BU ILT 2017 PR ICE £179 ,950

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English Har­bour is what hap­pens when two di­rec­tors of a large mo­tor yacht-build­ing mono­lith dis­en­gage and go off to build boats on their own.

Adam Green­wood was the de­sign di­rec­tor of Fair­line and Alan Bow­ers the fi­nance di­rec­tor, but in 2012 they set up English Har­bour Yachts. An ex­quis­ite 16ft river launch came first and then in 2015 the com­pany launched its 27ft dis­place­ment cruiser, fol­lowed by the 29 Off­shore with its larger en­gine and bathing plat­form.

This 2017 ex­am­ple is a nearly new stock boat and the price in­cludes a year’s free berthing in any of MDL’S Thames-based mari­nas.


The English Har­bour is built up to a stan­dard, not down to a price, and nowhere is that more ob­vi­ous than the beach-house in­spired in­te­rior. Take the lou­vred doors on the hang­ing lock­ers – each lou­vre is hand­made and 8mm thick to avoid bow­ing. But above all there’s a sense of space down here. The lay­out might be an en­tirely con­ven­tional dinette for­ward, gal­ley op­po­site the heads and a dou­ble berth in a mid cabin aft, but there are acres of both height and width, the lat­ter cre­ated by the boat’s 10ft-plus beam.


That beam makes it­self felt on deck, too, where you’ll find side decks that are 9in wide – that’s wider than a Squadron 55, ac­cord­ing to some­one who should know. The cock­pit is a great size, too, and with no need for a tran­som door the aft seat­ing en­joys al­most the full width of the boat. There are plenty of prac­ti­cal touches, such as ded­i­cated fen­der stor­age and space for a lifer­aft.


The 27 has a 75hp mo­tor linked to a sail drive for in­land pot­ter­ing. For the 29 Off­shore the boat gets stern­drive power and a range of Volvo Penta D3 en­gines up to 200hp, which should yield up to about 24 knots.


An­drew Wol­sten­holme, the guru of semi-dis­place­ment hulls, de­signed the un­der­wa­ter sec­tions. The 27 gets a long keel for low speed di­rec­tional sta­bil­ity but it’s re­duced for the 29. It’s still a semi-dis­place­ment boat, though, rather than full plan­ing, which gives great sea­keep­ing, al­beit at the ex­pense of a lit­tle more spray as it charges through waves rather than bounc­ing over them.

LENGTH 29ft 6in (9.0m) BEAM 10ft 2in (3.1m) DRAUGHT 2ft 8in (0.8m) DIS­PLACE­MENT 3.7 tonnes FUEL CA­PAC­ITY 200 litres EN­GINES Twin Volvo Penta D3-200 200hp diesel

The cabin sleeps four and is ex­cep­tion­ally light and spa­cious for a 29ft open boat The beamy cock­pit has a raised helm area to max­imise the view for­ward un­der way

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