Steve Taylor’s 1923 Hillyard Dorma back under sail again

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Dorma Dorma Dorma

Steve Taylor’s 24ft Hillyard-built yacht, Dorma, and Steve himself

Some days ago, Steve Taylor, Bob Telford and friend Paul Tambini took Steve’s newly restored 24ft 1923 Hillyard yacht Dorma out for her first successful sail after a well executed but respectful restoration. Well, I suppose one could say it was successful in a sailing sense; the engine proved to be a disaster area. (I don’t know Paul, but gather he’s currently fixing up a Blackwater sloop by the side of Faversham Creek and runs a tool store – see the link below.)

Bob takes up the story:

‘The wind was perfect, the sun shone, the tide was right and everything was set for Dorma’s first proper outing.

‘We had taken her out once before, briefly, and had to return early when the bobstay parted; that’s what a shakedown is about, after all. Repairs and improvements completed, we awaited everything to be in place for a proper first sail.

‘When the day came, the engine took us down to the Swale, by which time we had raised the main; the jib and stays’l took over from the engine – and the suddenly quiet was shattering. Now I know why people hated those diesels thirty years ago.

‘We left a reef in until we had the feel of her; it was four gusting five and we wanted to stretch her gently, especially after our first experience.

‘She sailed well, seemed well balanced under reefed main, and Click here for the rest of the story: Continue reading “Steve Taylor’s 1923 Hillyard Dorma back under sail again”


Bob Telford’s first race sailing a dinghy with a standing lug


Standing lug sail from W P Stephens classic Canoe and
Boatbuilding for Amateurs

Bob Telford called by the yard currently restoring his impressive Maurice Griffiths-designed Idle Duck (type the word Idle Duck into the search box top left for more on this boat), only to find himself roped in to what sounded like an interesting round-the-buoys outing. Instead, though, it turned out to be a learning experience…

‘I knew something was afoot when I trundled into the inner sanctum known to some as Alan’s Community Center, for Retired Shipwrights, Dockyard Mateys and Associated Layabouts, and saw him and Peter look up, saying ’just the man…d’you fancy sailing in the Swale Match in me dinghy?

‘”Yes,” says I, without thinking.

‘The boat is a 10-ft lug rigged clinker job, so there I was, on my own, in a dinghy I had never rigged, let alone sailed, heading for the line for a race against four 16-ft fully crewed gaff-rigged dayboats.

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Read the rest of Bob’s story: Continue reading “Bob Telford’s first race sailing a dinghy with a standing lug”