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White Maiden History

January 2017 White Maiden II, the future

 White Maiden II is now my future, having only been running her since 18th January 2017. I have had a great time with 'White Maiden' (see history below) but this new vessel is my last chance to go from a mid-range, inshore vessel to a top of the range, offshore vessel, should the need arise. I'm not going to chase the horizon, I like what I do but I love Bassing and Flatfish and St Catherine's area on the South tip of the Island. In my new vessel we can head down that way on forecasts with more wind in them.

 

  'White Maiden II' post launch day, when I first tested her back in 2009.      

October 2007 White Maiden, the recent past
 
Was this a dream boat or a reality? I was excited about White Maiden when I first set eyes on her and so I had to show the real boss, Mrs Jones, as soon as I could.

'Due South was my current charter boat at the time. She was a great boat but she was a bit tight for me standing at 6'3" full stretched and I wanted the stability and safety of a twin engine Catamaran.

Anyway I went for a quick test run, from Wicor Marine up to Portsmouth Harbour and back, with the family. There were no definite plans at that point but 14 knots on twin 25HP outboard engines was an incredible economy and nearly unbelievable at only 1.4 litres per mile.



February 2008

February is a bad time of year for charter skippers, as the weather can be poor and the fish are often well offshore which allows too much time to ponder on how to improve the business.

So in February 2008 I started getting more serious about White Maiden. I organised a Skippers test run. It was flat calm on a twenty mile round trip, out to Bembridge Ledge Buoy and back. But we witnessed a measured and incredible economy and speed from the two tiny 25Hp engines.

I got a follow up call from Ben at BWSeaCats, giving me first refusal over their test boat, 'White Maiden', labelled a 'Classic 995' Displacement Catamaran.

So aiming for a quick project turnaround, I paid the deposit and took the dive! As soon as I told friends that I was buying White Maiden, Due South was practically sold. This certainly helped the money situation but the whole thing was and still is a massive financial commitment.

March 2008
 

Next, was the preliminary MCA surveyors report and stability tests, which soon followed the fitting of the new and latest Yamaha 60 HP Long Shaft Eco Tech Outboard Engines (I now have the new 70's fitted since April 2015).

Then she came indoors for completion and modification to my turn key options that I had selected.

On the whole I am very pleased with the layout and only a few minor things would be different, if I were to start all over again. So no complaints.

 

April and May 2008

'White Maiden', in the BWSeaCat boatshed. Note that all boats look much bigger out of the water but 'White Maiden' looked huge! Next to 'White Maiden' is 'Aristocat'. Mine powered by petrol outboards and Denis' powered by 60Hp inboard diesel Nannis.

        

                         

Another BWSeaCat Classic 995 built at the same time was 'Aristocat'

Here is Denis Froud's 'Aristocat', with out-riggers fitted and the copper bottom applied. 'Arsitocat' is the same Classic 995 vessel as 'White Maiden' but she is fitted with twin inboard 60 Hp Diesel Nanni engines, has a range of about 700 miles and is being setup to catch the very first Rod and Line caught Bill fish from a UK Port.

I still think that what I have is a great and economical boat, ideal for my needs and I wrote this up three years on in 2011.

BWSeaCat now build a much bigger and heavier boat; the new SPEED 11. They are much more expensive too! I never believed that I could have own but now I do.

 

Handover Day - 12th June 2008
  
The 10th to the 12th of June 2008 was the Sea Work 2008 commercial boat show, at Southampton. Both 'White Maiden' and 'Aristocat' were starring for BWSeaCat- http://www.seawork.com  . Thursday 12th June was the 'White Maiden' handover, during the last hours of Sea Work '08. Ben and Iain are toying with the keys even though they know I have purchased their baby, along with 'Aristocat' this is just the beginning of a long BWSeaCat story. I am sure White Maiden means a lot to them, and they should be pleased to know she is still both lovely to fish from, look at and incredibly frugal on the fuel!

It is my honest opinion that the design is just about right for my crew (payload), sea area and part time business.

                                     

Thursday Evening 12th June - 1 hour after handover: We tested the windlass in 25' of water to have a fish just off Sowley piles, why not, it was a lovely evening! We immediately caught the first Black Bream and a few Mackerel, seemed like a lucky boat. The first trip was just as lucky or are the Trident SAC simply really good anglers, see week ending 16th June at this Fishy Grapevine page report of the first full trip.

Before White Maiden, September 2005

 I first tested Due South in September 2005, with Ted Entwhistle and the Trident SAC aboard, we spent the day round the Light. Ted insisted that I did not fish at all and just skippered the boat. That was hard as we had a couple of Congers and a nice Cod. She was an 8m South Boat, built and designed specifically for Ted and Mike Hannam. Ted had decided to retire from Skippering and Mike retired from the Police about the same time, so Due South was up for sale. Ted was a well known angler in the 80's, fishing for England, writing a Sea Angler Magazine column and was a well respected EFSA sports angler. However their loss was really my gain and Due South got me into looking after crews, allowing them to sample what I love, a good days fishing in the famous Needles area.

Due South is still local to me as I sold her to three fellow members of Ashlett Sea Angling Club and she is heavily used privately and running very well too! While South Boats, now owned by another company is still a major employer and business for the Island.