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Perseverance IV immediately after launch in 1937 at Dapdune Wharf, Guildford.
NamePerseverance IV
OwnerWm Stevens & Sons
OperatorWm Stevens & Sons
RouteFrom Coxes Lock Mill, Weybridge through the Wey and Godalming Navigations and the Thames, to the London Docklands
BuilderGJV Edwards and Sons, Dapdune Wharf
Out of service1982
NamePerseverance IV
OwnerNational Trust
Refit1986–87, 1998
HomeportDapdune Wharf
General characteristics
TypeWey barge[1]
Tonnage32.25 long tons (32.77 t)[1]
Length74 ft (23 m)[1]
Beam13.66 ft (4.16 m)
Draught4 ft (1.2 m)[1]
Installed powerBow-hauled
Capacity80–90 tons

Perseverance IV is a preserved Wey barge, moored at Dapdune Wharf on the River Wey. She was the final barge to leave that surviving main boatyard on the river. She did so in 1966 and is on the National Register of Historic Ships under registration number 2080, outside of the National Historic Fleet.


Perseverance IV in 1934 (left) and 2010 (right) at Dapdune Wharf.

Perseverance IV was built in 1934 by G J V Edwards and Sons at Dapdune Wharf, Guildford – the tenth of eleven Wey barges made by the company.[1][2] The barge was built for the then owners of the Wey Navigation, William Stevens & Sons, and carried bulk wheat between the London Docklands and Coxes Lock Mill, Addlestone.[2] After more than thirty years working the route, she was rebuilt at Dapdune Wharf from 1964 to 1966.[3] She then went back into service, before being sold to another owner who used her as a cable-laying barge on the Regents Canal, where she ended her working life in 1982.[2][3]

In 1982, she came under the ownership of the Museum of London, and was rebuilt further times: in 1986/87 and 1998.[1][2][3]

She is one of only three remaining Wey barges in the world, and is the only floating example – the Reliance is permanently damaged and in a drydock at Dapdune Wharf, whereas Speedwell is in poor condition at the National Waterways Museum in Ellesmere Port.[4]

In future, the National Trust hope to use the barge for public boat trips up and down the Navigations.[4] Unfortunately, due to a lack of annual maintenance, she needs repair, and is £10,000 per year to maintain.[2] Consequently, the National Trust launched a 2011 appeal to raise £200,000 for the purchase and £300,000 for years of restoration.[4]

See also

Barges of the Wey Navigation


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Perseverance IV". National Register of Historic Ships. 7 April 2009. Retrieved 13 August 2011.
  2. ^ a b c d e "River Wey Barge – Perseverance lV" (PDF). National Trust. Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 September 2011. Retrieved 13 August 2011.
  3. ^ a b c "Trust aims to save historic River Wey barge". BBC News. 16 July 2010. Retrieved 13 August 2011.
  4. ^ a b c "National Trust launches Historic Barge Appeal". Inland Waterways Association. 1 August 2010. Retrieved 13 August 2011.