VertueYachts-July 2019 Newsletter

Stelda running south towards Barbados. Just about now, half a century ago, when all the razzmatazz and the media sensationalism of the Golden Globe Race was more or less dying away, Peter Woolass was completing final preparations for his own singled-handed voyage.  It was not around the world, nor was it a race, but along with a growing number of competent, determined amateur yachtsmen, Peter wanted to see if he could sail across the Atlantic Ocean himself.  The book that resulted from the experience is described elsewhere on this website, and is a…Read more

VertueYachts-April 2019 Newsletter

Last year’s Newsletters were a bit thin on the ground so this year we are starting with some thoughts on how the famous Vertue design might first have been conceived.  I must apologise to both my readers for the dearth of real ‘news’ last year.   Apart from the modest, ‘vertuous’ thoughts that might occur to me from time to time, I can really only pass on such reports as you care to send me about your boats. So please do send me some more, using speedwelltwo@gmail.com ! Andrillot under full sail It is…Read more

VertueYachts-April 2018 Newsletter

Since taking on VertueYachts a few years ago I have been constantly surprised by the variety and diversity of the distribution of these tough little boats across the globe.  I recently totted up how many of the 250 boats to this design we have been able to trace and find it totals about 82.  The lack of precision here is down to the fact that the eagle eye has, from time to time, spotted a vertue from afar, but has been unable to actually verify either her name or ownership! I know there…Read more
VertueYachts – November 2017 Newsletter

VertueYachts – November 2017 Newsletter

Above: Andrillot Sail Plan as redrawn by Uffa Fox. This little gaff cutter Andrillot was launched at the Swanwick yard of Moody Bros. for Richard Kinnersley in the spring of 1936. Although she was later to become known as the first of the Vertue class, her rig was very similar to that of her first rival, Eric Hiscock’s Wanderer II. When the two boats raced each other, and later sailed in company, Andrillot was found to be slightly faster to windward, with her slightly longer waterline length and fuller sections. Eric also explained…Read more
VertueYachts – July 2017 Newsletter

VertueYachts – July 2017 Newsletter

Above: Northam Vertue in California. Here is a sight to gladden the eye of any Vertue enthusiast! Out of the blue I get an email from Scot Copeland on the West Coast saying that he has just bought this boat. He writes: “Hello Roger, I’m glad you replied so swiftly. So, the story goes like this: I’ve always known and respected the Vertue class, to the extent that as a young boatbuilder I enquired with Giles Ltd. about obtaining plans. Nearly 20 years ago I came across this exact boat. She was slipped…Read more
VertueYachts – May 2017 Newsletter

VertueYachts – May 2017 Newsletter

Above: Sally II in Scotland It’s sometimes said that if you collected any half a dozen Vertues together that no two of them would be the same. Well, thanks to some of the many kind people who have been sending in photos and stories to the website while we’ve been on our travels, here’s half a dozen collected Vertues to prove it. Adrian Morgan, boatbuilder, philosopher, historian and muse par excellence, recently sent some new photos of his lovely Sally, ‘vertue’ number 2, and I have to start with this one. Here is…Read more
VertueYachts – December 2016 Newsletter

VertueYachts – December 2016 Newsletter

The thing about a Newsletter is that sometimes there isn’t much news. My VertueYachts inbox has been strangely quiet for the past few weeks which only goes to show that even Vertue enthusiasts have another life around Christmas time, perhaps quite separate from their boats. Of course, for some of us, the search for enlightenment continues, largely unabated, through the winter, and for me this was recently rewarded with the revelation of a proverbial ‘thousand words’ worth of information about Gay Vertue. This rather grubby cover image appeared amid a pile of old…Read more
VertueYachts – November 2016 Newsletter

VertueYachts – November 2016 Newsletter

(Above: Bettina racing in the Trieste Barcolana regatta) When Edwin Mazzanti first told me about the group of Vertues that occasionally sail together around Venice and Trieste I had no idea that the ‘Adriatic Fleet’ represented the most spirited collection of classic Vertues in the world! They not only cruise in company but every year they race together as part of the wonderful Trieste Barcolana regatta, and award a beautiful silver plate to their own champion. This is a great example to those of us who would like to sail together in the…Read more
VertueYachts – October 2016 Newsletter

VertueYachts – October 2016 Newsletter

Last week saw Trieste hosting the famous Barcolana regatta which included a classic yacht division with the ‘Vertue Adriatic Fleet’ appearing yet again. Edwin Mazzanti, who owns the beautiful Elkins built vertue Return tells me that the fleet was also going to include Bettina, Fab, and Jan Gilda. Of course the famous Vertue xxxv is based in that area too, but will not apparently be taking part, nor will the Cheoy Lee built Lan Tao. Edwin keeps Return beautifully and has said he will send a full report about the regatta which I…Read more
VertueYachts – September 2016 Newsletter

VertueYachts – September 2016 Newsletter

Vertues aren’t usually compared to buses, but the sudden availability of second hand boats for sale just now immediately suggests a rethink on this matter. For months now there have hardly seemed to be any on the market, and now we’re awash with quite a selection of distinctive boats, all of them very special in their own way. Last month we saw how Fionn, Varna and Icebird had all come onto the UK market, along with the grp VII Patience. Well, now these boats have been joined by four more wooden boats and…Read more
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