News from the Boat Building Academy, Lyme Regis, and from Charlie Hussey

(Above) Boat Building Academy alumnus Charlie Hussey’s latest project. She was
launched in 1892.
(Below) Another Clyde 17/19 lugger, Harlequin, in flight

Principal Yvonne Green writes from the Boat Building Academy at Lyme Regis:

‘Hi Gavin,

‘Thought you might be interested that Charlie Hussey (the student who built Seapod the Peapod during the last academic year) has just started a job restoring a Fife-built and designed Clyde 17/19 lugger, and has started a terrific blog that will chart the commission at .

‘We will also be launching seven (crossed fingers) student boats on  the 10th December at noon in Lyme Regis harbour.

‘They’re an interesting lot, both students and boats. Student profiles and photographic diaries of the boats are at The students started the builds in mid-June this year, and are also required to attend lessons and complete assessment pieces, so they’ve been quite busy.

‘I’ll send further details, and photographs of each boat nearer launch time, but thought you might like an idea of what’s happening on the workshop floor at the moment.

‘Very best wishes,


I certainly do – and thanks for the update!

Websits: Boat Building Academy

Don’t miss something good – subscribe to inthe

John Harris builds a Tammie Norrie

[ad name=”intheboatshed-post”]

John Harris with his Tammie Norrie, built while attending the
Boat Building Academy at Lyme Regis

Yvonne Green, principal of the Boat Building Academy at Lyme Regis has kindly sent us some photos and details of boatbuilding projects by recent students – and here’s the second in the series.

While still working in his career as a consulting engineering geologist John Harris made a kit boat with oars and spars, and attended a basic clinker boat building and repair short course at the Academy. When he retired, however, he fulfilled a life-long ambition and, as he puts it, came to the Academy to learn how to build boats properly.

While on the course he built a glued-clinker Tammie Norrie yawl with a balanced lug foresail designed by Iain Oughtred. The plans are available from Classic Marine.

See an earlier post about Ian Thomson’s Nestaway dinghy.

[ad name=”link-unit-post-bottom”]

The Boat Building Academy builds a gig for the new Lyme Regis Gig Club

[ad name=”intheboatshed-post”]

Photos of the new pilot gig Rebel, built at the Boat Building Academy –
in the first Gail McGarva sits under the boat she project-managed.
As usual, click on the thumbnails for much larger photos

Lyme Regis’s well known Boat Building Academy agreed to build a pilot gig for the newly formed Lyme Regis Gig Club just over a year ago. It doesn’t normally undertake commercial work but this was a commission the Academy couldn’t refuse, according to principal Yvonne Green.

Former student and British Marine Federation Trainee of the Year 2005 turned instructor Gail McGarva project-managed the build and involved as many students and members of the local community as possible, including evening classes for members of the gig club to make their own oars – all of the school contributed even down to knocking in a rivet.

The students were not involved on a day to day basis as they were busy with their own boats but because the gig was in the main workshops it seems to have made a useful teaching aid, and Yvonne reports that the gig was launched on the 29th June with due ceremony. The mayor, the vicar, the town crier, students and the town all came, blessings were read, salt was strewn and the gig was rowed successfully across Lyme Regis’s sizeable bay.

‘The pilot gig measurers said it was one of the best gigs they had seen,’ she adds with pride.

Lyme Regis Gig Club named the new boat Rebel after the Duke of Monmouth, who started his 17th-century rebellion against the Crown on Monmouth beach, where the Boat Building Academy now stands.

Follow the link for more on the Boat Building Academy.

The Telegraph newspaper recently published a long feature on the Academy. I’m envious by the way – I wish people would commission me to write pieces like that!

For more posts including material about pilot gigs, click here.

[ad name=”link-unit-post-bottom”]