Bill Hitchins has big plans for Albert Strange’s Blue Jay,
despite the slight hogging in her sheer
People who care for old boats are a special breed – each one I’ve met has seemed to me to have been a mix of several key ingredients.
Along with a big helping of the romantic, they have to have a large dollop of the perfectionist craftsman about them, they must enjoy getting thoroughly dirty, and they have to be happy to take on large long-term projects that will probably seem less than sensible to most of their family and friends.
In my experience there’s usually also a sense that the boat and its inevitable problems are a kind of cross the traditional boat enthusiast is bound to bear by some law of God. After a talk about what’s going wrong, how it all has to be fixed and how it’s much simpler for owners of plastic boats, the phrase I’ve heard many times is: ‘Well, you’ve got to, haven’t you?’
I hope that Bill Hitchins, who has just bought Albert Strange’s lovely Blue Jay, won’t mind my saying it’s clear from his write up and photographs that he’s got the romance, love of dirty, practical work, craftsmanship and long-term projects bits of the mix in spades. Just take a look at the photos in this post at the Albert Strange Association website, for they show exactly what he’s taking on. Good luck to him and the boat, I say.
I think many intheboatshed.net readers will want to wish him well by adding a comment at the bottom of his post. Where would all the old boats be if it wasn’t for heroes like Bill? I think we know the answer.
For more on Albert Strange and the Albert Strange Association, follow this link.
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