Atalanta owned by Dominic Dobson. As usual, click on the photo for a larger image
A white-hulled Atalanta and a teal blue-hulled Titania photographed at
the Beale Park Thames Boat show a couple of years ago
Owners of boats made by Fairey Marine have created a new website and forum at http://www.atalantaowners.org.uk.
The Atalanta light displacement drop-keel sailingl cruiser was conceived in 1955 by Alan Vines, a senior executive at Fairey. It was developed with the expertise of Uffa Fox, and made from hot moulded agba veneers using a technology originally developed for wooden aircraft during World War II.
Although the prototype was 24ft long – named Atalanta she is is still sailing the East Coast with the sail number A1 – but by the time the finalised boat went into production, the length had been increased to 26ft in order to improve her accommodation.
The company went on to produce other drop-keel sailing cruisers using the same methods, the Titania, the larger Atalanta 31 and the smaller Fulmar.
Although the hot-moulded agba veneer proved to be strong, light, durable and repairable, the designs eventually became uncompetitive compared with GRP boats, and production ceased in the early 1970s, after some 278 boats of all four types had been built. Today, over 130 continue to be owned by members of the Association.
For a post about some hot- moulded Fairey Marine-built dinghies, click here.
I gather that Atalanta Owners’ patron is ex Fairey director Charles Currey, whose airborne lifeboat converted for racing can be seen here.
Dominic’s Atalanta on Coniston Water shows the benefit of sailing a trailer-sailer
Emma Duck, which I gather belongs to Association member Tom Lawton. Now, is she an Atalanta or a Titania? The teal-blue hull may be a clue – or not!