Photos by Jenny Steer and Becky Joseph
This 9ft 6in Boat Building Academy student Alex Kennedy hit the water for the first time at the BBA’s student launch day back in December.-designed glued clinker dinghy built by
Built to Oughtred’s Sea Hen plans, she is named Gracious Lady, and is planked in Robbins elite ply.
During the build Iain Oughtred himself regularly showed his support to Alex via the Academy’s facebook page, giving the thumbs-up to photographs of the dinghy throughout its build, and also to Alex’s birthday cake, which took the shape of a chocolate ship.
Before attending his BBA course, Alex worked in various roles including as a mechanic and chauffeur. He has travelled in Australia and enjoys sailing, swimming and cycling.
Like most most students, he started with little or no woodworking skills, and openly admits that he ‘didn’t even know how to hold a chisel on day one’, but I gather he is now delighted with what he has achieved.
James Goulding worked closely with Alex on Sea Hen. James went to school in Dubai and then completed a BTEC National Diploma in Design at Chichester College before joining the Academy. His previous jobs have ranged from carpenting in Bournemouth to sales in Dubai.
James plans to use his new skills to find work in the marine industry and would like to travel the world; Since the course ended Alex has visited America and is to do a two-week internship at the Mystic Seaport Museum.