|In Dry Dock Featuring Current Proud Owner Roger|
The boat, where did it come from and how did it get here? While some history is unknown, some history is, so let's start with that. It was designed and commisioned by marine engineer, diamond miner, Bentley enthusiast and general eccentric John 'Jumbo' Goddard and built by Halvorsen Gowland in Sydney, Australia. The hull is made from 42 feet of huon pine, no mean feat considering this is a rare and protected species only found in western Tasmania. Famed for it's natural resistance to rot and shrinkage most of this wonder wood was sucked up for boat building in the 1820's and with a growth rate that's measured in thousands of years there isn't going to be any more any time soon.
The design is the result of Jumbo Goddard's want for a Naval steam pinnace, and based on 1908 Simpson Strickland design.
|1908 Simpson Stickland Gentleman's Day Cruiser|
It is currently unknown to me whether the boat ever made it into Australian waters but in 1978 it was transported to Britain to settle a debt with British business man Tom Wheatcroft. Subsequent owner Alan Ritchie added the raised center wheelhouse but sadly passed away following a ballooning-parachute accident before completing his proposed installation of twin high pressure boilers and steam engine. And so the boat originally named Gollywog by Jumbo was briefly owned by steam enthusiast Derrick Mills before being purchased by current owner Roger Lees (my step father) in 2002.