August 16, 2007 at 8:42 am #95677
Here’s real poser.
This was a well known photo in its day, and published in the NZ Herald, of a not so well known yacht just before its start in the stormy Anniversary Regatta of 1960 that wrecked boats and broke masts all around the harbour.
It was also published elsewhere from time to time but by then the boat’s identity had been forgotten.
I have a number of these “almost impossible to identify” type of photos that I can torture you all with.August 16, 2007 at 11:18 am #100757
Looks too short for her, but I’ll guess Hinemoa with a long lens.
Later: Whoops – must have been dreaming – bowsprit! I was transfixed by those brass framed doghouse windows.August 16, 2007 at 9:35 pm #100758
Yeah… my first thought at a glance was a K …..but theres a cutter rig and a short bowsprit in there so I’m thinking that its a 1940’s /50’s boat, possibly even a short ender and smaller than a K? Maybe an early Stewart or Lidgard even. Spray occurred to me but that hull looks finer( and I don’t know the cabin history)August 16, 2007 at 10:16 pm #100759
looks a little H28 ish….. sorta not really tho.August 16, 2007 at 10:29 pm #100760
hmm, it just looks a bit racy for a Woolacott……but……August 16, 2007 at 10:33 pm #100761
Cabin looks a little Woolacott-esk….August 16, 2007 at 10:46 pm #100762
Vesper – is she a Harrison ButlerAugust 16, 2007 at 11:10 pm #100763
can’t see a shelfAugust 17, 2007 at 12:46 am #100764
Neil C wrote:
Vesper – is she a Harrison Butler
That Neil C is far too old and knows too much :D:D:D
Yep Vesper she is.
Built in 1950 by J. Cross & R. Darrach and launched late in December and registered as F-75.
I saw somewhere that she was their own design but at some stage someone fessed up and she is generally known as a Harrison Butler. There was a feature on her in Sea Spray Dec 1950 with drawings, and SS Apr 1951 describes her launching and first cruise.
Subsequent owners were A. Perriman 1954?/55 with whom she got the gun in her division in the 1955 Anniversary Regatta; P.B. & V.B.B. Wright 1955/1961+?
By the mid 1950’s there were a helluva lot of anomalies in the Auckland C, E, & F register between genuine short-enders (like Woollacotts) and those with minimal overhangs.
In 1957, these classes were overhauled which resulted in a lot of faffing about with registration numbers. The thinking seemed to be that if you had any overhang at all, albeit severely truncated, then you were bunged off into the E’s or C’s. I’m not 100% sure exactly what new criteria was imposed or how they measured it (maybe they didn’t and just asked the owners what they would like to be).
Anyway, Vesper was moved into the E-class and registered as E-57.
Her dims at that time were declared as:
26’2″x 24’x 7’6″x 4’6″, 420 sqft berm, 5hp 1957.
After the early 1960’s I lose track of her and she drops out of the registration books. By 1969 when the NZYF numbers were introduced she was not around in Auckland to collect her allocated number which would have been 457, nor was she registered anywhere else in NZ, so where she got to for the next 30-odd years I have no idea.
She is still around though. I saw her on the Okahu Bay hardstand in 2001.
According to YNZ she is currently registered with sail number 54 and a Harrison Butler design.
I will check the design aspect further and see what they said of her back in 1950.August 17, 2007 at 12:49 am #100765
If it is a Woollacott could it be Lady Pat??August 17, 2007 at 3:08 am #100766
Neil. Our responses must have crossed in the email. At least half of the “Gleam team” are up with the play. Well done!August 20, 2007 at 8:34 am #100767
According to the Sea Spray article of Dec 1950, Joe Cross and Roy Darrach are “jointly owners, designers and builders of Vesper”.
So I would expect the YNZ notation of Harrison Butler as the designer to be a guess that has come along in recent years.
She may of course have been off a cribbed HB plan and modified in the building and thus they could claim to be “designers”. Who knows?
In 1950 she was launched without a bowsprit or ports in the main cabin, but both of these are evident in the above photograph – a bit more to find here.
Incidentally, as of 1992/93 YNZ number 54 was still vacant, so her registration must be relatively recent.
Where did she get to between 1961 and the late 1990’s???August 21, 2007 at 11:45 pm #100768
Sicily, perhaps?June 18, 2013 at 7:02 am #100769
this is an old thread, but have just received this email, anyone know?
“I have been looking for any recent information on Vesper – sail number E57. My Dad, Jack Millett owned her from 60′ through to approx. Late 80’s. We are curious as to what became of her.
I have found online, a forum you participated in regarding Vesper in 2006. Can you point me in the right direction to find out where she is?
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