Saturday 31 March 2012

The Matthew

We were gazing out of the window in Fowey when the Matthew appeared around Gribbon head and sailed into the river.

At anchor in the river with St Catherine's Castle in the background this is a view similar to that which might have been seen 500 years ago when John Cabot set out on his voyage of discovery and henry VIII had the fort built to defend the harbour.

The replica of Cabot's ship set out in 1998 to follow the route of his voyage to Newfoundland. Normally based in Bristol docks she was in Fowey for maintenance and a survey at the shipyard in Polruan and will be making her way to London to take part in the Jubilee celebrations on the Thames.

Saturday 24 March 2012


I just love this little day boat, she's dried out on the mud alongside Dolphin Quay Boatyard , sadly there was no one around to ask about her history, but you can imagine her to be comfortable and stable with a heavy metal centre plate, her varnished clinker planking speaks of quality construction.

Wednesday 21 March 2012

Roche Rock

I've been visiting Cornwall for 30 odd years and thought I knew my way around pretty well, but recently the road between St Austell and Wadebridge was closed and we were forced to take a detour via a village called Roche.

As you come over the high ground in the middle of the county about a mile away you can see this building on a rock outcrop Roche Rock. Apparently the building, dramatically perched on top, is a chapel dedicated to St Michael.

The rock itself is about 600m x 300m and 20m hight, various legends and folklore abound.

One story links the rock to Jan Tregeagle a magistrate in the early 17th century, known for being a particularly harsh land agent, darker stories circulated as well, that he had murdered his wife or made a pact with the Devil, after his death Jan is alleged to have found refuge in the chapel.

In another, the rock features in the legend of Tristan and Iseult, an influential romance and tragedy, retold in numerous sources with as many variations. The tragic story is of the adulterous love between the Cornish knight Tristan and the Irish princess Iseult.

Saturday 17 March 2012

Man and a horse

Although a ferry crossing dates back to saxon times, one of the earliest written accounts of the ferry which crosses the river between warsash and Hamble was made in a reference made at a local Admiralty Court in 1493 and again in 1508 when it was stated that:
“The causeway at Warsash was in bad condition, which was to the great annoyance of the King’s liege/subjects who pass by and therefore the men of Warsash were commanded to repair it.”

Later in 1572 local men John Webbe, Henry Osman and Richard Marshall of Warsash and John Dalamor of Hamble, were fined because "at various times they kept travellers who wished to cross waiting for two to three hours"

In 1606 the tarrif for the Hamble to Warsash crossing by ferry was ½d for pedestrian and 1d horse - that's in the days when there were 240 Pennies to the Pound.

Clearly it's gone up a bit since then.

Wednesday 14 March 2012


The daffodils are out, there are more than a few sunny days and rowing down the river doesn't require hats, gloves and thermals. A couple of weeks ago we had temperatures down at 1 degree C now we're into double figures.

Maybe not quite warm enough for the beach,

But the river is starting to come alive, with people getting boats ready for the season and those that either stayed in our got the maintenance done early able to enjoy the good weather, like this local 9TM Hillyard.

Sunday 11 March 2012

Easy Access

There was a bit of hold up as this motorboat was delivered to the Berthon Yard yesterday, situated as it at the back of the old Georgian town access was a bit tricky.

Between parked cars and overhanging trees progress was at a snails pace, but eventually they got through but not before a small crowd had gathered. The final problem was that it was impossible to turn right down to the yard, so the driver turned left and then reversed the 150 or so meters to the yard entrance.

Wednesday 7 March 2012


This delightful yawl appeared on the river a few weeks ago, tucked up in amongst the moorings off the town quay she was difficult to photograph, but once the weather improves and we’re out rowing more often I will be able to have a better look.

I don’t know much about her, but I think I know who the owners are and will find out more when I bump into them.

Saturday 3 March 2012

Daddy's Little Girl

One moment your little girl is shuffling around the garden wearing daddy's "giant" shoes and the next she's all grown up, gone out in the world and able to look after herself.

Bursledon Blogger AKA "A proud Dad"