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This looks to be one of the small North Rivers wherries. Interestingly she is having her mast used as a crane to lift what looks to be one of the lock gates at Coltishall. Not the best quality origina

I'm working on a set of photographs of the Broads from the 1880s at the moment. A very well to do, probably extended family group with youngsters in tow. They clearly visited the Broads on more than o

Don't remember where I found this evocative portrait of a wherry but hopefully you'll enjoy it as much as I do:  

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1 hour ago, riverman said:

Isn't there one buried in your yard at Statham?

There was certainly one buried on my yard at Womack. The timbers used to stick up out of the lawn. She was built by Jimmy Gedge's father, but he could never remember her name.

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On 3/23/2017 at 08:40, quackers said:

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Looking back on this thread, isn't that a wonderful photo?

When you think that all of these vessels were built entirely by eye, with no drawn plans.

I can see an awful lot of Viking history, in that.

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2 hours ago, Vaughan said:

Looking back on this thread, isn't that a wonderful photo?

When you think that all of these vessels were built entirely by eye, with no drawn plans.

I can see an awful lot of Viking history, in that.

As a wise senior boat builder once said to me "Let your eye be your guide" and that's what i say to this day every time i can't find a tape measure!

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Just now, MBA Marine said:

As a wise senior boat builder once said to me "Let your eye be your guide" and that's what i say to this day every time i can't find a tape measure!

As I heard it, there was a second part.

"Let your eye be your guide and the value of your purse, will be the length of the boat".

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According to Roy Clark in Black Sailed Traders - and he should know - the only plans drawn of a wherry were of the Gleaner. She was the last wherry built by Allens of Coltishall and the plans were taken off her after she was built. I knew Clifford Allen in his retirement. He was a lovely man.

Before the boat sheds were pulled down to build houses, he showed me all the boards of seasoned timber complete with all the "crooks" for the mainframes and knees, all laid down in the sheds ready to build another wherry, which in the end, they never built. When the yard equipment was auctioned off, I always wondered what happened to all that wood.

I had only just bought my yard at the time and to help me get started, he gave me all the "greasy ways" out of the sheds. I floated them off the slipway and towed them round to Womack with a cruiser. I was also able to buy his yard tractor with a winch on the back, so right from the start I had all the "necessary" to get the boats out of the water.

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  • 1 month later...

I wonder if this is Albion? The masthead colours are hers, I think. Interestingly her peak has been slackened so I wonder if the skipper is not getting ready to round up into the wind as he manouvres between the mudbanks as he approaches Cobham having just crossed Breydon.

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Hmmm not so sure. Agreed they are her current colours but I seem to recall that the Walkers colours were a light green masthead with yellow and blue bands?

There is no date on this painting but I also suspect that other wherry owners had the red, white and blue masthead colours too.

And yes , she had almost certainly dropped her peak to at least get round the bend.

 

 

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I also notice that she is not flying a Jenny Morgan, or a gate vane. This is a painting, so there will be a lot of artistic licence! I like the way that the tide can be clearly seen running out, by the post in the foreground, so the wherry will wish to slow her speed by dowsing the peak, or "scandalising" so as not to get to the junction too early.

The wind from the factory chimneys is consistent with the set of the wherry's sail and that is good to see, in a painting. I wonder how much of the detail of the Yarmouth skyline in the painting, could still be seen today?

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  • 3 weeks later...

That was The Golden Hinde being moved in 1963 to Camping Boats where she was used as a houseboat for a while. The photo was posted by "fendoff" in another place a few years ago as it was his grandfather who owned Camping Boats and the Golden Hinde at that time. I'll check with him later, but from memory, I think Andrew's research indicated that eventually ended up on the Orwell at Pin Mill but is believed to have been accidently crushed and was broken up. The old postcard below shows her in her heyday at Loynes yard c1934.

Carol

2018-04-09_06-08-33.jpg

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At a guess the wherry mast is just half cocked so he can see where he is going - when they are right down they can be a bit of a pain - literally as it gets in the way of your head and impacts visibility. Easier just to let it go and it will move into that position by virtue of the counterweight.

The winch barrel has been left open so he probably has a bridge or lock to negotiate soon and all he would have to do is pull down on the halyard to bring it down.

Any clue as to where it is?

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I agree with Marshman, as I notice that the forestay is slack.

She is obviously a motorised wherry under way, so probably owned by Hobrough or Thain. I believe the engine was usually a Thornycroft "Handy Billy". And yet she is still fully rigged, with the gaff and sail lying on the hatches. Looks in good condition as well.

A bit of a mystery is that the gaff jaws appear to be still up to the mast, and not pulled back for lowering. They did indeed use the mast at an angle for craning into the hold but I have always thought that must have been exceedingly dangerous, as there would have been very little purchase on the forestay at that angle.

Thank you Peter for another great photo, about which we can only speculate, but will never know what was actually going on.

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We bought this watercolour on ebay last year.  For us the interest is that it is of Barton Turf staithe.  It's by Charles Mayes Wigg and was possibly painted just after 1900. He lived at Barton Turf for a while although I don't know exactly when.

5acb40ed1d145_BartonTurfwatercolour.thumb.jpg.85fc18ec4e00c8c9f5add77fc59a0d16.jpg

He seems  to have painted a lot of pictures that included wherries. Sadly a lot of his work was destroyed when he married later in life - his wife disapproved of him painting!

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Yes Vaughan, that too was my initial thought that the gaff was still attached but looking more closely, I am not sure that is really the case. What you can see clearly is that the mast hoops are still attached as they should be, but looking again I think the gaff is off, and the jaws just lost in the detail. If the jaws were on you would clearly see that and also the gaff itself would be much more visible - look closely and the gaff itself is clearly on the deck and in fact laying across the deck at a slight angle, where it would be.

I think it is just ready to pull down when necessary. Its a very still day so its not half cocked to reduce windage and because of the size of the river, or dyke, it looks to on the upper reaches somewhere, but where?  Few other clues!

But yes, credit again to Mr waller for finding another great shot.

I also like the painting - lovely rural setting depicting a scene easily recognisable today.

 

 

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58 minutes ago, marshman said:

because of the size of the river, or dyke, it looks to on the upper reaches somewhere, but where?  Few other clues!

I was wondering if it was coming downstream on the Ant towards Ludham Bridge (so ready for lowering) with How Hill in the background to the left in the photo. The trees and undergrowth would look very different nowadays.

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I was only thinking the the other way. He has gone under Spa Common and is on his approach to Little London and the high wooded ground in the background is the Witton Common end of Bacton Woods.

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I am reliably informed that the Wherry is the Ella, the last trader ever built. She was motorised almost from the start and as a result , the gear was probably only used when convenient - probably not a lot!!

I suppose it is a bit like the option of taking the horse and cart or one of those new fangled motor vehicles - my guess is most would take the latter!!

The picture is probably part the original Boardman collection and with this in mind, is probably taken on the Ant as surmised, although as Chris has said, she did regularly trade up the NW & D canal.

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We lived in Bramhall (Cheshire) from the late 1950s until 1979.  Our next-door neighbours were the Kent family.

Knowing that we visited the Broads a few times old Mrs. Kent produced an photo album from the 1930s with several photos of their family holiday on the Broads - IIRC they had hired 3 wherry yachts, one of which was "Olive" (her father had been Lord Mayor of Manchester...).

I think one story goes that they went to Ludham village in order to buy meat for the whole troup.  The butcher's wife said that she's have to get her husband from the pub but Mrs. Kent's father was also a butcher & offered to cut the meat, have the shopkeeper's wife weigh up & they'd be on their way.

Two of Mrs. Kent's sons founded Kents Pies in Manchester and occasionally a packet of pies would appear over the fence...

 

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