‘Constance’ .2: Launch
Down the ramp in Rowhedge on the River Colne
In my previous post on Constance I shared several photos of the building of Dick Wynne’s Albert Strange Wenda. Here we see the result and her launching. Here’s Dick on Constance‘s launch:
On Saturday 8 July CONSTANCE, a traditional clinker rendition of Albert Strange’s much admired but seldom built Design No 45 WENDA of 1899, slipped into the waters of the River Colne at Rowhedge in Essex, across the road from builder Fabian Bush’s yard. With the aid of a sweep Fabian and I got her alongside the little quay to step her mast and rig her with the help of family and friends, and by next day were able to sail her past the crowd assembled for the annual Rowhedge Village Regatta to applause well-deserved by her builder.
And here some comments from Phil Bolger via the ASA weblog:
Bolger on CONSTANCE
August 10th, 2006 by Dick Wynne, London
Readers may be aware that the working plans for Albert Strange’s Design #45 WENDA were developed for WoodenBoat magazine by Phil Bolger about 20 years ago, in response to strong interest from the magazine’s readership. Both Fabian Bush and I have corresponded with Phil during the building, and on receipt of some photos of her on the water which I sent him, Phil wrote back:
“Thank you very much for the photos of your lovely Wenda (CONSTANCE). They all delight me, especially the one showing her nestled into a mud berth, and those showing the beauty of a canoe stern.
My compliments to Mr Bush, and to Mr Hall as the cut of the sails looks extremely nice. Watch out for that added halyard outside the jib roller. I had a traumatic experience with such an arrangement when the sail was allowed to thrash, rolled the second line into itself, and would not go in, out, up, or down, in the mid-watch and a rising wind in the middle of the Med.”
I plan to move the lower end of the spare halyard to the foot of the mast, where it will be out of the way yet available if needed. I doubt that loss of the wire forestay through the jib roller would result in danger to the fairly short, keel-stepped mast before the spare could be deployed.
[Postscript — Phil Bolger also did us proud with a double-page spread in the October 1 (2006 ed.) issue of Messing About in Boats — Ed]
You can access many more photos as well as informative articles on Albert Strange boats, designs, painting and stories, and boats by his contemporaries, on the ASA weblog .
Next up, first sail et al.
In the meantime, visit the ASA blog for more Strange boats, and there’s also a new kid on the block, started by Dick and others from the ASA, canoeyawl. org …go! ( more on this later)