White Heather, built by Richard Pearce at East Looe, Cornwall, in 1926, was first owned by the four Thomas brothers at Mevagissey, but later fished out of Falmouth for various owners before being laid up on moorings in the Fal.
Norman Laity, of St Ives, converted her back to sail in 1988, then sold her on to Fred Hindley, who ran sailing trips out of Fowey.
In 1992, she was bought and underwent an extensive restoration by the late Mike Mackay-Lewis, with the help of Paul Greenwood, author of “Once aboard a Cornish Lugger”, and current chairman of the Cornish Lugger Association. She was stripped down to her bare hull, many planks and the transom was renewed, using over 1,200 galvanised fastenings. In 2003, she sailed from Cornwall to Morocco and Brazil, returning to the UK via the Caribbean.
White Heather is sound and seaworthy, major work was carried out, again, in 2005, when the keel bolts and garboards were replaced and the 6 cylinder 82 hp Leyland-Thornycroft engine and gearbox was remanufactured by Injection Marine of Bristol.
Following a refit in Bristol in 2011, she appeared as a guest at the Gloucester Tall Ships Festival. She was out of the water for a further refit in 2014. On both occasions two planks were replaced. In 2015 the decks were sheathed with woven roving fibreglass and epoxy resin.
Out of the hundreds of Cornish luggers that were built, White Heather is one of only thirty in sea-going order surviving today. Source: www.whiteheather.org.uk, August 2015
Built by Richard Pearce at East Looe, Cornwall and first owned by four brothers at Mevagissey
Fished out of Falmouth for various owners before being laid up at moorings in the Fal
Converted back to sail by Norman Laity of St Ives
Sold to Fred Hindley for sailing trips out of Fowey
Bought by Mike Mackay-Lewis and extensive restoration carried out advised by Paul Greenwood
Sailed from Cornwall to Morocco and Brazil, returning to UK via Caribbean
Keel bolts and garboards replaced and engine and gearbox remanufactured
Refit undertaken in Bristol followed by guest appearance at Gloucester Tall Ships Festival
Removed from the water for a further refit
Decks sheathed with woven roving fibreglass and epoxy resin
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