Praams for hire at Dunorlan Park boating pond, Tunbridge Wells

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Praam dinghies on the boating lake at Dunorlan Park

The old wooden praams at Dunorlan Park, in Tunbridge Wells may all be gone now, but here are some photos I took with my mobile phone a couple of years ago.

It’s intriguing that a collection of classic little Norwegian-style dinghies like this should end up on a pleasure boating lake in South-Eastern England, but they did a good job for several generations – not least, I suppose, because they had the capacity to carry four adults in comfort an a short hull.

I have a hazy recollection that I was told they were built in the North-East by McNulty.

The Wikipedia doesn’t say much about praams, but there is this nice photo of a praam on the Wikimedia.

PS – There’s a comment below from the gentleman who hires them out. I’m pleased to be able to say that after 40 years, these boats are still available for hire at Dunorlan Park.

A busy yard with some great projects to its name – and many more to come

Newson’s boatyard stands by Oulton Broad in Lowestoft, Suffolk – that is, right on the East Coast of England and at the gateway to the Norfolk Broads.

Restoration is only one part of the company’s business, for it is also a boatbuilder in wood, steel and fibreglass, makes masts, and undertakes surveys and engine installations. Nevertheless, Newson’s has surely done some terrific boat and yacht restoration projects of various sizes, and the company has kindly promised to let us publish some of their photos over time.

Just for a start, though take a look at the William & Kate Johnston (pictured below), and then take a look around for a taste of what’s to come from this yard:
http://www.newson.co.uk

This is where it is:
www.multimap.com

Launched in 1923, William & Kate Johnston was designed as a prototype lifeboat by James R. Barnett, Consulting Naval Architect to the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, and at the time of her launch she was the largest lifeboat in the world at 60ft in length. She was built with a double diagonal teak hull by J. Samuel White and Co at Cowes. For more on her:
http://www.william-kate-johnston.co.uk

If you would like to see your yard, project or boat listed here, please email us at gmatkin@gmail.com . There’s no charge, and no catch.

William & Kate Johnston