Saturday, September 10, 2011

Nicholson 32

A friend of mine owned a Nicholson 32 and kept her in a mud berth at Combwich, which is not far from Bridgwater, in Somerset. She was an old boat that had belonged to the RAF Sailing Association. He renovated the yacht, including repairing a hole in her hull. She had taken a bit of a bashing during her lifetime, but by the time he finished restoring her she was fit to go anywhere.

I recollect sailing with my friend in the Bristol Channel when we ran into a Force 7 off Ilfracombe. While shortening sail, the tail of the main halyard was lost, which meant we could not efficiently raise that sail. Despite the conditions, we were able to put into Ilfracombe, where the yacht dried out beside a quay.

She was one of those yachts that give great assurance to those who sail on them. She was a bit like a Contessa 32, but more powerful. I felt she would cope with the toughest of conditions, and yet have a good turn of speed in light winds. Everything about her was robust.

Well, on a recent visit to Burnham Yacht Harbour I came across a Nicholson 32. She was laid up on the hard. I believe she may be the yacht ‘Skirmish’. If that’s the case, she’s for sale through Clarke and Carter at £21,750. I think she may have had a recent makeover. Compare my photos with those of ‘Skirmish’ in the Clarke and Carter PDF catalogue. (See links below)

I wouldn’t attempt to outline a history of Nicholson 32s, of which many versions have been produced, but if you are interested, you can visit the ‘History of the Nicholson 32’ webpage via the link below.


Nicholson 32 Association

History of the Nicholson 32

Nicholson 32 for Sale £21,750

Clarke and Carter PDF Catalogue for ‘Skirmish’

Another Nicholson 32 for Sale at £25,000

Yet another Nicholson 32 for Sale at £11,000

R.A.F. Sailing Association

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