Photos by Jenny Steer and Becky Joseph
This 9ft 6in Iain Oughtred-designed glued clinker dinghy built by Boat Building Academy student Alex Kennedy hit the water for the first time at the BBA’s student launch day back in December.
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.
Adam Newton of The Boatyard at Beer has written to say that although he hasn’t yet quite finished his glued clinker 14 ft rowing boat, it has already won the rowing race at the Devon village of Beer’s famous Regatta.
A stretched version of the 12ft Shaldon Regatta, the Boat Building Academy alumnus reports that in winning the race he beat a Fox 14, a rowing skiff designed by BBA instructor Justin Adkin and built by another BBA student, Jim Little.
Adam seems particularly pleased with that achievement, as he says it shows the boat goes well. Congratulations Adam!
Boat Building Academy student Fiona Molloy built an Iain Oughtred-designed Tammie Norrie – click on the images above for a much larger view.
Lancashire-born Fiona developed a new passion for sailing and shortly after threw in the day jobin management accounting in London in order to do something different and more practical for a while. In 38 weeks on the long BBA course she built an 13ft 6in glued clinker Tammie Norrie using plywood and mahogany. She chose the boat for its combination of manageable size and stability.
The choice to do the BBA course wasn’t really a career choice for Fiona: she will go back to her previous job, though hopefully in a setting connected with the sea and boating. But first she’s spending this summer using her new skills to varnish her living room floor and attending some sailing courses on a cutter with the aim of completing an RYA day skipper qualification.
See a photo diary of Fiona’s Tammie Norrie build here.