Class of March 2008 Launch Day

Fourteen students on the March 2008 course launched seven boats at noon on 10th December – more boats than from any previous course.

The 38 week course started on 17th March 2008; students spent the first twelve weeks developing their woodworking skills (some started with none), painting and finishing, making oars, building clinker sections and laminating the stem sections that make up the City & Guilds assessment pieces (students take the Level 3 City & Guilds 2451 technical exams as well as learn how to build boats) in addition to time in the classroom on theory and deciding what boats to build and lofting them as part of learning how to loft.

On 16th June they went down to the main workshop floor and started the builds; one traditional clinker, three glued clinker, one strip plank, one stitch and glue and a cold moulded wherry spiled to simulate carvel. Two of the boats were designed by Mike Broome, Boat Building Academy Instructor and main Instructor for the March course and two of the boats’ designs came from Mystic Seaport. To say we’re proud of the course’s achievement is a massive understatement. Over the last 38 weeks the workshop has not always been a beachside oasis of peace and tranquillity, but the product of all that energy is superb.

Brilliant sun shone on about a hundred and fifty people who walked the boats down to the harbour. Tim Gedge, Director of the Boat Building Academy, said a few words, followed by the Mayor of Lyme Regis, before the real business of the day began and the boats were launched one by one into the water. They all floated, we all cheered…

The following are just a few of the photographs from launch day and at the bottom of the page are a couple of montages of the photographs Johnny Tyson and Phil Evans, of the September 2008 course, took on the day.