Taw/Torridge One Designs Racing off Appledore. 'A Fresh Breeze.'
A limited edition giclee print of 495. 21.5 x 14.5 inches approximately.
A fresh breeze is blowing whipping up the occasional cat's paw as two boats with gleaming cotton canvas sails surge through the azure sea in a closely matched race. Neither has taken a turn on the reefing gear so that the rigging is humming as they dip their side decks beneath the waves sending spray flying over their crews. This is an ideal sailing day and the boats are in their element.
Number 10 is my boat; she is the last remaining Taw Torridge One Design, designed by Norman Dallimore in the late twenties specifically to race on the two rivers. Eighteen of the class were built by J.Hinks boatyard and Waters boatyard of Appledore. Audrey Hinks Gallery sold my paintings. Her husband, Alan, was a ship builder, and his father built these boats.
I have the original contract which specifies that only the best mahogany, teak, oak, elm and larch were to be used, with a silver spruce mast and boom. Iron fittings were specifically barred - instead copper and brass were specified, sails were only to be of Egyptian cotton. All of this was for the handsome sum of £67 for one boat and £63 for five, with a penalty clause of 10/- a day for late delivery!
I have a mooring on the sands at Instow, from which we have set forth on many exhilarating days of sailing. However she was protesting her age and has been out of the water for some while as the keel had split and needs rebuilding. Each time I look at this painting I dream of hoisting the sails, to feel her come alive once again, to feel the breeze in my hair and hear the gurgle of water under the keel as she dips and lifts, surging forward, once again cutting her wake through the sparkling waters of the Torridge.