Home Built Boat Regatta Cotswold 2008 meeting report

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From the top left: John Lockwood with his new dinghy,
various canoes, and a maiden voyage for Chris Perkins’
new small canoe

I was hoping one of the Home Built Boat Regatta folks would be kind enough to send me a report of their annual Cotswold Water Park event – and Chris Perkins has kindly done so.

Here’s what he says:

‘Some 14 boats of varying sizes, shapes and propulsion braved the floods and atrocious weather to attend our annual Cotswolds Rally.

‘Although the rally site turned out to be an island of relative calm and dryness in an otherwise soggy country, tranquil it was not however – a free concert raised the roof until the wee small hours at the other end of the lake, wasn’t much fun either for us or the triathletes either who had to take to the water at 8 on Sunday morning.

‘Sunday was a dry day – so your intercession in your post announcing the meeting obviously had some effect!

‘Two maiden launches took place – an intriguing build by John Lockwood of Swindon, who launched what he called a Moby variant based on a set of Motor Boat & Yachting plans from the late 1970s. He scrounged and used Ebay to obtain his materials, so the boat turned out to be a pretty economical way of getting on the water.

‘My Iain Oughtred-designed Stickleback, Stangarra, took to the water for the first time in the capable hands of our friend Chris Partridge. All that rowing has certainly built his arm power – she flew under his ‘oarsmanship’.

‘I think the general feeling was that it was well worth risking the usual HBBR soaking for the pleasure we had playing with each others boats and general chat. As we are not organised, no planned group business was achieved or even attempted during the meet.’

Thanks Chris! It sounds very much like a classic American-style messabout, all except for the ritual of serving and eating hominy grits. And isn’t it a relief that there doesn’t seem to have been any need for a race? For more details and lots more photos, see the report at the HBBR website.

This site will be quiet for a few days now as we’re going to be busy – in the meantime, don’t forget it’s International Talk Like a Pirate Day on Friday, even if like me you never manage to keep it up beyond breakfast time.

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The Three Brothers – a coble from the Yorkshire coast

There aren’t many sailing cobles left, and so it’s great to see that the The Three Brothers is on the water in the harbour at Bridlington, and being sailed and cared for by Brid’s own Bridlington Sailing Coble Preservation Society. Built in the town in 1912 at a cost of £75, for many years she was a fishing coble as well as a pleasure vessel during the summer. Cobles converted readily to motor power, but The Three Brothers is now refurbished as a traditional East Coast sailing coble and is sailed regularly by local Naval cadets and members of the Society.
For more on the Society:
If you can add to this story – perhaps links to more photos, details of the restoration or the boat’s history – please email us at gmatkin@gmail.com . It would be great to be able to add something to what’s currently online.

The boats of Working Sail

Working Sail’s designs are based on the lines of 19th century pilot cutters from the Isles of Scilly, a group of islands in Cornish waters lying at the entrance to the English and Bristol channel. They are said to make excellent yachts due to their excellent seaworthiness and sailing performance. In a way, the fact that pilot boats evolved these qualities should not be surprising: as pilot boats need to be very capable, weatherly and fast in order to make sure their pilot reaches the incoming ship before its rivals.

I’d just like to add that while Lulworth (next post down) makes my jaw drop, the boats of Working Sail below quicken my pulse much more. The boat below is Ezra.

For more from Working Sail:

Ezra, built by Working Sail