[June 2011 – This book is now available again after selling out less than a year after publication.]
Holmes of the Humber is a new book by long-standing Humber Yawl Club member Tony Watts. But just who was the book’s subject, George Holmes? The publisher’s notes tell the story so well, I repeat them here just as they appear on the fly-leaf:
‘George Holmes lived from 1861 to 1940 on the northern side of the Humber estuary. He was an avid and accomplished sailor in small craft of his own design, in British waters and in mainland Europe, and his prolific writing and drawing have left us an absorbing and charming record of his cruises, his boats, and the people and places he encountered.
‘In common with his friend and sailing companion Albert Strange, boats were not his regular occupation but were a diversion from his working life. And along with Strange, his name is forever associated with the development of the Canoe-Yawl, now enjoying a renewed popularity. Its sailing qualities make it arguably the best choice of craft for the single- or short-handed coastal and estuary sailor.
‘Holmes of the Humber is a nautical book and a social document. Look within to appreciate the pioneering days of cruising under sail, when enjoyment and fulfilment sprang from personal endeavour and the camaraderie of the group, and were largely independent of the external forces which would control us today.
‘Tony Watts has combined original sources, Holmes’ published output and the recollections of his family, and his own knowledge and experience of the Humber sailing scene to produce this, The Essential George Holmes.’
For more information and sample pages from the Lodestar Books webpages, click here: Holmes of the Humber.
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Holmes of the Humber – a new book about George Holmes
Dick Wynne of the Albert Strange Association has been in touch to say that a new book on artist, writer, sailor and boat designer George Holmes written by Tony Watts is about to burst onto the scene on the 1st December.
That’s good timing I’d say – and I’d guess this first book from the Lodestar Books imprint will be a popular item on many people’s Christmas shopping list this year.
I’ve been promised a chance to see the book in advance – so expect to hear more about Holmes of the Humber here in the next few weeks.
Click here for more information and sample pages from the Lodestar Books webpages: Holmes of the Humber.
PS – Check the Albert Strange Association website for what looks like the beginning of a heart-warming story about a boat the may have been designed by McLean Gibson.
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Sailing canoe Sara is for sale
I’d like to draw attention to a crop of interesting posts over at the Albert Strange Association website.
The first is a rather sad announcement but represents a great opportunity for someone. Due to poor health, ASA technical secretary Rick Powell has reluctantly decided to sell his 15ft, 4ft 6in beam sailing canoe Sara, which he designed and built a few years ago. She’s said to be a modern take on George Holmes’ Ethel concept; her construction involves ply-epoxy planking with strip-planked curved bilges, oak trim, hollow mast and boom, and built-in buoyancy. She has lots of stainless steel fittings Ronstan fittings, and comes complete with cover and road trailer.
ASA site editor Dick Wynne says she has been sailed just four times, and that her performance matches her good looks. She’s on the market at what seems to me to be a very reasonable price. See more here.
The ASA site is always well worth a visit, but at the moment there are some corking stories about some legendary boats, including Eel, Betty (the Strange boat that won the 1927 Fastnet Race), and Sea Harmony.
PS Dick tells me he’s very concerned about the loss of mud from the River Thames, which has led him to moor his boat away from its usual spot at the Greenwich Yacht Club’s moorings. There’s an interesting Wikipedia entry on the subject.
Do you have an interesting boat for sale? Please tell us about her: firstname.lastname@example.org .
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