Salute to… Category

HMS Victory – 250 this month!

There’ve been many famous ships in Britain’s proud maritime history – Mary Rose, Golden Hinde, Cutty Sark, to name but three… but one ship stands head and shoulders above the rest – HMS Victory, now currently undergoing major restoration in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard to ensure her preservation for future generations This month marks the 250th […]

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World’s First Factory Assembly Line

The name of the great Victorian engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel is widely known for his heroic engineering feats but we should also raise our glasses to his father, Marc Brunel, born this month in 1769 – for it was he who gave us the first factory assembly line ‑ and something that was of great […]

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Poetry of the Sea: Part 2

They that go down to the sea in ships, and occupy their business in great waters. These men see the works of the Lord; and his wonders in the deep… — Psalm 107 Some of the English language’s finest poetry has been written about the sea. Here’s some more of my favourites, some are excerpts […]

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Poetry of the Sea: Part 1

They that go down to the sea in ships, and occupy their business in great waters. These men see the works of the Lord; and his wonders in the deep… — Psalm 107 Some of the English language’s finest poetry has been written about the sea. Here’s five of my favourites, some are excerpts due […]

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Ninety-six years’ naval service!

I would have loved to have met Provo Wallis! Throughout maritime history many seamen gave a huge part of their lives to King and Country. In the course of his service at sea, John Balchen saw action in numerous battles against the French and Spanish navies across 60 years and three separate wars. Earl St.Vincent […]

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The Restoration of the Admiral

[To leave a comment or reply go to box at the end of the page] Knowing of my love for traditional wooden boats my father-in-law recently sent me a fascinating little volume edited by Graeme Broxam about the history, recovery and restoration of Admiral, Tasmania’s (possibly Australia’s) oldest commercial boat, now returned to fully operational […]

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The Sea Painters: Turner

Joseph Mallord William Turner, the greatest of the English Romantics and colourists, (1775-1851) was born in London, a stone’s throw from the River Thames. His father (like Tom Kydd’s) was a wig-maker. Although he painted many subjects, water would hold a fascination for Turner for the whole of his life. His seascapes range from peaceful […]

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Sim’s Treasures

[To leave a comment go right to the end of the page and just enter it in the ‘Leave a Reply’ box] Over the decade or so that I’ve been a writer I’ve been privileged to meet many collectors, modellers, academics and historians who share my love of the Age of Fighting Sail. They’ve all […]

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Huzzah: A Toast to Britannia!

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the start of training of British naval officers on the River Dart in Devon. In 1863 the wooden hulk HMS Britannia was moved from Portland and moored in the Dart. In 1864, after an influx of new recruits, Britannia was supplemented by HMS Hindustan. The original Britannia was […]

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Hats Off to Clayton!

[To leave a comment go right to the end of the page and just enter it in the ‘Leave a Reply’ box] Over the years I’ve bought several model kits but sadly never got around to finding the time to build them – and in the end I gave them away. Perhaps this is something […]

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