The top photo of the haul-out area at Okahu Bay, Auckland is dated 1977 and was sent in by Nathan Herbert. Nathan’s eye was draw to the large launch in the centre and he suspects the vessel is the launch – 50’ Dauntless, now residing in Milford Marina, now all white and sporting a different cabin (refer 2nd photo above).
Back in September 2019 I spotted the launch – Marline coming up Milford Creek on-route to The Slipway yard. As it turns out she was being hauled for a heart transplant – a wonderful new Yanmar 120hp was being installed. The top two photos above show here in the ‘creek’. At the time I thought – very nice woody, but ……….. pity about the low rise block of flats on top.
So you can image how pleased I was last Thursday to walk in to The Slipway shed and see a team in the process of demolishing the flats. Marline was built in 1950 by Leon Warne in St. Marys Bay, for his own use. Son Ken gave me a guided tour of the boat and detailed the work in-hand. And she will be returning to a more traditional configuration 🙂 Marline is approx 35’ x 11’ 4’ and draws 3’6”. She had a reputation as ’the party boat’ and once aboard its easy to see way – an 11’+ beam on a 35’ boat makes for a lot of living space.I love the original cabin lights – Leon Warne cast them, son Ken still has the mould……….. now that has got me thinking 😉
The gallery of photos below, ex Ken, give us a peek into her past, as you will see, she was successfully used for Game Fishing for many years, out of Tauranga
I was passing thru Milford last week, so took the opportunity to drop in on the team at The Slipway (Geoff Bagnall’s yard in a previous life).I can report that I was pleasantly pleased to see so many woodys hauled out and in various stages of repair – from the annual bum clean right thru to major refits.The one that caught my eye the most was the 35’ Leone Warne built launch – Marline, more on her on Monday, I now have so many cool photos from her past. The woodys below are at the yard, where possible I have included a WW link to see / read more on each one.
The Slipway yard is one of Auckland’s very few ‘railway’ hail out facilities and both deserves and needs the support of the wooden boating community. If we lose yards like this we will be forced to use yards that tend to have equipment designed for big while plastic boats and that are not wooden boat friendly in terms of planked boats. So woodys support the guys that support us. Contact Jason Prew for details on haul out rates and on-site services. firstname.lastname@example.org
In the top photo we see Waitanguru in the Milford Creek, just off the AW Williams boatyard* in Omana Road, Milford. Waitanguru was a ‘Banshee’ design built by Williams. At the time of the photo the launch was owned by Gerry Dawson, he purchased her off Peter Peterson.
The November 1965 photos come to us from Lew Redwood’s fb and were taken by Dawn Heathwaite.. In the 2nd photo the kids on the jetty are Bill and Ian Heathwaite. Bill Heathwaite has commented that the photos were taken post a successful game fishing trip to Great Barrier Island. Bill’s father is holding the tail of a record breaking yellow-fin tuna he had caught. From recalls it was 135lb on a 30lb line.
The crew are L>R – skipper Gerry Dawson, Roy Heathwaite, Scotty, Alan Odell, Jim and Bruce Woods.
Do we know what became of Waitanguru?
* yard later became Geoff Bagnall’s and is now The Slipway – Milford. Interesting to view the area on the right of the shed that would be developed at the Milford Crusing Club haul-out yard.
CORRECTION : The yard is John Gladdens yard, the Allan Williams original yard was against the road and slip by the bridge. (thanks readers)
DOUBLE CORRECTION: Thanks to Nathan Herbert we learn the the spelling was wrong, the boat is Waitanguru and has featured on WW b4, link below
FYI – the WW section box only works on perfect spelling, so we did not pick this up 😉
My Girl was moored opposite white on road (top right of photo), Walter had a shed there
Trevor Bowman steering with Walter on anchor – Waitangi
Days fishing – Gordon and Syd Brown
My Girl leaving Milford
Milford Cruising Club Yard
MY GIRL’S OLD HOME – MILFORD CREEK IN THE LATE 1940’s> EARLY 1950’s
As I touched on the other day in relation to my own woody – RainDance, its very special when out of the blue you are contacted by someone with details and photos on your boat. It was woody Jason Prew’s turn recently to get the call regarding his 1925, Dick Lang built launch – My Girl.
As I’m sure you are aware WW has rather extensively followed the restoration > launch > cruising log of My Girl so all the exposure has rattled a few memories – this time from Greg Bowman whose grandfather, Walter Brunton used to own My Girl at end of the 1940’s to 1960.
Walter Brunton lived in Castor Bay, Auckland and moved to Russell, in the Bay of Islands in 1950, after Greg’s mother, Elva, married his Dad Trevor Bowman. Like all good relationships in those days – they meet on the water.
When Walter moved north he turned My Girl into a fishing boat (now I know where that smell is from – just kidding Jason). Walter sold fish to the open market and to feed guests in his guesthouse in Russell, named – Arcade Lodge.
Back in those days My Girl had a Gray marine engine, and most years she won the New Year launch race out of Russell.
Greg sent Jason the collection of b/w photos above of My Girl and the Milford Creek, where she was kept in the late 1940’s. The top photo gives you an idea of the amount of dredging required to accommodate the marina that exists today.
It’s a bit cheeky (excuse the pun) but the photo below shows the on-board sanitation methods on My Girl, before inbuilt heads. I know the bucket and chuck it was around but the old rope did the trick – off course helped by the lack of duckboards back then 🙂
WW link below to show the journey My Girl has been on in terms of apperance and the extent of Jason’s restoration. And a photo of her post re-launch heading into Milford Creek or as some of the MCC woodys call it – Wairau Cove 😉
Todays woody is a 30’ Hartley, built by Hughie Wells and launched in 1963. Built from kauri – carvel, with a 9’8” beam and draft of 2’6”.
Her 100hp 6 cyl. Ford diesel engine is unfortunately seized hence her current status on trademe of $103 & reserve met.
Currently located in Akaroa. Could be the makings of a very low entry woodys project.
Party In A Boat Shed
Walked into The Slipway Milfords Christmas party last night and you would have thought you were attending the waitematawoodys AGM, the SWM crew were all decked out in WW t’s. Great old school gathering, caught up with lots of woody boaters.
Stunning smoker/BBQ from Anatole Perry, assisted by Andrew Miller – the spare ribs were to die for 🙂
And yes, I’m standing on a nail box 🙂
K CLASS BOOK WINNER
Incredible number (an all time record) of entries to yesterdays quiz. Slightly worrying that so many of you knew that Flora McKenzie ran a brothel in Ring Terrace, Herne Bay. A few even owned up to having met her 😉
So folks – the winner of a copy of Jenni Mence’s book – K CLASS was Jason Prew
The runner-up prize of a WW T-shirt was Brett Evans
My little launching gift – a bronze good fortune star from Arthur Beale, London.
Well woodys, after nearly two & half years hauled out at the Milford Cruising Club slip, on Saturday afternoon, Nathan Herbert re-launched his 1930, 28′ L. Coulthard launch – Lucinda. A group of approx. 40 family & friends came together to celebrate the event & help ease Luci back into the creek.
A few cold beverages, some bubbles & a good old fashioned kiwi spread – sausage rolls, asparagus bread wraps, bacon & egg pie & a cake – doesn’t get much better my eyes.
In the above photos, you’ll see lots of Nathan sporting a PS (permanent smile) & rightly so, it was after, his day. I apologize for the background noise in the videos, the wind was howling at the time. Remember if you click on the photos, they enlarge 😉
While mooching around the creek I spotted something that I thought I would never see – the ex whale chaser, Rorqual sans her hot-house top, see photo below. It is only temporary as new owner Andrew Miller is half way through a make over that will see her returned to a similar look as before but utilizing the best materials & systems. And if I did not post a photo of Murray Deeble’s wee day boat I would have ended up in the creek 🙂
And its not too late to complete the on-line ww classic boating activity survey – click blue link below
There has been a lot of chat lately about the need to provide pedestrian access across the creek, in the old days there was a bridge, a very tall bridge. It did the trick, but these days a bridge needs to accommodate two mobility scooters side by side & be accessible by the blind. The options that have been tabled are a joke, all we need is another tall bridge. If you are on your scooter or blind or both, I suggest you use the existing footpath, a little longer but a lot safer than any bridge, even a modern one.
The photos in this ww post are from the Milford Cruising Club historical archives & show the area in the good old days. To find out more about the club visit http://www.milfordcruising.co.nz