TESCO volunteers took part in a community programme to give a Maldon-based barge a much needed boost.

The nine women volunteered on Wednesday, September 8, to help the Thames Sailing Barge Trust with its work on sailing barge Pudge, which is undergoing major restoration at K J Finch Shipwrights at Fullbridge.

Tesco have been supporting the Trust with materials and parking for its volunteers and with the help of Rhiain Oakley, community champion at Maldon's Tesco, the women came along and lent a hand with painting and a few other jobs.

Pudge is nearing the end of a three-month programme of painting work after having new decks and other structural work completed.

The project is funded by a Lottery Heritage Grant.

Completion of the painting work will allow the shipwright to start the re-fit work with the hope Pudge will be sailing again next summer.

Her return will mark the vessel's 100th birthday.

John Rayment, volunteer liaison with the Trust said: "It was great to see the enthusiasm the team brought to the work they did and what a great job they made of the tasks they were given.

"We hope that we will be able to ask them to join us again later in the project to lend a hand again."

For more details on the project visit www.thepudgeproject.com.

Read more: Free exhibition celebrates history of Thames sailing barges in Maldon