Surprisingly for this time of year the volume of sales enquiries has actually increased considerably which is great news for those of you who are parting with your current boat for whatever reason. It could be the sunshine which has persisted right into December, it could be our marketing efforts, it could be that people expect to be able to find a bargain in the winter or it may simply be a combination of circumstances. Whatever the reason it is great to be busy and to be dealing with both happy buyers and sellers.

Tis the season for winter work

In storage this year we have almost 50 boats, which is keeping Stuart and the Beale Park team on their toes.

When business becomes pleasure.

When business becomes pleasure.

I had a delightful delivery trip from the slipway at Cookham to a customer a couple of miles up river. On another bright cold morning I drove an electric punt “Thames Bank” to the slipway in Marlow for Stuart to load onto one of our trailers.

The HSC partnership in action.

The HSC partnership in action.

While I am busy meeting clients and planning the Boat Show, Stuart, Ellie and our new recruit Toby have been pressure washing, drawing up inventories, and inspecting each boat as it comes in for storage. This generally results in a conversation with the owner so that (s)he is aware of any winter work which could be carried out in the down season. Keeping your boat in tip-top condition is the key to maintaining its value.

Our customers generally appreciate our advice and some simply tell us to do whatever we think is required and send them the bill. This shows immense trust in our expertise. Most however like to be part of the conversation and that is fine too.

Our policy is to produce an estimate, which Gail sends out to you; once we receive a 50% deposit the job goes into the schedule. If you are still waiting for an estimate, please be patient as Stuart is gradually getting around all the boats now that they are all offloaded and in their final storage location.

Are you looking for mooring?

If you live anywhere in the mid-Thames area and would love to own a boat but simply can’t find a mooring, one of our customers has a spare 10 metre pontoon mooring in Pangbourne. If this is of interest to you, please email Mark at mc@solafields.co.uk.

2018 Christmas gift book recommendations

The Boat Cookbook

Unless you have a superyacht most of us who prepare food on boats have to use a tiny galley, however this can be part of the fun. With Christmas looming why not buy your favourite galley slave The Boat Cookbook by Fiona Sims, which is full of delicious and easy recipes, designed to be made with minimum fuss for maximum flavour.

The Boat Drinks Book

No meal on board is complete without an accompanying tipple and you will find ideas aplenty in The Boat Drinks Book to enable you to whip up an impressive cocktail.

If you wish to read something ‘more meaty’ (sorry for the pun) our old friend Kevin Desmond, erstwhile curator of the Maritime Museum in Bordeaux and a lifelong electric boat enthusiast, has written: Electric Boats and Ships – A history. Kevin traces the history of electric boating from 1835 to the present day. I would say that while some of the text reads like a list of facts, there is also plenty to enjoy. It was an exciting time indeed for all things electric.

How extraordinary that it took another century for the possibilities of electric boating to attract a new audience, which was when I myself got involved via ‘the Steam and Electric launch company’ and ‘the Electric speed record’, which was televised for ‘Tomorrows World’.

Electric Boats and Ships

A snippet from the book: “Did you know that on September 29th, 1882 a boat named “Electricity” made a pioneering trip on the River Thames to London Bridge from Millwall jetty and back at a speed of 7 miles and hour. One of the passengers on board was professor Sylvanus P. Thompson a respected electrical engineer, who speculated that “before the Electric age is over, our knives will be polished, our coffee roasted, our shoes shined, our vehicles driven … by the self-same agency that will bring light into our dwellings.”

If you want to buy your own copy of the book, it can be purchased online at the Eurospan bookstore. For a 20% discount and worldwide free shipping use the discount code BOAT20 at checkout.

Pure Boating Gift Vouchers

PureBoating Voucher

While on the subject of Christmas gifts, if you are looking for something a bit different, Pure Boating now offers pre-paid electric boat hire vouchers. So you could gift a loved one or a friend an hour (or two) of boat rental on the river Thames, to be used any time (subject to availability) between March 30th 2018 and September 30th 2018.

To order a gift voucher for boat hire simply call our office at: 01491 578 870.

London Boat Show 2018

Throughout my whole career in boat sales I have been a real fan of electric propulsion for the inland waterways. It is not too late for me to capitalise on this passion, and Stuart and I will be waving the flag on our eBoatique stand (number LE260).

London Boat Show

Back for its 64th year, the London Boat Show returns in January 2018 celebrating everything you can do and enjoy on the water. Bringing a world of inspiration, stunning yachts and on-water experiences visitors will be treated to five days of the very latest in the boating world. Incorporating the all-new Boating & Watersports Holiday Show, visitors will also be able to get into the holiday spirit and plan their next water-based getaway.

Over 300 exhibitors will be showcasing the best the marine world has to offer with debuts to the World and European stage. The event will also offer exciting attractions including: Lock & Waterside Pub, Beach Club & Activity Pool, the stunning Classic Boat Collection, Practical Boat Owner Theatre, the Legends Theatre, the iconic Black & White Bar and The Yachtsman’s Champagne Bar. Whether you love boating, want to experience something new or just want an enjoyable day out, the world-famous London Boat Show has something for everyone.

Loddon beer

For the first time we will be there with our very own stand at Excel (remember East-London is trendy these days) from January 10th – 14th 2018.

We can make it worth your while, as we are partnering with Loddon Brewery to promote their Ferryman’s Gold flagship beer!

“Windermere 27” at the Traditional Boat festival

“Windermere 27” at the Traditional Boat festival

You will find our eBoatique stand at the far end of the show adjacent to the Champagne bar and to Bespoke London. See you on stand number LE260 where you will be able to admire the Windermere 27 built by PBW, which was on the water at the Traditional Boat Festival in 2017.

London Boat Show is offering the HSC newsletter readers a discount on their show tickets. Via our link you will be able to order 2 tickets for the price of 1!

No better way to enjoy the Thames in London

While you are in London you could consider joining the prestigious Chelsea Yacht Club. This is not some fancy Thames-side building but a pair of the most gorgeous classic motor yachts. One is “Bluebird of Chelsea” a Dunkirk Little Ship built in 1931 by Thornycroft for Sir Malcolm Campbell to commemorate his knighthood. She is 52ft long and licensed to carry up to 12 guests.

Bluebird sits alongside “Sigrid of Chelsea” which was built by Camper & Nicholson in 1925. Sigrid is slightly larger and equally beautiful both on deck and below.

“Bluebird of Chelsea” and "Sigrid of Chelsea"

“Bleubird of Chelsea” and “Sigrid of Chelsea”

I was fortunate enough to be invited to the most splendid evening party on Cadogan pier. The Albert Bridge shone brightly as we sipped vintage Champagne and lounged on the deck under a starry London sky. This was our capital city at its very best.

When you become a member of the Chelsea Yacht Club you can charter either motor yacht with a skipper and crew. They will provide the catering or you can bring your own. Both boats come up to Henley for the Regatta and you can also book a cabin on board for the weekend. If you are interested in finding out more, I suggest you contact Graham at info@cyc.london.

If you are selected for membership, please invite me as your guest as I love cruising the Thames in central London, and especially in great company on a historic wooden vessel.

Our warmest wishes for the coldest season

As we are gearing up for winter and the festive season, Stuart and I are reflecting on another amazing year of growth for our business. We focused on streamlining our internal processes and procedures this year, as well as broadening our network of contacts even further, so as to reach a maximum number of potential new boat owners.

Next year with the launch of eBoatique, we will be expanding our offering with smart new electric launches imported from France, Holland, Germany and Canada.

Happy Holidays

All of this would not have been possible if it weren’t for the support of our most loyal clients. We appreciate each and every one of you. Thank you.


Stuart and I, and the whole HSC team wish you
a wonderful Christmas
and
a brilliant 2018!