Boat Building Academy launch day, summer 2012 – Sunrise


Despite wet weather, a crowd of friends, family, BBA staff, past graduates and even the Lyme’s Mayor joined the 18 students on the Academy’s 38-week course to celebrate completing nine months of hard work.

Sunrise, above, was the first student boat to hit the water. A 13ft by 5ft 6in traditional clinker-built dinghy planked in larch, she was built by students George Herivel and Will Heward, and will be used for rowing and sailing.

Academy instructor Justin Adkin designed Sunrise using photographs of a boat that George’s family owned in Alderney, and then created a half-model of the boat to ensure that he was happy with the design. Justin suggests that some future students may wish to build the same boat, as it has good freeboard, a full transom and firm bilges – between them, these features should give the boat a secure feel, lots of bouyancy and the ability to stand up to its sails.

Goerge says he wanted to build a boat with the same stability and handling in fairly heavy weather as the original and has been completely happy with the outcome – the boat was sailing on Lake Windermere only last week, and although the breezes were light it still performed and handled extremely well.

He added that it can accommodate up to four comfortably when sailing, and six when rowed.

Before coming to the BBA, George, who is originally from Alderney had retired from the Army and was living in Plymouth, where he worked in a variety of roles as transport manager, carpenter and also assistant manager for Screwfix.

George has returned to Plymouth following his graduation from the BBA and aims to work in the boat building industry with a view to starting his own business – his aim is to specialise in traditional boat building methods.

Will is originally from West Dorset but spent four years working around Australia before starting at the BBA.

After graduating, Will gained a position at Spirit Yachts of Ipswich in Suffolk and is due to begin work in August.