I was a bit harsh in my previous comment. Perhaps it would be better to say that the plates were a temporary repair. However I would still want to see what was underneath! At the least the plates indicate that someone was concerned about the skeg moving from side to side. It is likely that the bolts are corroded after all this time, and failure here will result in loss of steering. So I would investigate. If you want to see how it all fits together look for the blog I wrote about calistas road accident.
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