Velocity is the Club’s first boat; she was built in 2011 by the Brightlingsea based Pioneer Sailing Trust’s master shipwright Shaun White with the Trust’s young apprentices. She is 24′ long, and built using cold-molded construction techniques with three layers of mahogany. The oars, which are made of spruce with ash backs, were supplied by Suttons. Velocity is the first of this class of gig, of which there are now 6 in operation with other organisations, and several more are in build.
Several of the Harker’s Yard Gigs are named after old working boats from the port in which the gigs are based, and Velocity is named after a large sailing smack built in Brightlingsea in 1864.
Our second four-oared gig was launched on 7th July 2012; called Vanduara, she is named after another ‘skillinger’ smack built in Brightlingsea by Aldous in 1880. Her remains lie on Peewit Island in the Pyefleet, which we often row past. She is the second gig built by the Pioneer Trust from the same mold as Velocity, and also has Sutton’s beautiful oars.