"Dorana" Leigh Cockle Bawley Lying Medway
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"What attracted you to the boat?"
Wanted a traditional sailing vessel. Have always considered the Bawley to be a most attractive type. The Bawley is somewhat related to the Thames barge in rig and hull, and I have also great interest in Thames barges.
Very few Bawleys remain. Even fewer cockle bawleys, perhaps only four left under sail. (Others are ALICE & FLORRIE, JAQUELINE, and MARY AMELIA).
"What have you used the boat for?"
Cruising the Thames Estuary area. Taking part or going to watch traditional sailing vessel matches. Generally the traditional boat scene.
Most people on board at any one time under my ownership was four.
"How does she sail?"
Well in light airs. Otherwise prefers a good quartering breeze. Not very fast. Not very close winded. Engine frequently used to make a fast passage to a traditional boat meet. Otherwise great for pottering about in the area. Nice to anchor in a creek for lunch or for the night. Good to be in a character boat.
She really comes to life with the topsail set. The big jib gives a lot of pull.
"How does she manoeuvre under sail?"
Needs to be sailed round when tacking, with minimum helm. Backing headsails when tacking may help get round more quickly.
False keel of Jarrah helps to minimise leeway. (Old sailing cockle boats had a centre plate. I believe they all had their centre plates removed on conversion to yachts, and at least one (ALICE & FLORRIE) also has a false keel.
When manoeuvring under engine, need to be a ware of windage from mast and topmast, and make allowance for it. Actually manoeuvres very well both ahead and astern under power, and I have got her in and out of some very tight places.Cruising speed under sail, about 4 to 5 knots. Under power she is fast, perhaps 7.5 to 8 knots.
"Entertaining on board"
Have only tried it with four of us, and was very good. Bunk boards hinge up to make seat backs, table has fiddles. Galley is well equipped to cope with requirements.
Alternatively it is nice to sit on the engine box (which has a quilted cover) and entertain al fresco.
"What is she like for kids?"
The traditional bawley rig, in my opinion, is not suitable for children, nor inexperienced adults, nor the partially sighted. There is no boom, and the main sheet horse is astern of the helmsman. An uncontrolled gybe with a slack main sheet could put the helmsman over the side! (But the bawley men lived with it for nearly a hundred years!)
To get round this, I have obtained a boom, and if sailing with kids etc. I always fit the boom, and then she is just like any other gaff rigged vessel with loose footed mainsail.
"Where has she been?"
After spending years in the Thames Estuary, including being worked commercially, she became a yacht and eventually ended up in the West Country, sailing on the River Tamar, Calstock, Plymouth, Morewellham etc.
From there she moved to the Solent, as was registered with the Old Gaffers Association. I found her at Keyhaven, and sailed her back to the Thames Estuary area.
"Why are you selling her?"
1. She is a heavy boat to handle, and for health reasons she has to go.
2. I have 12 boats, and at my age the need to down size has arrived.
3. I work in the offshore oil industry, leave home at short notice, and go away for varied time periods. My sailing is therefore at short notice, and I find it hard to get a crew at such short notice. My "new" yacht (older than DORANA) is much smaller and gear is much lighter, and I intend to sail her solo. Incidentally, I have sailed DORANA single handed on the Medway. Enjoyable but hard work.
She had a brief mention in Classic Boat magazine in an article by Robert Simper on the East Coast Race. Nothing specific. Two almost identical vessels took part in the evacuation at Dunkirk. One was mined with loss of all hands. I know nothing of the early days of DORANA (see separate history sheets).
Registered with the Old Gaffers Association, number 734.
There is a steering wheel, with chain gypsy, which I have removed. The chains are still there, and a new owner could re-instate the wheel. I took it off as I wanted her to be traditional.
Here is a chance to step back into history. 'Dorana' retains all of her old world charm but has been substantially rebuilt and made comfortable. The addition of the extra keel and the updated engine dramatically improve her passage making ability for either when it 'blows' or when it dies.
Her asking price is substantially less than the money that has been spent getting her up to her current standard.
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