Patrick Khamula, Power Account Manager Malawi
Chauncy Maples is one of the ships that have been sailing on Lake Malawi for a long time. The ship was launched in 1901 as SS Chauncy Maples. She has spent her entire career on Lake Malawi and is regarded as the oldest ship afloat in Africa. After more than one hundred years' service she will be restored and renovated for use as a floating medical clinic to support the several million lakeshore dwellers along the Lake Malawi. The renovation of the ship is eagerly anticipated by the villagers along the Lake. This visionary and historic project will not only improve their health, but is also a focus of national pride for all Malawians.
Chauncy Maples Malawi Trust, a UK charity which is renovating the 19th century ship, after raising over a million pounds for the charity work. Mota Engil which is running Malawi Shipping Company, joined Thomas Miller as a co-sponsor and has agreed to renovate and thereafter manage the ship, with a donation of EUR 2,000,000 towards the first 10 years' running costs.
Caterpillar and Barloworld Power have donated the engines and generators, while ZF, one of the world's leading makers of gearboxes, have generously donated the gearbox and engine controls.
The ship was stripped, and its superstructure is being renovated. The picture below shows the ship under renovation and repainting at Monkey Bay Shipping yard.
Subsequent developments to be reported in the next newsletter.