Why a Wooden Boat?
Since my childhood and my very first holiday on board a boat on the Norfolk Broads, I’ve been passionate about The Broads and boating. But it has to be a wooden boat for me. Over the forty years that I’ve been visiting The Broads, I’ve holidayed on many different hire craft of varying designs and materials from a number of different yards. Although I’ve enjoyed my time afloat aboard those boats there was always something missing from the experience when compared to my childhood holidays. The thing that was missing was a wooden boat.
A wooden boat, to me, is a ‘proper’ boat. It smells of wood, diesel and water. Wood has a life of its own. The material moves with the weather, it creaks and it talks. It has a grain and, like a living creature, can be stroked the right way and the wrong way. It breathes. Spend time on board a wooden boat and you will soon realise she has a personality. Unlike her modern ‘plastic’ counterparts a wooden boat feels totally different. She’s more solid, stable assured and forgiving. Above all, no matter her design, she has a total air of ‘boatness’ about her.
My first holiday afloat was on board the Y639 Captain XII from Broom’s boatyards in 1972. I can remember thinking to myself way back then that ‘when I grow up I want a boat, a big wooden one like this!’. So now I have one. Royal Tudor. And we are currently restoring her.
Excitement abounds at the moment as Royal Tudor will be back afloat in the next week and ready to make her first voyage soon after that!