Model boat perfectly recreates coble once sailed by its maker

AS A teenager, boatbuilder Joe Gelsthorpe sailed in a coble. Now five decades on, he has handed a model of the fishing boat he once used off Hornsea to the town’s museum.

Mr Gelsthorpe spent three months building the quarter-scale model of the boat, called the Psamathe, which was built in 1927 and in use up to the 1960s.

Believed to be the last one built before engines replaced sail, the original was owned by the two Morrow brothers, natives of Hornsea. The family was well known as owners of a chemist’s shop in the town.

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Complete with mast and sail, the model, now on display at Hornsea Museum, is around 6ft long, and exquisitely detailed with scale-sized crab pots and artificially-rusted metal fittings.

Mr Gelsthorpe was commissioned to build the model by William Sumner, of Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, nephew of the Morrow bothers, who sailed with him on Psamathe when they were teenagers. The model displays the distinctive features of a coble – flat-bottomed, with upswept bows for launching on and off the beach.

Mr Gelsthorpe, who has built around 30 wooden cobles and 2,000 fibreglass Pebbles, which followed the traditional lines of a coble, said it would have been quicker making a full-size boat, because of the fiddly nature of making a small model.