32ft ‘built at Thornycroft's in 1929. She was owned by a former Thornycroft apprentice, Fred Bourne together with his wife Sheila, who was the secretary of The Thames Vintage Boat Club.
Also an early member of the ADLS, Chris & Shelley, were very keen for to return back to the fleet for the forthcoming Dunkirk Return. This meant a full rebuild and re engineering within a year. This was not aided by the worst flooding in 100 years.
ELSA IN THE MAKING: A RACE TO DUNKIRK 2015
2014 I 2015
2014 was a difficult year severely effect by the worst flooding in the area for 100 years. However we were adamant Elsa II and the Brightman's was going to make the 2015 crossing only one year away, we were not going to let them down.
Elsa II required a lot of work, there was not a lot left of this once carefully cared for little ship and what was left was in a dire condition.
Works started immediately , she was re-strengthen, re-planked, re- engineered, re-painted, re-varnished , new cabin inside and out and eventually in early 2015 a few months prior to Dunkirk re-launch for her working trials.
The day she slipped back into the water was a glorious sunny winters day with a low lying sun which reflected beautifully on her new varnish and shone brightly on her gold leaf name.
A beautiful small yet capable sea-going, motor-cruiser built on the Thames in 1929 and rebuilt on the Thames 85 years later. Elsa is a striking vessel beautifully proportioned and when you see her on the water you can't her but look at her say 'thats a pretty boat' Thornycroft who are masters in traditionally boat design, got this one spot on. Therefore in her restoration it was important to keep her stunningly traditional down to every detail where possible.
The interior today has a wonderful warm and spacious ambience for her compact 32ft size whilst still providing everything one would need for a night away.
It has been a privilege to work on Elsa and with the Brightman's who showed a tenacious enthusiasm for this little ships restoration. .