Ben Bolt S48 – Sailing Sunday


BEN BOLT S48 – Sailing Sunday
photo ex Gillian Williamson

Today’s post is of the mullet boat Ben Bolt when she was owned by Gillian’s father Tom Hollows.

Gillian & Tom would love to know what happened to her & if she is still around today.

ps sorry about the poor photo, must have been a photo taken off a framed photo, a bit of reflection going on 🙂

Robin Elliott Update

Whisk Martinengo maintained that Ben bolt was in fact a Rudder cat-boat design built by Arthur Perkin(s) and I have no cause to doubt him. He was right about so many other things. Many Rudder designs were appropriated by local yachtsmen and modified to local needs, the cat-rig itself never finding favour here apart from small centre boarders such and the Tauranga (P-class) or the Zeddie.

Here is all I have of her owners. No mention of Tom Hollows but there are plenty of gaps in the registered dates so he could be there somewhere.

What date is the photo? I see she’s flying an RNZYS burgee and I seem to recall her being on the register of the Squadron post war, but I can’t fine my old RNZYS year books to see if I missed something.

A. Perkin 1922/23+? A. (F.) Glover (Grover?) 1925?/30+?; A. Sainty & Others 1931?/33; S.V. Cunningham 1933/34+? ; Brown (Whangarei) 1939?/40+?; R.M. Allen (Whangarei) 1945+? ; D. O’Donoghue (W’rei) 1948?/50+?

NZH 30/1/1940: Racing Onerahi Regatta
SS May 1949: Racing with Whangarei CC
NZYB Sep 1978: G.F. Brookbanks says he owned her before WW2.

Update: Gordon Brookbanks owned her in the 1935/36 season.

16 thoughts on “Ben Bolt S48 – Sailing Sunday

  1. PS Like many other yachts of the time, BEN BOLT was named after a popular racehorse (and because there was another Rudder-type 16 footer BEN MACHREA)

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  2. Note: the short passage I quoted from SB I used somewhat out of context and could, would, be misleading.
    Really enjoyed the discussion as I feel these sweet little yachts and their part in NZ history could easily have been misconstrued were it not for the research Harold and Robin put in. And yes I shall probably repeatedly promote their book.
    Thanks for showing us the photo Gillian.

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  3. PS Artie Perkin DID build BEN BOLT in 1921 from a Rudder SEA DUCK design of c1916. She was 16ft x 8ft, so was pretty sturdy. Perkins was a real craftsman, a staircase builder, so a small yacht was little challenge. He later built a couple of fine little yachts, one also of American inspiration, HAPPY DAYS (1948) and ST. GEORGE, a Dragon type designed by Roger de Quincy (1951). Artie also did most of the work on Greer’s TAINUI (B15) 1935.
    There was an another Rudder-type 16 footer in Auckland, BEN MACHREA, built in 1911.

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  4. I have the following notes on various Hollows:
    1925-28+? 14-footer (Star Class?), Ranger, T & N. Hollows Whangarei
    1946 Waialae, L-29, B. Hollows Whangarei
    1963 Esma, H-4, T. Hollows Whangarei

    So …. is that Ben Bolt photo taken in Whangarei then?

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  5. Alan, Pam is quite right to pull you up on calling a 16 footer a “mullet boat”. That’s non-negotiable. Mullet Boats were Restricted classes in 2 foot steps from 20ft up to 26(+28) ft. Robin was probably too polite (or world-weary) to point this out.
    “A sixteen footer of mullet boat configuration”, maybe. Next we’ll have 14 footers as mullet boats!
    ……………..like Ted Fitzgerald’s SWIFTSURE, which has left my front yard and is finally in good hands being restored. He used to cruise her to Coromandel and the Barrier with his two daughters!
    The pic looks as if it’s in the Rangitoto Channel and she’s flying a Squadron burgee. It’s a colour photograph which puts it post WW2. The most likely candidate for ownership when this pic was taken is R.M. Allan who was a Squadron member 1946 onwards. But he lived in Whangarei so did he bring her down to Auckland at some stage or is this somewhere around Whangarei??
    She was 2nd in the Auckland Anniversary Regatta 16ft race in 1950. My guess is that we’re looking at 1950 and a classic trip down the coast in a little centreboarder.

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  6. Whisk Martinengo maintained that Ben bolt was in fact a Rudder cat-boat design built by Arthur Perkin(s) and I have no cause to doubt him. He was right about so many other things. Many Rudder designs were appropriated by local yachtsmen and modified to local needs, the cat-rig itself never finding favour here apart from small centre boarders such and the Tauranga (P-class) or the Zeddie.

    Here is all I have of her owners. No mention of Tom Hollows but there are plenty of gaps in the registered dates so he could be there somewhere.

    What date is the photo? I see she’s flying an RNZYS burgee and I seem to recall her being on the register of the Squadron post war, but I can’t fine my old RNZYS year books to see if I missed something.

    A. Perkin 1922/23+? A. (F.) Glover (Grover?) 1925?/30+?; A. Sainty & Others 1931?/33; S.V. Cunningham 1933/34+? ; Brown (Whangarei) 1939?/40+?; R.M. Allen (whangarei) 1945+? ; D. O’Donoghue (W’rei) 1948?/50+?

    NZH 30/1/1940: Racing Onerahi Regatta
    SS May 1949: Racing with Whangarei CC
    NZYB Sep 1978: G.F. Brookbanks says he owned her before WW2.

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  7. Psst! Hey Al, be very carefull calling her a mullet boat, you’ll be severely reprimanded for doing so. Nows your chance to change it before THEY wake up…
    Aww hang on I have THEIR bible here and they are calling them ‘miniature mullet boats.’
    … A great number of these were not “open boat” 16’s at all but small, ballasted miniature mullet boats, some complete with bunks,lockers and all cruiseing mod cons….
    SOUTHERN BREEZE A history of Yachting In NZ
    You could get the book, not you Al you just need to read your copy Or chat to Robin, he’s nice or Harold he’s not bad either.
    Good luck with finding Ben Bolt, if she doesn’t show you do however have the most gorgeous photo of her. 🙂

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