My Girl, a pleasure boat that has been on the water in Weymouth since the 1930s is honoured by the Gunners!
My Girl saw service in the Second World War when, in 1939 she was requisitioned by the Royal Artillery to ferry Gunners, ammunition and supplies to the coastal defences. Her skipper at the time was Mr Ron Hill and together with his brother Bert they manned the small vessel throughout the war, carrying troops from the harbour to the sea forts along Weymouth and Portland. The little boat was painted grey at the time to camouflage her on these dangerous journeys.
In 1947 My Girl reverted to her previous role and with Ron as her skipper she remained on the water in Weymouth with many veterans having fond memories of the little boat. So much was her link to the Gunners that in 1994 The Royal Artillery Association presented My Girl with a pennant to be flown in recognition of her service to the Gunners.
This pennant was flown proudly for many years from the flagstaff as a reminder of her daring service.
My Girl was eventually bought by Peter Broatch who operates ‘Coastline Cruises’. It was then that she was taken out of the water for much needed restoration. After 3 years of hard work she was relaunched on the 9th April with a new pennant, presented by the General Secretary, Lt Col Vere Nicoll of The Royal Artillery Association.
He said: “It’s so special for us to be here commemorating something that is so important in our history. It just reinforces the link between the town, My Girl and the regiment.”
Members of The Royal Artillery Association with Peter Broatch of Coastline Cruises