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Guest sirdar

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Hi all

for the anoracks among us. Before you start I include myself in that group so no trying to put a target on my back.

What is this? And where was she built?

Regards Sirdar

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Hi Sirdar

As your user name indicates this cruiser is of the "Sirdar" class built by Banhams of Cambrigeshire...Altered somewhat around the wheelhouse to what I remember them...In 1962 on our first holiday in Broadland I remember there being 5 in the class and were operated under the name of Norfolk Holiday Boats.

As to where they were built I would have to guess Horning but may be well wide of the mark there...However a nice boat as most Banhams that I can remember were

Regards...Terry :Stinky

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Well done Terry.

She is Emerald. One of Banhams Cambridge fleet of hire cruisers designed to the Sirdar plan. Same age layout and build as the Horning Sirdars, but built by Banham in Cambridge for the Fens hire fleet. My boating addiction started as a child At h c Banham Horning , which later became Norfolk Holiday boats after the death of " Bert" Banham. We hired Sirdar class ( Hence my name) and the larger Monarch class through the fiftes and sixties as a family. I think four of the five built Broads Sirdars are still around the broads the fifth being on another waterway. There is only one Monarch left. A real beauty and credit to her owner and she is usually in Horning nearly opposite the site of Banhams main Yard which you probarbly remember was next to the Staithe.

Well done!!

Regards Sirdar

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Here you go Terry and all.

A piece of Banhams and Broadland history. The Monarch Photographed by her owner after a visit to Woods yard

in 2008. 43 feet of sheer beauty and class.

Regards Sirdar

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My Uncle and his family often had Monarchs or Sirdars whilst we nearly always went with Landamores.

The first picture is Monarch with our Vestas on the Horning Ferry moorings before the pub had been rebuilt, secondly I cannot decide wether this is a Monarch or a Sirdar, thirdly definitely Monarch with the mother and fathers pride and joy on Horning Staithe in 1946.

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Hi Springsong

Your second pic is a Monarch. I would say she is to long for Sirdar class but she also appears to have the opening doors at the stern. Monarch had steps up from the rear cabin to small doors leading to the stern deck. Sirdar did not. The surviving Monarch has been altered and these doors have been replaced by a window. Fantastic photos though thanks

cheers Sirdar

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Hi Sister Sue.

I have not been aboard Monarch since her Banhams / Norfolk Holiday Boat days , Although I have seen and admired her over the last couple of years. Banhams fitted their boats out to a very high standard using quality materials and I gather Nigel has altered the interior slightly making her even more spectacular.

Emerald (The Cambridge Sirdar) pictured at the start of this thread was up for sale last year near Cambridge and I was tempted. Emerald never was a "Broads Boat" but she would look at home there. Also that would appeal to my sense of humour. I can imagine Craig of data base fame going nuts trying to figure out where the extra Sirdar came from !!

cheers Sirdar

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Hi Sirdar

I find it truly amazing at how much interest can be created from one picture and would like to pass on my thanks to you for posting it...

It is this type of subject that really gets me interested...Being an avid Broads Man from my first visit in 62 at the age of 13 I Just love any input that deals with Hire Cruisers and in particularly Old/Ex Hire Boats...I must admit that my first thoughts on seeing your pic was that it was one of the Norfolk Sirdars and with the passage of time had been subject to a few minor alterations...so a real surprise to find that I was totally wrong...but the classic lines of her stand out a mile..lovely to see :clap

As for the "Monarch"...Speechless comes to mind :love ...What a beauty..I have seen it at Horning whilst on the river but it has always been under covers. Do you by any chance know what happened to the other 3??

BANHAMS...certainly a name associated with Broads History...any knowledge you have of this family business I would be very interested to hear

Springsong

Smashing photographs...Thanks for posting...Would love to hear more of your time with LANDAMORES...Another company with classic Broads Boats and heaps of Broads History

Best Regards....Terry :Stinky

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Hi Terry.

Thanks for the comments.

There were two brothers...... H B Banham, known as Alf. And H C banham, known as Bert. Their original yard was on the River Cam ( Cambridge) and was one of the two oldest and historic yards on the river. They built quality cruisers for the private market and from that thier own hire fleet, The Sirdar class being the largest i think. No Monarchs on the Cam!! As a University city boatyard they also built rowing skull for the Uni squads. Many of these skull classics are still held by UK rowing clubs, and some even found there way to USA where they are prized as vintage classics. To my knowledge the Horning yard was run by HC ( bert) and thier fleet of cruisers included Monarch, Sirdar, Planet, Frivolity, Sultan , Roach, Dandy, Ranee. HC ( Bert) died in 1960 from that point the Horning yard changed name to Norfolk Holiday Boats. In 1966 they were bought by Caister Holdings and the fleet became merged with Southgates . The Banhams mainyard from which the hire fleet ran was immediatly next to the Staithe . Upstream of Percivals.At some point a good offer was obviously made for the yard and this was demolished and housing built on the site. All that remains now is the dinghy " cut" right at the end of the Staithe.where the beautiful rowing and sailing Dinghies were tied on turnaround days. The Cambridge yard Carried on until the early seventies when that too was sold to Pye of radio fame who were a Cambridge based company. Under the name of Pye marine the yard was eventually also sold off and the site developed for housing. All that remains now is a road called Banham Close . Named after the yard and HB (Alf) who was a city Alderman. Re the other Monarchs. No trace can be found of them. They have either been moved to different waterways or lost.I remember seeing one called Tistar under private ownersip near Wroxham in the eighties. One I know was for sale in the Eighties through Percivals when they had thier brokerage near Colin Faceys. Freedom which was a sister to Monarchs but with minor hull differences and slightly different layout was burnt out on Oulton Broad. Her hull was saved but all other areas were destroyed. She was towed back to Horning By a gent I think called Mr Reeve who is now a foreman at Hebert Woods and cut up. So of the four Monarchs plus Freedom Only the one remains. The gent who towed Freedom back to Horning and who is now at Woods worked on Monarch when he was at Banhams and still looks after her now!! I have attached a pic of Bantab which was a yacht built for HC wife, whose name was Tabatha taken last year. Also a pic of Venus. She was one of six Planet class cruisers built and operated through the Horning hire fleet. Hope you like them

cheers Terry. Regards Sirdar

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Ooopps forgot to attach pic of Bantab

mmmm Cant get the picture of Bantab to upload. Try this for size. Brunette by Banham Cambridge

mmm theres a boat like that in my boatshed in Wroxham :) its a beauty a real beauty, it been up for sale for the past 6 months.

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Hi all,

still keeping with the Banham theme, its a long shot but does anyone know anything about a Banhams yacht named 'Hornet'? I have managed to obtain an entry from an old catalogue and would be interested in learning more about her and her sister, and what became of them. My father hired the boat over a number of years during the sixties, unfortunately I was too young to take much notice,

cheers

Mat

PS agree about Monach, she is a real beauty :clap

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Hi Perfect Lady

mmmmmmm Hornet. They were a class of two very unusual yachts built by Banhams. They were unpowered. Built to a similar design as Banham traditional Yachts ie Harlequin class. The striking thing about them.................. they were about 30% larger than any comparable yacht. Amost as if they had been on steroids!! I only know that one was hauled out and burnt on the Southern Rivers couple of years ago. The other just vanished. they were beautiful boats but so large and unpowered they must have been hard workto quant. Little info but I hope that helps.

Regards Sirdar

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Hi Terry.

Heres another ex hire cruiser for you to look at. Not Banhams , but thought you might like her. Shes an ex Powles Star class from the thirties. Sorrento Star. She left the Broads a few years ago and now lives on the Thames

Regards Sirdar

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Hi Sirdar

You have really come up trumps with your info and pictures. Your knowledge of Banhams has really impressed me and the pics are superb...Thanks for that :clap

As my main interest over the years has been Broads Hirefleets your explanation about their business has enlightened me no-end...I only knew that the yard at Horning was running under the Norfolk Holiday Boats flag but not that it was still in the Banham family untii 1966.

From your records you obviously hold the Banham name very dearly. Your hols in the 50's must have been great..I know ours were in the 60's...No T.V's when we first went and a true adventure. Still loving it today.

As you may have found elsewhere on the forum I am a Richardsons Man...As your user name is associated with Banhams mine also is associated with Richardsons...Hence Broadlander 3 may alltime favourite cruiser.

cheers for now...Terry

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Hi Terry.

I have a suspicion that when Bert died in 1960 Banhams Horning was taken over by another yard. Might even have been Percivals . Apart from the name change to Norfolk Holiday Boats there was little change in trading style. The yard still appeared to be " Banham". The only change apparent was the red flags on the hull had a white shield with letters HCB on. These were changed to NHB. I think It was the Caister holdings purchase and the subsequent merging of the fleet with Southgates that really sounded the end. The Monarchs had the red "Woods " style star on the bows. And eventually Sirdars all ended up at Jenners of Thorpe under the Name Smuggler1-5 and from there to Herbert Woods. Richardsons also are one of the historic yards of the Broads and I can understand your affection for thier timber beauties. Broadlander Fulmar merlin etc. Lovely old boats. For me Banhams in the fifties early sixties were the source of great holidays and fun. A different world to London as a kid. I learned to sail there and had a fantastic time. The Broads are a magic place and the old boats like yours and others are part of that magic..

cheers Sirdar

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Hi Sirdar,

thanks for the info, Hornets were rather large boats, around 32-34 feet long, my father remembers her as being hard work to quant! If it was in fact Hornet that was broken up on the Southern Broads then both are now gone, the other a reliable source told me had been broken up at Whelptons yard many years ago. I did own for a while 'Elusive' which is a 30 foot Banhams yacht, apparently built in Cambridge for an employee who used to disappear for a few weeks each year. She looks a smaller version of Hornet and similar to the Speedwells, although she is fitted with a fixed cabin roof. The Moons, Golden, Silver etc were smaller versions of Speedwells, having a distinctive sharply rounded roof edge, and Harlequins you speak off were just inboard versions of the Moons.

Going back to the Sirdar class, attached is a picture of Smuggler, which for a long time was owned by some friends in the Vintage Wooden Boat Association.

cheers

Mat

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