Midnight II

THE LAUNCH MIDNIGHT II AND THE CHAMBERLIIN FAMILY OF PONUI ISLAND
I received an email last week from Ross Dawson, a passionate woody fan, Ross resides in Kawakawa Bay and let me know that he had just visited Peter Chamberlin in a retirement home and he kindly gave permission for Ross to take a few copies of photos in his family photo album. Peter’s son David now manages the family farm at Motunau (the South end of Ponui Island).
The launch – Midnight lI according to notes in Peter Chamberlin’s photo album, was a petrol powered launch built for Peter’s father Fred (son of Charles jnr) by Lanes in 1928 and was sold to Ian Chamberlin in 1950, when Fred took delivery of the Colin Wild built diesel launch – Motunau. WW would love to learn more about Midnight II and what became of her.This weekend I will share the story of – Midnight, the Chamberlin’s yacht.
Before we finish today – Ross has a hobby horse he would like to exercise 🙂 I’ll let Ross tell the story

“I want to comment on, what seems to be a common theme whereby Aucklanders from the earliest colonial times right up to the present day, seem to think that privately-owned Gulf islands are a legitimate place to wander at will, help one’s self to whatever is lying around, and to depart leaving behind much more than one’s footprints! The old newspaper articles surprised me that petty theft, and not so petty theft was perhaps as common in 1800’s as it is today.

The first items I noticed, up to about 1900, were advertisements promising rewards for “information leading to the prosecution of persons who had stolen large quantities of standing and cut wood”…probably tea tree I am guessing. ( Auckland used huge quantities of firewood for domestic heating & cooking in colonial times) 

From about 1900 for perhaps 30 years, the adverts changed to dire threats of prosecution for dastardly scow operators helping themselves to beach shingle. (Ted Ashby’s book “Phantom Fleet” gives a good explanation of illegal shingle extraction) 

Other newspaper public notices refer to other problems of shooting of pigs and farm stock. It seems the Chamberlin families might have been justified in having jaundiced views about their mainland neighbours, and it is surprising that they have managed to maintain a reputation of being gracious hosts to visitors and willing helpers to boatees in need of rescue.

Even today, they deserve better from the wider Auckland public. As a long time yachtsman myself, often anchoring in Ponui’s many bays, I am sometimes horrified by the casual way boating people feel it okay to roam over the island, sometimes even with their dogs. Some even think it okay to browse around the farm buildings…do they actually think Ponui is public estate?

And while I am on a rant, where do all the plastic bait bags littering the beaches come from…not accidental discharges from Auckland storm water drains! A great stain on the reputation of the majority of well behaved boating community. My heart goes out to the Island owners who also pay eye-watering land rates to a City Council that does very little by way of public services which we take for granted on the mainland.”

Update ex Ross Dawson – he meant to add – “No criticism intended”

Mahurangi Regatta – Woody Weekend – 196 photos

MAHURANGI 2021 REGATTA –  196 WOODEN BOATING PHOTOS & VIDEOS

WoW what a weekend – perfect weather, perfect location and as always stunning boats. We saw a record turn out for the classic wooden boat parade on Saturday morning – the crowd ashore at Sullivans was a little thin on the ground, but if we are honest, we do not do it for them – its all about us 🙂 , a little like going for a motorbike rumble. We need more events where we just ‘hang-out’ together.

The regatta’s main event – the yacht race appeared to be a big success, the A-Class Logan –  Rawhiti, in the hands of her new owner – Peter Brookes, cleaned up all the major trophies. As has become the norm at Mahurangi races, the results process was a total balls up, it was very dark and late into the night before the final, final results were announced – fingers crossed its all kosher, last year it took days and numerous oops lets try that again announcements 🙂


The big band beach BBQ, was a hit, perfect on all fronts – weather, tide, the band, bbq’s and the people. Given the number of boats in Bon Accord Harbour, Kawau Island, most people headed there on Sunday. The Kawau Boating Boat was bursting at the seams but handed it well. I have split the photos into 4 galleries – Classic Wooden Boat Parade – Yacht Race – Beach BBQ – More (includes Kawau). If I missed your boat, you were somewhere I wasn’t, or in the wrong light , or your’e boats ugly (joking – sort off).
Enjoy a peak at the weekend., click individual photos to enlarge. Next weekend I’m off to the Lake Rotoiti Classic and Wooden Boat Parade –  its a biggie – they have 70+ entries  

CLASSIC WOODEN BOAT PARADE

YACHT RACE

BEACH BBQ

MORE + KAWAU ISLAND

waitematawoodys@gmail.com

Motunau

MOTUNAU
photo ex Nathan Herbert

The above photos of Motunau were taken in Okahu Bay, Nathan reports that Harold Kidd says was built for the Chamberlains & that she is probably a Lidgard. Interested if anyone can supply more details on her. Nathan has a sneaky feeling that her lines show a hint of Colin Wild i.e. a smaller type Haunui.

11-04-2017 Update ex Nathan Herbert – photo below from the G. Riethmaier collection of  Motunau getting her new top 😉

Among the yards at Westhaven G. Riethmaier