Peter Radclyffe talks about restoring a many decades old traditionally built boat made for the Mediterranean

Peter Radclyffe

Down on Elba, Peter Radclyffe talks about the issues involved in restoring and repairing a many decades old traditionally built boat made for the Mediterranean. I hope folks can see it, because he has some interesting points to make…

Bicentenary of Napoleon’s arrival at Elba – restaged using Peter Radclyffe boat

Napoleon arrives at Elba 2014

Yesterday the folks of Elba marked the day two centuries ago when Napoleon landed on the island to live in exile – and used boatbuilder and designer Peter Radclyffe’s newly built 6m gozzo La Grace for the purpose.

She’s a little high on her lines as she’s waiting for an engine and other things to be installed.

The local newspaper has stories and great photos here and here, and put up the YouTube video above. The pomp and style seems entirely in keeping, and I love the hats…

Peter’s Facebook page has photos of the boat, including these:

La Grace Gozzo La Grace 3  Gozzo La Grace 4

Peter Radclyffe’s recent projects

Radclyffe Dilston Class 2

Radclyffe Dilston Class Radclyffe Design no 97 50m schooner

These striking drawings come from Peter Radclyffe Design – if that name seems familiar, it’s because he went public in Classic Boat with some drawings for a new J Class yacht last summer, and that he was responsible for rebuilding the Lulworth some years ago.

Peter tells me that the Dilston Class (top and above left) is named after the village of Dilston near  Corbridge, Northumberland, which is where his  family hails from. He adds that he learned a lot about the design of boats of this kind  from studying the work of John Leather – in the early 70s he lived in the same nearby to Leather’s home at Fingringhoe.

Design no 77, a 50m schooner, is based on the Vera Mary designed by JM Soper and launched in 1932. I think I’d want to take a photograph or 500 if she passed anywhere near me – if I could collect myself long enough to remember where I’d put my camera.