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Skipper Steve Norris and Shepherd Neames Brands Marketing Manager Rose Davis with Steves dog Poppins

19th June 2024

Shepherd Neame sets sail on another season of sponsorship with historic 'little ship' Greta

Independent family brewer and pub company Shepherd Neame is proud to announce that it is supporting historic 80ft Thames sailing barge Greta for another year.

Built in 1892, Greta was charted by the Ministry of Supply during World War II and is one of the few surviving – and oldest still sailing – ‘Little Ships’ that took part in the Dunkirk evacuation in 1940, bringing Allied soldiers back across the Channel.

Shepherd Neame has sponsored Greta, which is based at Hollowshore Moorings in Faversham, near the home of its historic brewery, since 2005. The barge’s 1,500 sq ft red ochre mainsail features the logo of Shepherd Neame’s award-winning Whitstable Bay collection of beers.

Greta has been operating as a private charter barge for over two decades, sailing throughout the summer season offering trips to the Red Sands Forts or into the Swale Estuary to see rare wildlife including local seal colonies. She spends her winter in Faversham for essential maintenance and repairs, and then is moored in South Quay Whitstable Harbour from April until October.

Skipper Steve Norris, 65, who lives in Faversham, has been sole owner of Greta since 1990. The father-of-two said: “Shepherd Neame has been supporting our ‘Little Ship’ for almost two decades now, and we are incredibly grateful to have its sponsorship for another season. The funds will ensure that we can keep her on the water and allow more people to enjoy a truly unique sailing experience with us.”

Shepherd Neame’s Brands Marketing Manager Rose Davis said: “We are thrilled to be able to support Greta for another season, and help preserve this iconic part of marine history.”

To find out more about Greta and book a trip, visit:

Spitfire single bottle glass

Shepherd Neame Ltd

The fifth-generation independent family business produces Kentish ales of such renown that they are afforded Protected Geographical Indication from the EU.