A MUCH loved ship is set to return to Penarth for the last time during this year's sailing season.

After a long season which began on May 13, the coastal excursion ship the motor vessel Balmoral returns to home waters this weekend.

There will be three days of sailings from Penarth before her winter layup.

She sails from Penarth Pier on Friday at 10am for a visit to Clevedon and a cruise around the Holm Islands.

Then on the Saturday it’s a 10.30am departure for Ilfracombe and on Sunday she departs for Clevedon at 9.30am and again at 11.30am for a cruise around the Holm Islands and the Welsh coast before returning at 5.15pm.

This year, Balmoral has sailed on the south coast, had a season on the River Thames and then two sessions on the north Wales coast at Llandudno and Liverpool before making a return to the River Clyde and Scottish waters lasy weekend.

A spokesman for the ship said: "Sadly she has been dogged this summer by dreadful weather which has apparently followed her around the UK as well as some mechanical problems."

A major fundraising campaign will be launched during the winter to raise the large sum of money needed to fund the ship's spring 2017 maintenance and other repairs and work required.

For full details go to www.whitefunnel.co.uk or call 0117 325 6200.

Tickets can also be bought on board on the day.