THE iconic Waverley kicked off her new sailing season in fine style today with excited pupils from schools on board the packed paddle steamer as she departed Glasgow for Greenock, her first port of call of 2024.

Among the hundreds of passengers were youngsters from Aileymill Primary in Greenock, who won a trip 'doon the watter' following a competition which ran in the Glasgow Times, Greenock Telegraph, Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, Cumnock Chronicle, Helensburgh Advertiser, Ayr Advertiser, Largs News, and Clydebank Post. 

Helensburgh Advertiser: Pupils from Aileymill Primary, Greenock, are set for their trip on the PS WaverleyPupils from Aileymill Primary, Greenock, are set for their trip on the PS Waverley (Image: Colin Mearns)

Primary five pupils Jaxson and Cole, both aged nine, enjoyed a morning in the sunshine with their classmates as they cruised down the Clyde.

Cole said: “I haven’t been on it before. I was just watching the water pretty much. It was good.”

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Jaxson added: “I was just sitting at the railing looking at the water trying to see dolphins.

"A bunch of my friends said they saw some."

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People queued to board the paddle steamer at a very busy Custom House Quay to enjoy the first Clyde cruise of the summer.

The vessel has undergone maintenance and refurbishment work worth £700,000 in the past six months to prepare her for another season of travelling around the UK.

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Today was the first of 138 timetabled days of service for Waverley in a summer which will see her visit 70 calling points – some of which she will call at for the first time in her history.

A spokesperson for Waverley Excursions said: “We have been ambitious with this year’s timetable.

“It is our mission to enable as many people as possible to experience Waverley and what she represents.”

Around 39,000 people have already booked tickets to sail on Waverley this year.

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Helensburgh Advertiser: Waverley

Waverley will continue operating from Glasgow around the Clyde Coast until Sunday, before departing for Oban and the Inner Hebrides on Monday.

Between May 21 and 27, she will visit the likes of Craignure, Tobermory, Fort William, Kyle of Lochalsh, Portree and Ullapool.

The paddle steamer will returns to the Clyde coast from June 28, with several cruises planned over the summer months.

Bookings are open at