Read­ers of Clas­sic Boat magazine will hardly need intro­du­cing to Saunt­ress, the stun­ning 28ft gaff cut­ter built in 1913 by Wright & Har­ris in Cardiff. She made the CB ‘Top 200’ boats in a read­er poll some years ago, so of course was still lis­ted when they upped the num­ber to 250 a while later. Her keep­er Mar­tin O’Scannall was seduced in 1973 on see­ing her at Holy­head in North Wales; he and a friend soon set off south with her; the weath­er, their cap­ab­il­it­ies, and the con­di­tion of the ves­sel togeth­er determ­ined Dart­mouth as their des­tin­a­tion. It would be twelve years before she sailed again—but sailed she most cer­tainly has, the length of Europe’s west­ern sea­board, from Nor­way to Spain and from the Neth­er­lands to south-west Ire­land; and along the way col­lec­ted that most Worthy of addi­tions, the square­sail.

Martin’s charm­ing manu­script record­ing his 40-year affair with Saunt­ress was fol­lowed some weeks later, when he vis­ited us from his Galician home, by a huge archive of logs and mem­or­ab­il­ia, so huge we hardly knew where to start. But rest­ing on top was a CD bear­ing recent images by his pho­to­graph­er friend Oscar Com­pan­ioni. What bet­ter way to cel­eb­rate Saunt­ress in pic­tures, than in her full present-day glory? Martin’s enga­ging story is accom­pan­ied with Oscar’s superb visu­al account of a single balmy even­ing in late sum­mer, dur­ing her annu­al match-race with a local rival in Galicia.

Fol­low­ing a minor tech­nic­al hitch or two, For the Love of Saunt­ress will appear on 7 Novem­ber. We are pretty sure.