Feature boats on show at Southampton next month

The 2010 PSP Southampton Boat Show at Mayflower Park from 10-19 September is a chance to step aboard some unusual, exciting and historic boats – if you time your visit right.

Throughout the show the new ‘green’ Contessa 32, Calypso, will be on display showing off her in-built hybridengine, hydrogen fuel cell, solar panels and sustainable hardwood fittings.

For nav-station enthusiasts, don’t miss the research vessel, Callista, with her banks of instruments, switch panels and controls.

Also, keep an eye out for Rossiter Yachts’ Old Pulteney currently under construction but due to make her debut at the show. If you’ve ever wondered what a four-man polar-exploration rowing boat-cum-sled might look like – this could be the boat for you.

Many of the other ‘feature boats’ will only be at the show for a limited period so time your visit if you can:

Military vessels

Dunkirk Little Ship (Tahilla) – Fri-Sat (10-11 Sept)
The Show will
welcome a further fascinating slice of Naval history by hosting Tahilla
, one of the original little ships that evacuated British soldiers from
the beaches and harbours of Dunkirk during Operation Dynamo. Tahilla’s
stern gear was damaged under intense artillery bombardment and once
repaired she returned to admiralty service as part of the harbour patrol
for the rest of the war.
In April this year Tahilla travelled to Ramsgate to join 50 other little ships in the commemorative return to Dunkirk.

High Speed Launch 102 – Fri-Wed (10-15 Sept)
High Speed Launch 102 is a 64 foot fast motor launch operated by the RAF
to recover pilots during the Battle of Britain. HSL-102 was also part
of operation Dynamo, recovering allied troops from Dunkirk. In 1993 she
was spotted as a houseboat in Dartmouth and purchased for restoration.

Motor Gunboat 81 – Thur-Sun (16-19 Sept)
Motor Gunboat 81 is a 71.5 foot fast motor launch which countered E boat raids on allied shipping and attacking German convoys in the English Channel and North Sea. After the Armistice, she was involved in smuggling and arrested in 1958, then used as a houseboat until a long process of restoration began in 1988.

Armed Steam Pinnace 199 Fri-Sun (17-19 Sept)
One of the few remaining Naval steamboats
in full working condition, Armed Steam Pinnace 199 is listed in the
National Historic Ships Register as a designated vessel. Featuring a
Hotchkiss three pound gun, she is still driven by steam machinery
typical of the early 1900s. This historic boat has been fully restored
to its 1911 glory. She is maintained and operated by volunteers from the
Society of Friends of the Royal Naval Museum who, dressed in the
uniform of the era, take great pride in keeping Naval traditions


Black Rose – Tues-Thur (14-16 Sept)
The Black Rose is a traditional classic sailing yacht owned by Mike Emmett, Britain’s last working oysterman. The unique vessel’s lines owe their origins to the fishing smacks characteristic of countries bordering the Southern North Sea and boasts a Victorian-style interior. Mike regards both the history and future of working sail as vitally important; he believes that working sail could enjoy a huge resurgence as pressure on fossil fuels grows.

Ocean racers

Challenge Wales – Sun-Mon (12-13 Sept)
Show visitors will have the opportunity to climb aboard a 72ft round-the-world racing yacht owned by Challenge Wales. She has previously competed in the world’s toughest yacht races, covering some 29,000 nautical miles while weathering 50 foot waves and winds of up to 60 knots. The yacht is now operated by Challenge Wales to provide training and development opportunities for young people, helping them learn life skills through team work and communication.