Saturday, 21 June 2014

Hearts of Oak

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to visit the Morecambe Bay shrimper Hearts of Oak (1912) as she lay moored in Douglas harbour here on the Isle of Man. Tony, Ray and Brian were there to welcome us, and told us a bit about her restoration, which has taken a good number of years, as such projects do.
Hearts of Oak is the last vessel built in and sailed from Ulverston, a small town in south west Cumbria, otherwise famous as the birth place of Stan Laurel. In sailing to the island from Ulverston overnight, the crew re-created a crossing well-known to George Quayle and described by him in his 1796 correspondence. Just like George they suffered a choppy voyage; unlike his party, thankfully, they were not reduced to bailing out with a hat box to avoid sinking. In fact Hearts of Oak sails very fast and sweetly too, and she is very elegant to boot. Well worth a skeet, as they say over here.

Hearts of Oak, moored at Douglas breakwater

The crew of Hearts of Oak: L to R, Ray, Tony and Brian

Hearts of Oak on Facebook

The Nobby Owners Association

Hearts of Oak is also inscribed on the National Small Boats Register

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