This newsletter contains the latest information on the progress of the renovation of Chauncy Maples - about fundraising around the world, work in Malawi, and people living around Lake Malawi.
We are delighted to announce the appointment by Malawi Shipping Company of John Kalinga as foreman to the Chauncy Maples team at Monkey Bay. Johnnie has 37 years of experience as a welder, and took part in building ships such as Karanga, Mtendere, and Ufulu for 'Malawi Railways' in Monkey Bay. Father of three sons and three daughters and grandfather of two, Johnnie was born in Zomba and his hobbies are listening to music and watching football.
'John Kalinga has already gained a huge amount of respect from the team,' says Ross Girdler. 'He has started to train two casual workers in basic welding. By the third day they were using their new skills by tack-welding the plates of the main fuel tanks into place. We are a tight unit in the Chauncy Maples team. There is a feeling that everyone is working towards something great.'
'As long as we have the materials on site,' said John Kalinga, 'the job can be completed quickly and effectively.'
Another former school boy from Zomba visited Monkey Bay last month. Mark Harling of Australia brought his 19 year old daughter Lucy to Monkey Bay to see MV Chauncy Maples. 'We had a most wonderful time!' said Mark. 'I felt as though I was going home!'
The visit was a dream come true for Mark who was born in Lilongwe in 1962 to British parents, attended school in Zomba and spent holidays at Monkey Bay. Mark has lived in Australia since 1971 where he worked for the Royal Australian Navy.
'I have always been interested in the missionaries who followed Dr Livingstone into Africa, such as Archdeacon Johnson and his great friend Chauncy Maples. This project to see CM once again bringing assistance to the people of Malawi is truly inspirational.'
Mark's mother Joyce Harling remembers the happy day over 50 years ago when she was confirmed into the Anglican Church in Lilongwe by our patron Archbishop Donald Arden.
Archbishop Arden, now 96, was recently enjoying tea and cakes at The Friends of Malawi Society annual garden party held in a beautiful 18th century house in Dorchester-on-Thames near Oxford. Our other patron, the acting High Commissioner of Malawi, James Ali stood on a bench and made a great speech to the friends of Malawi, including members of the Chauncy Maples Malawi Trust.
Lady of the Lake
In 1903, 'The Building of the Chauncy Maples' was published by the Universities Mission to Central Africa to raise the funds to run MV Chauncy Maples. This is a fascinating account of the extraordinary people whose vision and faith overcame all kinds of obstacles.
In 1990 the book was reprinted in Malawi as 'Lady of the Lake, the story of lake Malawi's MV Chauncy Maples.' With original photos it includes an additional chapter by Vera Garland, covering 90 years of service as a mission ship, war boat and passenger ferry. To our delight, we have tracked down a few copies of 'Lady of the Lake'. They have been in a tropical cupboard for over 20 years, so their condition is not always perfect (we had to brush off a hornet's nest made of clay!). To buy a copy for £30 plus £5 postage (within UK), please send a cheque with a gift aid form to Chauncy Maples Malawi Trust, The Old Music Hall, 106-108 Cowley Road, Oxford OX4 1JE. Or donate via justgiving.com and email us the date, our donation and your name and address. Or buy one for a friend!
Crane to Monkey Bay
We are delighted to announce the purchase of a reconditioned Grove crane with 25 ton lifting capacity. This will lift the engine, generators, fuel and freshwater tanks into the hull. It will soon be on its way to Monkey Bay from Durban.
Ross Girdler, our project manager, would like to thank the Ministry of Finance and Malawi Revenue Authority for all their help and support now that essential goods and equipment are starting to be shipped into Malawi, exempt from duty and taxes. This includes the Grove crane and a scaffolding tower.