REPLICA SPANISH SOLID SILVER PADDLE ON SHOW A CENTURY ON
By Contributor / 2013-09-17 11:18:11
A silver Paddle replica - from a Spanish Galleon - lies within the corridors of power back in the UK at Preston Town Hall a Century after being cast.
The paddle - rarely seen - was on show at this month's Heritage Open Day at the Lancashire, Preston Town Hall, in the presence of the Mayor. "I am privileged to be able to show off Preston's wonderful historical treasures," said The Mayor of Preston Coun. Veronica Afrin.
The paddle was made in 1913 out of solid silver to reflect Preston's Maritime History. Preston Dock - opened in 1892 - was Europe's largest single dock basin The original wooden paddle - made from the Spanish Galleon that was shipwrecked in the waters of the River Ribble - was accidentally destroyed when thrown onto a fire during the 20th Century.
It is deemed that the Spanish Galleon shipwrecked in the River Ribble was linked with The Spanish Armada - which sailed from Spain in July 1588. The Spanish Armada sailed to Britain in a bid to overthrow protestant England lead by Queen Elizabeth I. History records also reveal a Spanish galleon was stranded off the Fylde Coast, which was salvaged by Cromwell’s troops. The stranded Spanish galleon was amongst famous Shipwreck Treasure Finds - with gold and silver bullion - found at sea.
For hundreds of years the Spanish plate fleets carried tons of gold and silver - from Potosi and Cartagena - into the new world and back to Spain. During sailings Galleons were shipwrecked - with shipwreck salvaging taking place over many centuries - and continuing today. Invaders in the North of England boosted the population with Paleolithic hunters, Neolithic farmers, Celts, Romans, Anglo Saxons, Norwegians, Danes, French and Normans. And archive records state Spanish - said to be Spaniards from a shipwrecked Galleon.
The silver 'Spanish' paddle is part of Preston City Council Regalia - that also includes a silver gilt mace crafted out of solid silver in 1702. Preston Dock was closed in the eighties. A new £4.5m Ribble Link - the first canal to be built for 100 years - connects the dock to the Lancaster Canal and the national waterways network. ends
BY ANDREW ATKINSON