Teddy – Saved from becoming a children’s sandpit



I was recently contacted by Teresa & Don Windley, who earlier this year purchased the 1936 ketch – Leisure Hour. The Windley’s have just restored a very salty looking little woody. I’ll let them tell the story.

“I was called one day by a mate who said get over here now because my neighbour has just put this dinghy and trailer on the roadside with a free  to take away sign on it . I shot over to to find that my mate had seen the neighbour and just stopped the  removal to become a sandpit. Originally called TEDDY this kauri clinker is reputed to have been built in the early 1920’s  by two brothers, the Michelsons of Dargaville for use as an open outboard powered fishing boat for the Kaipara Harbour. 

The Michelsons had a brewery which was eventually bought out by Lion Breweries in Kyber Pass Auckland. The little 12 foot dinghy was aquired by Lion Brewery with the purchase and promptly painted in the Lion Breweries Orange paint (yuk) Teddys fate was to be on permanent display in the showroom of Lion Breweries for some years. When I was given the dinghy by Brian Martin it had been stored in a lean to for many years was very dry and part of her deck . stem and two top planks on either side were dry rotted due to the bow being exposed sticking out of the lean to.

I have done the repairs where needed, repainted her and she is now afloat and will become our tender for ‘Leisure Hour’ our 1936 Reid built kauri ketch (photo below). Although a little big for a tender she will do admirably to carry us,three Grandchildren, and the family dog when we go cruising.

I would welcome any knowledge to add to this history if anyone has any thing to add to this brief history or early photos. Happy summer boating everyone.”

You can see / read more on Leisure Hour here:


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Leisure Hour – Update





I have been contacted by Don & Teresa Windley, the new owners of Leisure Hour. Teresa & Don purchased Leisure Hour from master boat restorer John Wright and sailed her from Westpark Marina Hobsonville to her new home at Mahurangi Marinas. Built some 82 years ago she is built strong and has strong standing rigging. Her little Arona diesel engine performed well and didn’t miss a beat on the trip. Don told me that they will continue with the good work John Wright started in keeping this lovely old sail boat in good sailing condition, 1st project being rewiring all the internal electrics. This winter a planned haul out will include masts out which need re-varnishing.

Don thanked WW for publishing Leisure Hours story a little while ago that included some of her history from Harold Kidd. The WW story and the trademe ad helped them to make the decision to purchase a classic they could manage to sail together, as they had been looking for some time. It is always nice to hear that WW is helping people discover the classic wooden boating movement.

You can see/read more about her here https://waitematawoodys.com/2017/12/24/classic-vintage-1936-ketch-leisure-hour/

As a bonus today –  below is a link to a 30min video of the Melbourne based classic yacht Sayonara, in Sydney for News Eve 2001 , sent to me by Alan Good – enjoy it’s a cool look back at yachting 17 years ago.



Classic vintage 1936 ketch – Leisure Hour

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Classic vintage 1936 ketch – Leisure Hour

The above 32’ x 9’ beam ketch is named Leisure Hour & was reportedly built by Jimmy Reid in 1936 in his family yard at Sulphur Beach Road Birkenhead, close to the Auckland Harbour Bridge location.

The Reid family being reputable boat builder of vessels in early 1900 in Mechanics Bay area Auckland, had two sons who produced sail and power vessel for notable New Zealanders of that era.

Leisure Hour has been on the harbour for approx. 81 years and is in need of a tender loving owner to take on as a project vessel to keep Auckland boating history alive.

She has had work completed with a tidy up and new paint. Her engine is a two-cylinder Arona diesel, with mechanical transmission and shaft drive.

The current owner on trademe says he has one too many boats and is motivated to sell – so with an asking price of $19,500 Leisure could a perfect entry into the classic wooden boating world J



Leisure Hour – Sailing Sunday

Leisure Hour – Sailing Sunday
photos ex John Wicks

Today’s boat is the 1937 Jimmy Reid built Leisure Hour, currently owned by John Wright & has just undergone one of John’s legendary make-overs. But to quote John Wicks, John W has discovered that sailing isn’t his thing & will remain faithful to his classic launch Jeunesse, so Leisure Hour is for sale. A great opportunity for someone wanting a rather nice little historic keeler.
I’m ‘borrowing’ below some info from an article Harold Kidd & Robin Elliott published on the Reid family & their boats, it appeared way back in 2001 in Boat NZ.

Jimmy Reid started building the 32′ Leisure Hour, his first keel boat, in 1936 & launched her in 1937. Its assumed his father (James Sr.) helped with the design. She was a beamy (9′) ketch & was registered as C41, that later changed to D14. Jimmy did some occasional cruising/racing with Akarana & rarely missed an Anniversary Regatta. He sold her in 1945 & back in 2001 she was moored in the Milford Creek.

So folks – can we fill in some of the holes in her past?

A Question – Neil Chalmers wondered if the building of ‘Leisure Hour’ was inspired by the famous ‘Idle Hour’ sailed by the American Dwight Long . ‘ Idle Hour’ visited Auckland in 1935 during a circumnavigation. The ‘Leisure Hour’ appears to be a similar type to ‘Idle Hour’. Neil dug out his copy of Dwight Long’s ‘Sailing all the seas in Idle Hour’ . His first stop in NZ was at Shakespeare Bay , Whangaparoa , he mentions seeing Mr Shakespeare’s yacht – could it be the CYA ‘Frances’.
Photo below of Idle Hour at Moturekereka.

03-08-2015 Input from Shamus Fairhall

I know Leisure Hour was owned by the Les and Jan Parkinson at some stage in the 1980s. Les brought her in a poor state and put considerable time in to making her sparkle again. Les and Jan were also the owners of our 1936 launch Sequoia in the late 1960s. Sadly Les is now deceased but he was always famous for his restoration skills with old Jags and military jeeps etc through his business Parky Jags. Photo below of Leisure Hour during his ownership and i will pass a link on to Jan as she may well have some detail to add.