The great day dawned at last when, a few days after my return from a month in France, we decided - almost on a whim - to get down to the river about 6 km away and launch her in the local marina. As the river is useless to sail on we just wanted to try out the oars and the outboard and at least to say we had launched the boat at long last (four and a half years of building!!). The champagne had been cooling in readiness for a month or so. Although we had at first thought of inviting all and sundry along we felt a 'private' affair was more appropriate. We all wanted to be IN the boat anyway and selfishly not talking to friends and neighbours on the bank instead.
After going out of the marina and onto the Severn an incredible thing happened. A canal narrow boat passed us and somebody shouted out "is that a John Welsford design? We're on holiday from New Zealand". What a one in a million chance! They took a photograph which us has just come back to us from John via Mike Austin of British Backyard Boatbuilding (http://www.backyardboatbuilding.org.uk/) What a small world. We only know of one other 'Pathfinder' being built in the UK at the moment.