Maire – Where Is She Now

Kawau Island 1950’s
1954 ex K Ricketts
Early 1980’s
Post 1989

Maire – What Became Of Her

Woody Greg Philpott is on the hunt for the ex work-boat Maire, Greg has pulled together the below intel on the vessel but the trial drys up late 1998 >> on wards. Greg would also like more inset into when she was operating in Auckland in the 1960’s/1970’s. Have a read and let us know if your are able to close the story off. 

Maire was built by Roy Lidgard, in his boatbuilding shed in Smelting House Bay on Kawau Island around 1949. She was approximately 42 feet long and originally powered by a 4 cylinder, 88hp Kelvin diesel.

Maire was used by the Lidgards for their own use, towing and workboat activity mainly to tow logs from the Coromandel and barges of ships dunnage that had been milled by the Lidgards on Kawau Island for supply to Union Steam Ship Company ships in Auckland.

She was acquired in the mid 1950’s by Alwyn (mostly called Allan) Horsfall who was then the owner of the Mansion House property on Kawau Island.

It looks like she ended up in Auckland for much of the 1960’s and 1970’s and ownership possibly rested with a Theo Brian Thomas who was based around Panmure. From there Marie was sold to Andrew Paterson who converted her for charter fishing use in the 1980s and operated her firstly out of Sandspit and later out of Whitianga. During his time of ownership of Maire, in July 1981, Paterson removed the Gardner engine and gear box to install a GM motor and also changed the wheel house windows giving them a forward rake.

Marie was sold in 1985 to Neil Hopkins who also operated her out of Whitianga along with his son Grant. Next owner was Ross Packer who owned her from 1996 until 1998.

It is at this point that the trail goes cold; she was sold and believed to have been relocated up north to either Mangawhai or Mangonui. And her name was changed. At one point, one of the previous owners was contacted by the Marine Department questioning why all identifying pieces from the boat (life rings, name board etc.) had been found on a beach at Great Barrier. She was also later apparently seen up on the hard at Te Atatu as an unfinished project.

INPUT from Grant Thomas 

I had also been wondering what had happened to Maire. My Dad was Brian Thomas and he bought her off Horsfall approx. 1962.

I never realised she was originally used for towing etc but that would explain the extra lower belting etc. We owned her for 10 years and used her as a snapper fishing charter boat in the weekends plus went cruising on her in the early years. I was told that Horsfall sold her as she drew too much for the Sandspit run. Lidgards then built the Kawau Isle which looked just like the Maire but less draft.

Maire was 40 foot and drew 5 foot 6″ but 6 foot steaming. She was very slack bilged and use to roll  badly. We kept her up the Tamaki River at Waipuna Rd on the jetty Dad built. We used to slip her at Owen Woolleys yard but she was 20 tons and really too heavy for that slipway. So Dad built his own slipway which is still operating today. I have a great photo of her on the slip.

We did all sorts of commercial work with her, she was a very capable vessel and she was always kept well painted.At the same time we owned the HDML Alert and so there was always a huge amount to do. I spent most of my younger years working very hard trying to maintain these two boats. We also ate a hell of a lot of fish as my Dad was a top fisherman and Maire was a popular boat to charter.

INPUT from Colin Silby

Maire was sitting awaiting repairs shall we say at the Te Atatu boating club when sold. The new owner renamed her Lola May after his mother and sailed her down to Christchurch. On her return back up she settled on a sand bank off Waihi. As the tide dropped she lay over and flooded. I was involved in her salvage and brought her to Westpark where she was on sold.

ECHO + Woody Beauty Parlour 

ECHO + Woody Beauty Parlour 

Recently I was sent a link to David Smith’s FB where he showcased the 2 photos above of the 1935, 32’, Les Coulthard built launch – Echo, moored in Parekura Bay in the Bay of Islands.

Echo has graced WW before – check out this link for a look below  https://waitematawoodys.com/2017/10/27/echo-a-peek-down-below/

I WILL BE EMAILING OUT DETAILS ON THIS SATURDAYS WATERFRONT WOODY PICNIC TO EVERYONE THAT HAS RSVP’ed – Weather is looking great 🙂

Today a snapped the photo below of the yard at The Slipway in Milford – a nice selection of woodys getting some TLC.

Left > right – my own Raindance (my lips are sealed as to why I’m hauled out again), then the recently changed hands – Rehia, the 1939 Colin Wild built 36’ launch, in for some long-overdue differed maintenance.  Link to Rehia here https://waitematawoodys.com/2021/12/18/rehia-finds-a-new-home/

Then – Awarua, the 1947, 36’ Roy Lidgard built launch – also owned by the owner of Echo. One more and he will officially be a collector 🙂 Awarua is nearing the end of an extensive refit and whilst you can’t see it in the photo, is sporting a dazzling Jason Prew paint job. View more of Awarua at this link https://waitematawoodys.com/2017/04/03/awarua-a-peek-down-below/

Maharatia (Anita Bay / Te Repo Repo Relaunched

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MAHARATIA RELAUNCHED
 
Last week in the WW inbox up popped a note from Troy and Dave Searle the owners of the 1947 Roy Lidgard built – Maharatia, the subject line said “Maharatia (Anita Bay) Update”. Well woodys that was an understatement, I can report that Maharatia has been relaunched 🙂
Firstly excuse me while I rewind – back in August 2015 Paul Drake sent me a single b/w photo (c.1960’s) of a rather large woody on the back of a truck in Taupo. Paul commented that the launch was Te Repo Repo as she was named while operating commercially on the lake.
That single photo (below) ignited one of the biggest chat sessions on WW, there have been over 64 comments posted around the boats provenance.
I attempted to summarize it into one read, which you will find along with a great photo gallery of her past at the WW link below. Make sure you read the comments, start at the bottom 😉 
 
 
Now back to the the Searle’s email – I have reproduced it below – rather a big project – well done guys, amazing effort – email me your T-shirt sizes and I will gift you a couple of WW t-shirts. Hopefully in person at this weekends Mahurangi Regatta.
 
“Well finally after a 4 1/2 years restoration we have relaunched Maharatia.
Last Wednesday (8th Jan 2020) Boat Haulage safely transported her up to Dockland 5 in Whangarei from the boat shed at Omaha. 
She is now berthed in Marsden Cove Marina
Colin Brown, Josh Hawke and owner Dave Searle have worked hard to help bring her back to a very solid representation of her former glory.
Just a brief overview of the restoration work
– Replaced 23 frames in hull
– Replaced garboard plank
– Replaced all keel bolts
– Replaced all through hull skin fittings
– Re-corked hull
– Replaced worm shoe
– Rebuilt shaft logs
– Rebuilt rudder logs
– New diesel tanks 
– Motors (2 x 6LX Gardner) rebuilt by Shaw diesels Ltd
– Replaced all fuel systems, lines and filters.
– Complete rehire and re-plumbed.
– All new toughened glass windows
– New dash panel, gauges and instruments
– New Interior, saloon and galley
– Raised and built new roof to increase headroom by 80mm
– New shower/head room built in.
– New capping on rail
– New exhaust system
– All porthole windows removed, new glass and seals fitted.
– 2 new hatches made. Fwd cabin and roof top.
– New anchor winch
– Aft deck, seating and storage compartments made and hatch to lazarette installed.
 …and Lastly a full repaint.
 
Looking forward to spending our summer on the water this year! 
We hope to be at the Mahurangi regatta In a few weeks time and catching up with other woody enthusiasts.”
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Hirawanu

HIRAWANU

HIRAWANU

Back in February 2017 I posted a photo (below) of Hirawanu, the 1948 Lidgard bridge-decker & asked the question – WHY? Well thanks to Gerard Dods, the grandson of George Nesbit Dods , who owned her in the 1970’s (& kept her in Tauranga) we now have a photo of her c.1977-78 to she her as she was a designed / built & looking very handsome.
 
Gerard commented that his grand father bought her off the estate of a man from Rotorua whose name was Walter Lee. Walter Lee and his brothers owned a timber business in Rotorua called ‘Lee Brothers’. His son, Colin Lee was a friend of George Dods and to the best of Gerard’s knowledge is still alive and lives in Te Puke. Gerard is not sure how long Walter Lee owned Hirawanu before his grand father bought her in 1974.
Gerard has also questioned the build her, previously on WW we have said c.1948, but he thinks its more like mid 1950s – I’m sure someone can clear that up for us. Harold Kidd is on record saying c.1946, so I would believe that over distant memories. 
Hirawanui is a bigger version of the 1946 Lidgard launch – Monterey, this adds weight to the mid 1940’s build versus mid 1950’s. Monterey is owned my my friends Sue & Mark Edmonds, who have a photo of the Lidgard.  shed, which looked like an assembly line – at the time, old Roy Lidgard was pushing out these boats like peas out of pod 🙂

Thanks to Ken Ricketts for forwarding in Gerard’s comments & photo
Harold Kidd Input – Well HIRAWANU was owned by C.T. Jonas in 1946 as recorded in his RNZYS membership from 1946 to 1948, equipped with a 30hp Lister. In 1952 she was owned by M. Matos. C.T. Jonas was a very well-known yachtsman at the time. He had owned the Coulthard CAROLYN (E61), then had Lidgards build MATATUA (B9) in 1938 and HINEMOA (A1) in 1948. HIRAWANU seems to have filled the brief gap between MATATUA and HINEMOA……all Lidgard boats.
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