward VII Cup at virtual ceremony

Former UFV Cascades wrestling coach Arjan Singh Bhullar is now the ONE heavyweight champion after defeating Brandon Vera via TKO in round two on Saturday in Singapore. (ONE Championship)
Former UFV wrestling coach wins MMA championship

Arjan Singh Bhullar captures ONE heavyweight title, first Indian origin fighter to achieve honour

Astra Zeneca vaccine waits for injection in a Feb. 3, 2021 file photo. A Langley man has become the second B.C. resident to suffer a blood clot following an injection. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
B.C. man required emergency surgery after AstraZeneca vaccination

Shaun Mulldoon suffered ‘massive blood clot’ after jab

Most Read