Brian Moseley, Plymouth
Webpage created: September 26, 2019
Webpage updated: September 26, 2019




This ferry service ran from the Cattedown Steps across the Cattewater to the New Pier at Turnchapel.

The limestone cliffs at Cattedown were slowly quarried away over the years and this left a large area of flat ground upon which various industries, obnoxious to the Townspeople, were set up.  The prevailing westerly winds could thus blow the smells and fumes away from the Town and it was of no concern of Plymothians that the ancient town of Plympton might suffer as a result.

Two fertiliser manufacturers set up in this area and many of their workers came from the Plymstock side of the Cattewater.  These were carried across the water on the 6.30am ferry and returned home at 5.30pm.  It is thought that workers at the Turnchapel Wharves were carried in the opposite direction.  The boats normally carried nine people.

The toll was one penny each way but the Turnchapel Dockyard workers could purchase a weekly ticket for 8d, which allowed them two single trips per day.  The ferry presumably did not operated on Sundays.  If they went home to lunch they could buy a weekly ticket for 1s 6d that allowed for a return trip in the middle of the day.

It is understood that this service survived the Second World War but ceased in about 1947, thanks, no doubt, to the increasing popularity of the more comfortable motor bus services.