Luke Powell’s Working Sail is back!

The success of Christian Topf’s epic production From the Loft Floor to the Sea shows that interest in traditional wooden boatbuilding, and the pilot cutter as an exemplar of it, is unabated. We’ve now reissued Luke’s 2012 account of his life in wooden boats – covering the entire bevy of his earlier pilot cutters.

You can learn more and secure a copy here.

Truly, a place apart

It’s not just about the boats, but their presence is strong in the North Yorkshire fishing village of Staithes. We had a lovely weekend in November accompanying author Gloria Wilson – who was brought up here – to local signing sessions. Local historian James Stoker gave us a grand walking tour of this hardy, self-reliant, eccentric, and now much changed settlement, for which the term ‘higgledy-piggledy’ might have been invented.

Let Gloria guide you too on a stroll around the village she loves; start here.

How it all began

George Holmes was an influential figure in the design and sailing of small boats from the late nineteenth century until well into the twentieth. His prolific writings, drawings, etchings, and designs had never been collected when, in 2009, my friend Tony Watts of the Humber Yawl Club agreed to take on this task, and incorporate a biography of Holmes. The success of Holmes of the Humber, our first book, got Lodestar Books off the ground.

Holmes is finally out of print, but you can now enjoy a copy in PDF form – click here.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Albert Strange

Albert Strange

Lodestar regulars will know that we have a soft spot for the Victorian/Edwardian ‘Renaissance Man’ Albert Strange — Yacht Designer, Sailor, Writer, Raconteur and not least Marine Artist. The Albert Strange Association, founded in 1978, exists to preserve his...

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A humble background

A humble background

Like many boys reared on British rivers by the sea, David grew up with a natural love for boats and sailing. In later years he would translate this into a business which would set trends in yacht design and construction, but even as a young lad he was showing flair....

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Too fast for accurate navigation

Too fast for accurate navigation

The year was 1955 and H W Tilman was undertaking his first 'sail to climb' expedition, aiming to cross the Patagonian ice-cap in both directions—starting from the 'other side'. This would necessitate a transit of the Magellan Strait; as Sir Robin Knox-Johnston puts it...

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Handy with a toolbox

Handy with a toolbox

Martin O'Scannall has enjoyed a love affair of more than forty years with his 1913 gaff cutter Sauntress, beginning with her rebuild and culminating in the glories pictured here. Below is his account of her sojourn in a boatyard at Brentford on the Thames in west...

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A humble background

A humble background

Like many boys reared on British rivers by the sea, David grew up with a natural love for boats and sailing. In later years he would translate this into a business which would set trends in yacht design and construction, but even as a young lad he was showing flair....

read more

More stories >>