I'm posting some photos of Andrew Wolstenholme's own boat which I took last year at Beale Park.
They have been very helpful to me, even if i've decided to go my own way at times. They are especially useful when it comes to rigging
I found it very difficult to track down a similar stem head fitting, my friend Chris Waite found one in his box of bits.
Andrew's Mast step seems to have a detachable section which is obviously a good idea, mine will be one piece, screwed in place.
I think his transom knee is a bit more angular than drawn on the plans, makes it easier to fit the Stern Sheets well aft.
Those gunwales are fantastic.
I've made my thwart knees open, Its easier that way and maybe gives a lighter feel.
Andrew's Centre-Board case is made from solid mahogany as per the drawings, needless to say i've gone for ply.
That Partner Thwart!
Check out how the breasthook has been done and the knees below, very neat but beyond my patience and ability I think.
Detail of the mast set-up
Below, a general view of the boat, notice the seat riser, its not on the drawings, and I didn't include it but in retrospect i think it would have made it much easier to level up the thwarts. Forward thwart is approx 1" higher due to the rise of sheer.
As I mentioned earlier we made it to Greece and back despite Volcanic Ash and Greek industrial action.
We went to Skopelos which for the un- informed is an Island in the Agean, now famous for being the place they filmed Mamma Mia, although that wasn't why we went, honest. It is a very attractive place well worth the effort in getting there.
To get there you first fly to Skiathos which is the next-door island famous for it's short runway,
I kid you not, you fly in over the sea, up the beach, hit the brakes and hope you don't land in the harbour. Normally you'd then catch the fast-cat over to Skopelos but our holiday rep organised a local tourist boat to take us over saving a long wait, it was a great way to start the holiday.
Down in Skopelos Town harbour there is a great assortment of colourful local fishing boats, most of which still seem to be used.
One in particular caught my eye, just look at that sheer, the nice straight stem and curvy transom, what more could a man want?
An finally! the prize for the ugliest boat in the harbour
this dear little duckling, it would make even the worst efforts of HBBR look great.
A Heron Keeps an eye on things from his vantage point near St Benet's Abbey
After the success of the Lechlade raid last year people have been nurturing plans to have a similar raid tagged on to the end of Barton Turf.
Well I say plans but in fact it was the usual ramblings of the disorganisation known as UK-HBBR.
Turns out there are very few camping opportunities in the Norfolk Broads as most people are self contained in their little floating caravans.
So on Bank Holiday Monday morning with the weather not exactly looking promising a few diehards sat in the dinner hall of BTAC and discussed the options.
It is an amazing sign of the times that, by dint of electronic note-book and I-phone we were not only able to summon up the weather report but also the phone number of the campsite at Thurne, give them a call, and virtually book a pitch for the night without even getting out of the chair.
Polythene Pam and Tim's Canoe moored by Ludham Bridge
So, Phil, Paul, Tim and myself decided to give it a go and head down to Thurne for the night.
I threw some food and my camping gear into my dry-bags and headed for the staithe.
It was blowing up a wee bit as i headed out over Barton Broad so I got a free ride all the way down to the entrance to the River Ant.
First stop was Ludham Bridge where we helped Paul drop Millibee's Mast. Cee Dubbs arrived in his "Stinkpot" cruiser and we all watched the fun as the tourists ducked under the bridge. I actually thought I might have to drop Pam's Mizzen as it's only about 7ft clearance.
Tim helping Paul raise the mast on Millibee,
This is Tim giving Paul a hand to raise Millibee's mast, unfortunately we managed to snap the Gooseneck on her boom.
A Little bit later on we caught up with fellow HBBR member Mark Harvey in his Pandora MkI "Bella" so we stopped for a cup of Tea and a bit of Mrs Harvey's excellent Bannana Loaf. This is definitely the way to travel.
Roughing it on the Broads! More Tea Vicar?
Quite a few Broads Sailing Cruisers passed by after competing in the Thurne Regatta.
Or to give it its splendid full title
The Thurne Mouth Open Regatta.
I am agog!
One of the Broads Cruisers creaming past Pam.
It wasn't far then to the mouth of the Thurne and Woodside Campsite. Originally known as Boundary Farm this campsite has it's own dyke and a very convenient slipway for pulling out canoes.
A couple on a tandem came and camped beside us and were amazed at the amount of gear and luxuries, particularly the amount of wine and cider we had on board and were envious of Tim's camp kitchen. I noticed they seemed to be sharing one cooking pot which also doubled as a plate.
Camp at Thurne, if you look you can just see Gem the wonder-dog getting her daily dose of pills.
We spent a pleasant evening sitting by the dyke watching the sun go down and putting the world to rights.
Next morning we were up and away but not before the farmer reminded us that the office was open and we could pay before we left.
Paul Ghosting away up the dyke with just a whisper of a breeze.
Tim left us to go and do some exploring towards Hickling Broad and Potter Heigham while the rest of us headed for home.
Paul and Phil (with Gem the wonder-dog) nearing Ludham. Watch that speed limit guys!
We had a leasurly paddle back up the Ant towards Ludham. Thank goodness the breeze of yesterday had at least died away although the forecast southerlies which would have helped us home never did materialise.
Paul lowered and raised his mast again to clear the bridge, we stopped for a bit of lunch and then headed off towards How Hill where there are a couple of preserved drainage mills.
Paul Tilting at Windmills
Another stop at Irstead for a late afternoon tea break and then up through Barton Broad on a much calmer day than yesterday, and we were back at BTAC.
A short trip but really quite enjoyable.
The broads is full of tourists and holidaymakers in their plastic floating caravans. The sight of Polythene Pam was very entertaining for some, and quite a few took photographs, to the point that it became mildly annoying.
Somewhere along the trip, Monday afternoon judgeing by the wind direction, this photo was taken by Sue Hines, presumably from a boat, I don't remember seeing her.
Anyway turns out she is a friend of HBBR member Greg Chapman and by the wonder of the interweb and thanks to Chris P who spotted it, here it is.
Sorry I didn't wave Sue!
I think it's brilliant, Pam really looks good even if i do have by usual glum face on.
You can see more of Sue's great photos of the broads including a great selection of Classic Cruisers here.
Well we made it to Greece and home again, and no sooner had we landed than i was burning the midnight oil trying to get ready for the HBBR meeting at Barton Turf.
The list of jobs was endless and as usual when time is against you, everything that could go wrong did go wrong.
However Coot was lifted onto her trailer on the Thurday night and after a last minute dash to the chandlers for more bits, and to Sainsburys for food, with Polythene Pam strapped to the roof and Coot hitched up behind I finally left home at 18.00 Friday evening for the long haul over to Norfolk.
I used to get nervous going round the M25 with Polythene Pam on the roof, now I take it for granted but towing an old second- hand trailer such a long way can be a nailbiteing experience, you listen to every rattle and rumble, and there were quite a few of those.
I eventually arrived at about 23.45 and pitched the tent in the dark. I wasn't last though as Gavin Atkin and Peter Nobes both slipped in after me.
The weather on Saturday was grim to say the least but we got a dry spell long enough to get Coot on the water. With almost no ceremony she was shoved off her trailer and I took her for a row down the cut using a pair of oars borrowed from Ratcatcher John.
I didn't have time to get the sail rig finished, I have nearly all the bits and its just a matter now of getting it all together.
Should be ready for Cobnor in August then!
I'm pleased to say that she handled well and the owner is well chuffed!
Thanks to Chris Perkins for taking the photos.
You can see more Photo's of the HBBR meeting at Barton Broad here