Grim Reaper will not call as landmark fishing boat is saved

Trawler has been landlocked at Burghead for 30 years

Hopes have been raised for the future of a wrecked fishing boat whose removal from a Moray harbour has been ordered by Council chiefs.

Moray Council gave the owner of the Harvest Reaper until today to remove the boat – or face it being broken up and removed by them from Burghead Harbour.

Lossiemouth man David Meldrum had helped save the boat when it had run aground in the 1980’s and took ownership – but his plans to renovate the vessel as a retirement project has never happened as at 68 he continues to work.

It looked likely this week that the Council threat would be carried out, as they sought to removed the Harvest Reaper as it was in the way of renovations they are carrying out at the harbour.

However, an eleventh-hour move by Elgin-based plumber Jimmy Wiseman and Burghead ‘Clavie King’ Dan Ralph looks like it will save the boat.

Mr Wiseman insisted that he would “have stood in front of the digger myself” if the council had attempted to crush it – that will now, however, happen as Moray Council have confirmed that they are aware of the new bid and will give the rescuers additional time to arrange its removal.

A council spokesman told the P&J newspaper: “We have been contacted to say arrangements are being made to remove the boat and relocate it elsewhere in the vicinity of the harbour at the beginning of next week.

“We are quite content with that – thereafter the work will be able to proceed on building the new workshop units and upgrading those that are already there.”

Mr Wiseman believes it will cost around £50,000 to restore the Harvest Reaper to its former glory.

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