Previous Toc Next

  THE STORY OF SHOREHAM       TRANCKMORE'S SHIPS  
                     
formerly part of the Fountain Inn, adjoining the Old Shipyard, and recently restored and placed in the Town Hall.   tons-a fair size for those days-four of 200, and one each of 180, 150, and 140 tons.   The dates given are those of the certificates.
The centre panel of this interesting relic has, with very slight difference, a well executed representation of the Arms of the Shipwrights' Company of London, granted in the year 1605, viz. •.-On a shield the hulls of a vessel, above which a cross, a lion on the latter. Crest-On a helmet, a Noah's Ark with dove with wings expanded.   27th September, 1625, the " Thomas Bonaventure " ;   4th January, 1626, the " Garland," of London ; 28th October, 1627, a ship on the stocks unfinished; 15th July, 1629, the "Mary and John," of London; 14th October, 1629, a ship unnamed; 25th Noveinber, 1629, the "Content," of London; 5th June, 1630, the "Charles," of London ; 27th July, 1631, the "Joan Bonaventure " ;   5th May, 1632, the " Confident " ;   6th July, 1633, the " Joseph," of London ;   28th September, 1633, the " Thomas and John," of London, which vessel was " furnished with 18 pieces of cast-iron ordnance, from the usual market in Smithfield " ; 7th May, 1636, the " Blessing," of Dover ;   25th June, 1636, the " Ann and Sarah."
The dove does not appear in the Shoreham carving, and the motto of the Company, "Within the ark safe for ever," is likewise absent. The left-hand panel shows a ship afloat ; the right-hand panel gives a view of the Parish Church.  
           
Picture   In February, 1628, Robert Tranckinore obtained the contract to build one of ten pinnaces for the Government. These were ,small craft of about 185 tons and were provided with sweeps as well as sails.   They were three-mashed and square-rigged, carrying ten guns on two decks and were built after the model of a ship ,called the " Lion," and so were named " Lion's Whelps," being numbered from one to ten.   Tranekmore built the "Tenth
           
  Lion's Whelp " at a cost of £596 17s. 9d.   His receipts for payment are preserved in the Record Office.   On June 11th, 1628, Capt John Pennington wrote to Sir Edward Nicholas, Secretary to the Admiralty, requesting a warrant for John Tranekmore to take charge as master of the " Tenth Lion's Whelp," built by his brother. -Nicholas Tranekmore was appointed carpenter, and John More, a native of Shoreham, boatswain, a warrant being issued by the Lord High Admiral to press seamen for her.   It is curious to learn that her master-cook, after holding that office for a year, sold it to Robert Swainson " for life."
           
Robert Tranekmore, who may have been a descendant of the Trenchmeres who figured in the history of the town during the twelfth century, was the noted shipbuilder at this time. „Possibly he was a member of the Shipwrights' Company, and it may have been for him that the chimney-piece was carved.   We learn from the Minutes of the East India Company that they agreed with him, in July, 1619, to build a ship at Shoreham.  
  A John Tranekmore is mentioned as master of the " Shoreham " in 1634, when ten lasts of powder were delivered to him to be transported to Ireland.
  In the Record Office is preserved a Certificate bearing the signature of Inigo Jones, the celebrated architect. It is dated " May ye 6, 1637," and from it we learn that the " Indeavor," of Shoreham, a barque, was to be " emploied for ye space of nine rnonths for the carriage and transportation of stone from the Isle of Portland to London for the repair of the Cathedral Church of St. Paul."   Thomas Clearke was the master of this vessel
It was the usual custom at this period for a vessel, on her completion, to be furnished with as many pieces of ordnance as her owner deemed necessary for her defence, and for this purpose, warrants, known as Trinity House Certificates, were issued. They are known to have been granted in respect of the following ships, built by Tranekmore at Shoreham.   Five of them were of 300  
           
                     
    148           149    

Previous Toc Next

Copyright © Martin Snow 2002 All rights reserved
Revised 27 February 2002