Monday, 26 May 2008

Sunny Crick

We spent Saturday at the Crick Boat Show. We left home early, and arrived at the show just a few minutes before the gates opened. We were glad we'd bought our tickets in advance, as our queue moved quickly once we were allowed in, while the enormous queue of people without tickets moved much more slowly.

It was much sunnier than we expected, although there was a strong wind which kept blowing signs off the roofs of boats.

We took a look at the new Polish-built OwnerShips boat, and decided that we prefer Debdale! The new boat has slightly more headroom, but we couldn't see the point of a couple of strange-looking skylights in the saloon and dinette. There's lots more storage in the galley, but the oven is now under the worktop rather than at eye level. In the bathroom, the bath has been replaced by a shower cublicle, but the frame is so low you'd have to duck to get inside.

Other boats we looked at included 4EverMoore, which we liked, and a Reading Marine boatwhich had some clever ideas but also some strange choices, such as having no rear hatch. Sheila from Sanity showed us around this year's Braidbar boat, which had a beautiful Gardner engine and a botman's cabin. We also like the Louis and Joshua boat, which we have a good chance of seeing out on the cut as it's to be based at Calcutt Marina. But our favourite was the Heartwood boat, Alma Jean. There were many things about the boat we wouldbn't have chosen (such as the reverse layout and the walkthrough bathroom), but the quality of the fitout was superb. The woodwork was particularly good, showing a high level of craftsmanship. One disappointment was that we didn't get to go on board the Fernwood boat, Whitefield, built to be a yacht for the canals. Their appointments were fully booked, so we only managed a look at the outside, including the unusual cratch cover.

Before we left the show, we took a walk along the canal and up to the top of Crack's Hill, from where the scale of the show was clear. There were boats moored as far as we could see, so some people must have had a long walk to the show.

UPDATE: I hear that the show has been closed early today, because of high winds.

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