Restore work to Sir Alec Rose’s iconic yacht Lively Lady begins

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Work will begin in earnest to restore Sir Alec Rose’s iconic yacht Lively Lady to her former glory in time to mark the 50th anniversary of the historic solo circumnavigation. 

The historic sailing boat, built in 1948, was moved today from the Camber Docks in Portsmouth to the Hayling Yacht Company on Hayling Island, which is overseeing the work to repair, refurbish and repaint the vessel.

The boat was moved from Portsmouth to Hayling Island by tug expert Dave Baker, under the watchful eye of Mark Smith, incoming Chairman of the charity Around and Around.

Mark Smith said: “Lively Lady is a true icon of the sailing world, and of our city, that inspired a generation of young people to take up sailing. I am delighted that we have finally been able to move her to Hayling Island where work can get underway to refurbish her in time for next year’s celebrations.”

The restoration project is being supported by ocean racing legend Alan Priddy and founder of Around and Around. He sailed the yacht around the world in 2006-08 with a group of young people and adult volunteers from Hampshire. Following the voyage he agreed to become the custodian of the vessel in a deal with Portsmouth City Council and the children’s charity Around and Around.

As part of the agreement, the Charity promised to refurbish the 70 year old vessel, replacing the deck and undertaking some minor modernisation work to the galley to ensure she meets modern health and safety rules.

Alan Priddy said: “This an important milestone for everyone who loves Lively Lady, Sir Alec and his epic adventure. Sir Alec was my inspiration to learn to sail, a real Portsmouth hero who defied considerable odds and obstacles to become just the second person to sail single-handedly around the world. A feat even today, but he did this without any of the modern tools we see now as essential.”

Lively Lady will be lifted out of the water before being placed under cover to allow an experienced shipwright to oversee the work that will see the deck replaced, engine refurbished and the wheelhouse being rebuilt, before she is repainted in the distinctive sky blue that makes her so instantly recognisable.         

The work is expected to take around seven months, when she will be re-floated in time for the event to mark the 50th anniversary of the round the world voyage.