Irvine’s maritime museum has raised £39,835 for essential repairs for the world’s oldest floating Clyde-built vessel – more than double the £15,000 target.

The Scottish Maritime Museum’s Keep the Kyles Afloat campaign was made possible by the #SupportOurMuseums initiative, where Crowdfunder UK and the Museums Association provide free support to museums amid the pandemic.

David Mann, director of the museum, said: “We are blown away by the support for our campaign to get MV Kyles shipshape for its 150th anniversary in 2022.

“Thanks to everyone who has donated, and the help of the #supportourmuseums initiative which made the campaign possible, we can ensure that this historic vessel remains part of Scotland’s living maritime heritage for decades to come. We can make essential repairs, create new interpretation and now we can be even more ambitious, working on the engine so Kyles can sail under its own power for first time in over a decade.

“We now hope to sail Kyles up the Firth of Clyde and into Glasgow for the UN’s Climate Change Conference in November. What a birthday gift for a rare survivor and a workhorse of a vessel which has had 24 different owners and been continually adapted, as a cargo coaster, fishing tender, sand dredger and even a sludge tanker before being retired to the museum in 1984!

“Our heartfelt thanks go to everyone who donated.”

There was even a £15,000 donation from Mr John Paul DeJoria of Texas.