The English Raid – a ‘raid’ rowing and sailing event on the Solent

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Raid Finland revisited Raid Finland revisited Raid Finland revisited

Photos from Raid Finland some years ago (photos from Richard Wynne); there’s a report on the latest Raid Finland at Duckworks

Henley Whalers group members George Trevelyan and Geoff Probert have organised a rowing and sailing ‘raid‘ event on the English South Coast for modern and wooden boats. It’s scheduled for the few days between 28th July and the 1st August 2010, starting from the Western end of the Solent.

A raid is an organised rowing and sailing passage in company in open boats, sometimes made of wood and traditional, sometimes more modern, powered by sail and oar, and supported by an organiser’s launch or rescue boat. In addition, arrangements are made to carry participants luggage from one overnight stopover to another!

Raids are generally non-competitive events, but often include fun prizes to recognise special qualities and achievements, and there are sometimes short sailing or rowing races.

I should explain that the word ‘raid’ here comes from the French organisers of the pioneer events and isn’t meant to imply anyone plans to attack homes and villages en route.

The idea of the raids first became popular in Portugal and Scotland in the 1990s and successful events have been held on the Douro River in Portugal, the Great Glen of Scotland, and in Sweden, Finland, Italy and Holland. To enter boats need to be equipped for sail and oar, and must be able to support their crew out of water after a capsize, and to be righted unaided to carry on sailing. They will be expected to cover around 15 miles daily.

One of the organisers’ objectives is to attract users who own traditional open sailing boats on the Solent, particularly scows and prams, along with the whalers, gigs, yawls and so on more frequently seen at raid-style events. The maximum number of entries for the new event is 20 boats, so I would expect the places to sell out quickly. It you’d like to be involved, contact English Raid via its website:

Restored 1943 type K Montagu whaler, good condition, for sale in London

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Montagu whaler Vancouver is now sold

Dick Wynne is selling his 27ft 6in type K Montagu whaler. I’m sure it has been a painful decision and it’s a damn shame for all those who have enjoyed crewing her, but no doubt two traditional boats like this is too much for one man!

This could be the offer of a lifetime for someone. Here’s what he says about the boat:

Vancouver is an ex-Royal Navy ship’s boat built in 1943 and lovingly restored and maintained over many years regardless of expense.

Construction is mahogany and larch on oak, with gunwales, thwarts etc in solid teak. She is probably the finest example of the type in existence. Her equipment includes:

– five matching 15ft spruce Admiralty oars plus many spares

– full sailing rig – lug main, jib and mizzen

– 6hp Mariner outboard on a lifting quarter bracket, with lock, and separate fuel tank mounted in sternsheets

– two bilge pumps

– ample buoyancy

– 12 x 150N automatic XM lifejackets with recharging kits

– two paddles for tight spots

Admiralty pattern anchor

– mooring lines, fenders, full-length tent/cover

– nearly new four-wheel braked trailer with sealed hubs and brake flushing system

All her external paintwork was renewed in 2008, and all her exposed timber stripped of varnish and oiled (with Deks Olje #1 and #2) for ease of maintenance. Although of traditional timber construction, she is in superb condition and is easily maintained so. A faultless recent professional survey report is available to serious enquirers.

She is a robust, stable and versatile workhorse fully equipped for pulling, sailing and motoring in a variety of applications including raids, races, expeditions, pleasure trips under power, race/committee boat use, etc. She would make an excellent school or club boat.

Vancouver has plied the tidal Thames in London under oar and sail for the past few years, and is a regular in the annual Great River Race. She has been trailed farther afield to locations including the East Coast, Western Highlands, and Milford Haven, and attracts much attention wherever she goes. She is only reluctantly for sale as, rather improbably, she is my second boat and I can no longer find the time to do justice to two traditional wooden boats. She is currently lying afloat in London.’

For a pdf including more photos from last year click here, and for more on the boat and what he’s been doing with it, click here.

Also, if you’re curious about what his other boat might be, this photo and the knowledge that he’s a leading member of the Albert Strange Association will probably tell you all you need to know.

Complete with a full inventory including trailer, Dick is asking for £9,500 or offers. Call him on 07990 573160.

We don’t often see whalers, but for some photos of one I spotted in the Fal Estuary some time ago, click here.

Chris Perkins builds Michael Storer’s Raid

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Chris Perkins’ build of Michael Storer’s RAID looking almost
supernaturally neat and tidy. I must ask him how he does it!

What happens when a prize-winning amateur builder of glued lapstrake boats like Chris Perkins builds a boat with chine logs and frames with cleats?

A flawlessly tidy looking job, that’s what! Notice how he’s managed to glass the bottom with only one tiny run…

See more photos of his build of Michael Storer’s RAID at his weblog Strathkan Chris’s Little World. He’s building it for his friend Brian Pearson, who I think is a very lucky chap indeed. I think Michael has been pretty lucky here too, by the way: every designer prays the first build to their latest new design will be built by someone like Chris!