details / words from Harold Kidd. photos ex Ken Ricketts ex Brian Worthington
Winsome II was built by Lane Motor Boat Co in 1924 for David Teed, the Mayor of Newmarket (after whom Teed Street is named) with a 100hp Stearns engine and named Maude T (about the 4th of that name). Teed died in 1925, prematurely, and his estate sold her to Captain Emanuel who renamed her Latex (a very long story there). Emanuel sold her to W S Pratt, the manager of the Northern Roller Mills in 1931 and she was bought for the RNZAF in 1941 for service at Tauranga, a secondary seaplane base. She was sold by the Crown in 1946 to Andrew Donovan who removed the, by now clapped out, Stearns and replaced it with a brand new 1946 Chrysler 8 cylinder marine engine, renaming her Winsome after his daughter but added the “II” when he realised that the Pickmeres still had Winsome in Whangarei.
Andrew kept her for many years. He died in 1989. She went to Whangarei where she was kept in the Town Basin. Then she was sold to Havelock where I saw her recently, still in splendid order.
When Andrew registered her on Lloyds Yacht Register in 1964 he put down that her designer was W. Hand, the famous American yacht and powerboat designer of the twenties and thirties. No mention had ever been made of that before but there is likely to be more than a germ of truth in the claim in that US yachting mags like Rudder and Motorboat and Yachting were avidly followed by New Zealanders, providing more relevant models for our waters than, say, the English mags. Certainly, it is likely that the design for Maude T/Latex/Winsome II was lifted from a Hand design published in such a US mag and that US “look” was faithfully reproduced.
Despite what the Register of British Ships says, Pratt did not own her through to 1941. She was owned in Tauranga by D Cambie from about 1935 onwards and used for gamefishing which is why she was taken over by the RNZAF for Tauranga work in 1941 as a local launch in good nick, I imagine.
Note – Winsome II has been featured before on ww but with poor photos – the above photos warranted an updated post. Alan H
12/03/2015– a recent photo below of her in Picton marina wearing her WW II livery.
The photo below from the Northern Advocate, Monday, February 12, 1973 was sent in by Judy Donovan, Andrew Donovan’s daughter, it shows Winsome II starting in the first Bay of Islands international billfish tournament. The start was a ‘Grand Prix’ style e.g. a drag race 🙂