LOOKING FOR JAGUAR
photos* & details ex Ken Ricketts, edited by Alan H.
(*photos of Jaguar are ex 8mm movie film so very poor quality)
Jaguar is a very rare craft having started life as a flying boat tender. She is one of 87 built of this base specification by the British Powerboat Co., in Hythe, Southhampton, U.k. in the 1930 >1940’s period. These craft were used around the world both in military & civilian service.
They were designed by Hubert Scott-Paine who owned the British Powerboat Co. The actual architect involved in the project was a George Selman. They were powered by various types & brands of paired engines overseas, but all the U.K. craft had S6 Perkin engines (refer spec sheet above)
In New Zealand the craft were used by the air force for their flying boat fleet during & after WWII & Tasman Empire Airways Ltd (T.E.A.L.). TEAL used them out of Mechanics Bay, for flying boat patrol. All these boats were made of mahogany, with double diagonal planking on the bottom & single diagonal planking on the sides. There were at least 3 boats in the TEAL fleet, one of which had, 2 x Ford V8 engines, one had 2 x Meadows 6 cyl., petrol engines & another with 2 x 4-53 GM Detroits (this one was to become Jaguar, in civilian life).
During the 1950’s the TEAL fleet was under the control of a Mr Arch Tucket, (owner of the 30 foot launch Otazel, photo below). Ken Ricketts family knew Arch Tucket & Ken went out on patrol on the boats a few times.
The boats were sold when TEAL moved operations to Mangere & focused on land based planes.
One of the craft was given the name Jaguar & bought by a Mr Hansen, of The Parade, Bucklands Beach.
Hansen hardly used her personally, but she was in the care of & used extensively, by the a very fine gentleman, the late Jim Ellis, & his family, also of Bucklands Beach, a highly skilled specialist watchmaker, from the mid 1960s well in to the 1970s. She was moored at Bucklands Beach for many years on a swing mooring during this period. The Ricketts were friends with Jim Ellis & they cruised together often, in their launch Flying Scud.
So the question of the day is where is Jaguar today & what became of her two sister ships?
Harold Kidd Update
There appears to be a degree of over-simplification in Ken’s article between the TEAL launches and the RNZAF launches built to the Scott-Paine/ British Power Boats’ 40ft Seaplane Tender design. TEAL’s sole example was built in the UK by British Power Boats. She had twin Meadows engines.
The 3 RNZAF versions were built by W.G. Lowe & Son Ltd in Auckland and were launched in October 1942. They were W44, W45 and W46, powered with twin 6 cylinder 110hp Graymarine diesels, both RH rotation.
W44 went to CAB at Mechanics Bay but went back to RNZAF service in 1955.
A fourth RNZAF version, W88, was built by W.G. Lowe & Son Ltd in July 1943 and is now restored and on display at the RNZAF Museum, Wigram.
The TEAL UK-built boat was taken over by the RNZAF as W6.
A fifth Scott-Paine 40 footer was acquired by the RNZAF about 1952 and given the number W322. In his well-researched article on the subject in the AHSNZ Journal of August 1995,D.J. Duxbury states, “It is thought that this boat originated with the RAF in Singapore, and it appears to be identical to the New Zealand-built control launches.”
If JAGUAR is built of mahogany then she would seem to be either W6 or W322.
A news clipping below ex Harold Kidd from Papers Past – New Zealand Herald – 4 September 1942. click to enlarge
01-07-2018 Update from John Bullivant – photo below shows Jaguar hauled out c.1975, at Bucklands Beach Yacht Club, her mooring in those days was 80m (on the left) from the haul out ramp.