MIST – HISTORY & DESCRIPTION:
The Albert Strange yacht MIST designed in 1906 was built in 1907 by P McKeown of Belfast for cruising the western islands of Scotland. When she came to the Albert Strange Association’s attention one hundred years later, her recent history included sinking at her mooring some years before, spending two months seventy feet down on the bottom of the Gareloch. The cause was a jammed swivel on the chain of her swinging mooring; after many months unattended the chain had twisted and shortened sufficiently to pull her bow under and flood her. She was raised with the help of the local naval base and the involvement of Jim Hill and on being pumped out she floated perfectly. She was placed upon a lighter, where she sat unattended for some ten years. Her owner appreciated the significance of the boat but was unable to turn his good intentions into action to save her. Finally, believing her good for nothing, he abandoned her on the shore and hoped a scrap dealer would dispose of her.
Early in 2006 the Association was contacted by a gentleman walking his dog who recognised her as possibly worth saving, and put us in touch with local boatbuilder Jim Hill, who by then had persuaded the operator of a floating crane to deposit her inside an equally abandoned ship’s lifeboat for some measure of protection from the waves. The problems now were simple: How to get her across the beach to the roadside where she could be craned away, and who to restore her?
ASA member John Hobson of Scarborough travelled north to assess the boat’s condition; on his own admission he knew wood better than he did boats, but she looked ‘do-able’ so he and Dick Wynne agreed to underwrite the expense of recovery pending a new owner being found. Hard cash was required to build a cradle to facilitate her eventual transport away from the site, and the problem of how to get her off the beach was finally solved when Jim found a farmer with a four-wheel-drive tractor able to drag lifeboat, Mist and all, for a consideration, to within reach of a crane at the roadside.
Finally in late October MIST was recovered, placed on a lorry and taken temporarily to the haulage company’s yard. Meanwhile, a suitor emerged in the form of experienced boatbuilder John Krejsa of Woodbridge in Suffolk, who had spotted MIST’s plight in Classic Boat magazine and was looking for a project for his anticipated retirement. He had her transported to Woodbridge and began a ten-year, largely single-handed restoration, assisted and advised by Mike Burn, no stranger himself to the practice, having restored SHEILA himself some years ago.
John had copies of MIST’s original drawings and wanted to restore her as near to original as possible including, of course, her designed cabin top, so much more attractive than the much later doghouse inflicted upon her. Some of the ASA’s East Coast members visited her in her new home and found that she appeared perfectly fair and true despite her tribulations of recent years. Her hull is the most subtle and attractive shape. One detail not shown on the lines plan is the way her iron keel casting fairs perfectly with the curve of her hull and splays noticeably at the foot, getting the maximum righting moment for the weight of metal and depth of keel.
The restored MIST‘s first proper outing was in September 2018 when she was one of seven Albert Strange boats at the largest ever Meet, on the River Deben. Sadly, John Krejsa was not well enough to sail her himself, though he was able to watch her from the shore; sadder still, he passed away a few weeks later.
MIST was built for Brian Waite to a canoe yawl design by the marine artist and yacht designer Albert Strange (1855-1917) who was headmaster of the Scarborough School of Art for thirty-five years and who with George Holmes was the mainstay of the Humber Yawl Club. Albert designed many yachts for the club based on the development of sailing canoes. As an artist, his yacht designs are beautiful with graceful flowing lines. MIST’s second registered owner was E A Praeger of Co. Down, who bought the boat before the First World War, keeping her until the late 1920s, when after a change of ownership she came off the registry. In the early 1950s, George Brien of Belfast bought MIST keeping her on Strangford Lough. He fitted a Stuart Turner engine in 1952. In the late 1950s, K Smyth of Bangor bought MIST selling her in 1964 to Alan McDowell of Workington who stationed MIST at Whitehaven. In 1969 Mrs J S McFarlane of Bridge of Weir became the next owner. As a member of the Royal Cruising Club, she kept MIST at Gourock. In the late 1970s, George Mackie of Glasgow acquired MIST keeping her at Clynder and sailing under number 370C within the Cruising Club.
Deck/Hull Planking-Larch ( Sourced via Forestry Commission, Wye Valley, Wales)
Frames -Iroko alternating with White Oak (sourced from the USA In a flexible state sealed to avoid the need for steaming, a method first used in the USA Construction Industry)
Cabin coamings, cockpit lining, brightwork – Kaya
Masts & Spars- Sitka Spruce
Sails – Clipper Canvas
All supplied by North Sea Sails, The Sail Loft, Woodrolfe Rd, Tollesbury. Tel (01621)869367
Professionally cleaned-used once.
Engine – Electric Torqueedo: Cruise 4.0 FP 1251-00 Pod Drive
Supplied By Seamark Nunn, 400 High Rd, Trimley St Martin, Suffolk
Installation: Robertsons Boatyard, Lime Kiln Quay Road, Woodbridge, Suffolk
Batteries – 48 Volt system
Gas – Locker provided, gas supply not installed
Cooker-Ring/Grill- Neptune 4500 Bainbridge
New settee berth cushions
Summer Cover – The Sail Medic, Ransoms Park, Ipswich
Exquisite, beautiful vintage yachts like MIST rarely come on to the market, especially one that has been totally and faithfully rebuilt to the original design. A yacht to cherish for a lifetime, rewarding to sail, beautiful to the eye from every angle and top quality workmanship over a 10 year period. Offered at a fraction of re-build cost. Launched Summer 2019 after re-paint and varnish for the Albert Strange East Coast Meet.
Immediate viewing recommended.
LYING: Ashore – East Coast
VIEWING: Through CLASSIC YACHT BROKERAGE – 01905-356482