Category Archives: Boating, boats, ships and the sea

Check the intheboatshed.net blogroll

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Ben Crawshaw’s beach at Tarragona in winter

The Invisible Workshop’s Ben Crawshaw has been taking striking photographs of the beach outside his Tarragona apartment

You may have noticed the Blogroll to the right of this post. It’s meant to be a list of friendly weblogs and websites relevant to intheboatshed.net readers. And that’s exactly what it is – some of them are very old friends indeed (aren’t they Chris?), and I find they’re well worth a look whenever I feel I’m missing the water.

So tonight I’d like to draw attention to some particular gems on the intheboatshed.net Blogroll .

Ben Crawshaw of The Invisible Workshop has been taking a series of strikingly beautiful photos of his local beach in winter. Even in Spain, it’s now too cold to use the water with any pleasure, so he’s now walking, watching the sea, photographing it and, no doubt, dreaming about the spring.

Albert Strange Association webmaster Dick Wynne has been busy putting up news items, drawings and photos relating to their hero and his very attractive designs. And some of the news has been very good indeed – it seems Blue Jay has new owners, who have become members of the ASA.

Chris Perkin’s weblog Bumble of Loch Dubh currently has just one very interesting post describing how he built his first two clinker ply dinghies. It’s long and interesting, particularly because his next boat, an award-winning Iain Oughtred Macgregor sailing canoe has become something of a legend. (For more on the Macgregor, follow this link.)

Rowing for Pleasure is Chris Partridge’s wide-ranging weblog. Check out his illuminating posts about the boats of Venice, his trip round the backside of Portsea Island, the important place of the name Snarley(y)ow, and a rather sweet photo of the young Chris at the oars of a Thames Skiff long ago.

He says ‘I’ve been looking through family photo albums and discovered this pic of me rowing stroke on the Upper Thames in 1960 with Dad at bow. The boat was a beautiful mahogany double skiff called Snarleyow. Somehow, I can’t remember a single day when it rained.’

Funny that – I too can confirm that it never rained when my dad took us out on the Thames. Dads were much cleverer in those days and I sometimes think it’s a shame my kids have to deal with someone much more Pooterish.

And now for something completely different. George in Michigan is building one of Matt Layden’s distinctive little sharpies and tells us all about it at Building an Enigma 460. Many of home boat builders are intrigued by Matt’s simple and inexpensive solo and two-person micro sailing cruisers, and by his amazing sailing feats, and I’m no exception. There are still precious few designs for boats of this kind.

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Ian Proctor remembered at the Maritime Museum Cornwall

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Ian Proctor

Ian Proctor. His achievement in designing popular small sailing boats was recognised by the design establishment

The National Maritime Museum in Cornwall is staging an exhibition celebrating the work of outstanding 20th Century small sailing boat designer Ian Proctor. I’m delighted, as there can’t be many small boat sailors in the UK who haven’t sailed at least one of his boats – my own family sail a Minisail and a Prelude, and love them both even if their little hearts are plastic.

Here’s the NMM’s press release outlining some of Proctor’s outstanding achievements:

‘The life of Ian Proctor and his outstanding designs will be celebrated this autumn at the Maritime Museum in Falmouth.

‘From September 17, find out more about this accomplished yachtsman and prolific designer in the Museum’s Study Boat Area. Check out a state of the art brand new Topper dinghy on show, loaned to the Museum by Topper International, and the first fibre glass International Tempest, Tempestuous.

‘Ian Proctor’s innovative designs and ideas modernised the whole concept of small boat sailing, making a vital contribution to the popularisation of the sport. He designed over 100 different boats and was a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Royal Designer for Industry.

‘Andy Wyke, Boat Collection Manager at the Museum, explained: “I chose Proctor because Continue reading Ian Proctor remembered at the Maritime Museum Cornwall

Some thoughts on barge and smack boats

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Mike Feather’s smack boat Lettuce on the bar at Brancaster

Mike Feather sailing smack boat Lettuce over the bar at Brancaster, Norfolk. Mike comments that with a reef in she was under good control and rode the waves without shipping any water.

Alf Last’s boat Smack boats racing at Walton on the Naze 2002 Smack boat on its side

Above left. Maldon boat builder Alf Last built his best and last barge boat and a mould was taken off it. Here is a cast ready for fitting out. Many barges now carry these – they are stable and sail well. They do not dry out if left in the davits. Above centre.smacks’ boats racing at Walton on the Naze 2002. Above right. A smack boat on its side shows the shallow draft and centre board slot. Click here for more: Continue reading Some thoughts on barge and smack boats