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Phyllis Today

This is the story behind the 1907 Humber sloop that was to help fight two wars and join the search for the Loch Ness monster.

Phyllis 1907. Loa 68ft, Beam16ft.4, Draft 7ft.4, Official Number 124785. Yard Number 60. Sail Number 26148.

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Updated: April 2016

Sailing at South Ferriby

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125 years of Sailing

Phyllis had her first request for an appearance on the Humber at the Humber Yawl Club celebration for their 125th year.
The then Captain of the club Mrs Phylomena Smith came to us and asked if she could use Phyllis to take all the past captains of the club out on the river to take a sail past salute from the club yachts to start the weekend off. Being asked to bring Phyllis to an event like this is pleasing and we were honoured to be asked, needless to say we agreed to take part with Phyllis.
 Phyllis would need to be tidied out inside and a lick of fresh paint was applied to her hull, being still in a state of restoration she isn't exactly always ready to cast off and go places.
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The Environment Agency gave Phyllis a reserved mooring at South Ferriby while we got her ready to carry the dignitaries out onto the Humber for the celebration sail past.

Phyllis leaves the lock at South Ferriby with all flags flying, the important ones are on the starboard spreader topped by the standard of the Lord Mayor of Hull and Admiral of the Humber, HYC Captains and ABP pennants below. Of course her own burgee tops the lot.

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Site created May 2009

By Kath Jones & Alan Gardiner.

If anyone has any memories of working for James Barraclough or have a story about working on Phyllis or any of the Barraclough barges we would like to hear from you.
If you have any comments or questions on the content of the site or would like to add something to it regarding any of the sloops we would also like to hear from you.


Some of the 130 yachts that took part in the salute to past captains of the Humber Yawl Club from both sides of the Humber to celebrate the clubs 125 year anniversary on a misty Saturday morning on 28th June 2008.

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Interesting Links

Humber Keel & Sloop Preservation Society.

National Historic Ships Reg.

Thames Barges

Goole Waterways Museum.
Dutch Barge Association.
In The Boat Shed.
Humber Packet Boats.
Leicester Trader.
Humber Yawl Club.
Brilliant Star

 Phyllis holds station off Brough for the armada of club yachts to sail past and salute the past club captains, guests also on board were The Lord Mayor of Hull and Admiral of the Humber Elaine Garland and The Humber Harbor Master Captain Phil Cowing.

Rodney Clapson

Richlow Books

Sailing Barge Research

West Country Keels

Waterways of the Humber
By Christine Richardson.

Barges and Docks

Sheffield Ships.

 Sloop "Amy Howson"

 Sloop "Spider T.

 Keel "Comrade".

 Keel "Daybreak".

 Keel "Southcliffe".

 Keel "Hope".

 Keel "Eden".


The Barton Regatta

Leeboards Explained

Telling The Differance


Contact Us Here

Parade of Historic sail

September 16th 2009 saw a unique site on the Humber, four Humber sailing barges accompanied by a Dutch pilot botter were under sail together. The Humber Keel and Sloop Preservation Society had arranged to sail all the traditional sailing barges together on the Saturday in a parade of traditional sail before the start of the Round The World Clipper Race. And of course "Phyllis" was there.

Left. "Phyllis", showing all she's got!
 With all five sails hoisted she makes her way up to the bridge from Alex Dock.
 This was the first time "Phyllis" had everything up and there was allot of trepidation from me whether or not it would end up in a big tangle. But with a keen crew and a purposeful manner we had it all flying nicely by the time we got to the Humber bridge. This was also the first time in 100 years that a cutter rigged Humber sloop had been seen in full sail.

Right. A picture by Lesley Everatt shows the keel "Southcliffe" owned and skippered by Chris Sherburn and HKSPS sloop "Amy Howson" under the Humber bridge off Hessle. Mark Peacock skippered Amy for the HKSPS in my place with her usual crew to enable all the ships to take part as I was on "Phyllis". Thanks Mark.

Left. A shot you wont see very often, "Amy Howson" and "Phyllis" sailing at the same time. As Sailing Master on Amy Its me who sails her so usually Amy stays tied up while we sail Phyllis and visa versa, so to see them both out together is pretty unique. The shot clearly shows the difference in rigging between the Humber and Sheffield sloops when seen together.
Southcliffe, owned and skippered by Chris Sherburn is a beautifully turned out (as usual) Sheffield keel following in the footsteps of the HKSPS keel "Comrade" with Sailing Master Steve Shone in charge as they both get under sail just west of the Humber Bridge off Hessle.
 "Comrade" and "Southcliffe" were both built in the same year 1923, "Comrade" at New Holland and "Southcliffe" at Dunstons of Thorne.
 Southcliffe carries a stump mast and flies just a main sail, this was the usual rig for the keels of Goole and Thorne.
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Texelstroom, pictured left joined the Humber ships from Texel, an island on the north coast of Holland. Captain Peter Lock had sailed her over to the Humber  for the start of the Clipper Race and also made a voyage up the coast to Whitby during the week. "Texelstroom" is a pilot botter originally working as a sail only pilot boat in 1906 around the coast of Texel.


Left, is a picture from D.H Wright.
Phyllis is brought hard over into the wind as we drop the jib off Barrow Haven, Kath struggled with her 9 stone something to hold the tiller down against the force of the rudder.
 D.H Wright's flickr page has more images of local interest.
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