Glenlee has had a chequered history since she was launched at Port Glasgow in 1896. She has also been known as Islamount (1899), Clarastella (from 1919 when she was sold to an Italian company) and Galatea (from 1922 when she was sold to the Spanish navy as a training vessel.) In 1992, she was purchased by the Clyde Maritime Trust who brought her “home”, restored her, including her name, and opened her to the public in 1999. She’s been at the Riverside since it opened in 2011. Last weekend, the Glasgow Gathering of Quilters had an exhibition of work inspired by the Clyde – it’s still there till Friday if you hurry.
I last visited the Riverside not long after it opened and wrote about my impressions then. This time, there was less pressure to see everything and we just wandered round the bits that caught our eye. We had a tasty lunch in the downstairs café at the start of our visit (fish and chips for him; vegetable balti for me) – there’s also a more casual place for snacks upstairs and a coffee shop on the ship, so you could easily spend the whole day there. The Riverside won the European Museum of the Year Award 2013 – it’s well-deserved.