The Feadship Heritage Fleet celebrates the builder’s classic yachts. need more please words to fill.
“It was pushing againstanopen door,” Rory Brooks, vice chairman of the Feadship Heritage Fleet, says of selling the idea to potential members back in 2013. That’s when the fleet was formed to unite classic Feadship owners, provide events and services, and foster the Dutch builder’s heritage. Owners of Feadships at least 30 years old were eager to join. ¶ Brooks owns two yachts of that vintage: Heavenly Daze, a 1972 105-footer, and Hera, a 51-footer built in 1956. Heavenly Daze inspired the creation of the fleet. When the yacht’s 40th birthday rolled around and the Brookses realized they didn’t know much about her history, the couple took a birthright trip of sorts to Feadship’s De Vries shipyard in Aalsmeer, the Netherlands. ¶ “We expected to walk around with one person for half an hour, and then half of the De Vries family showed up for the day,” Brooks says. His enthusiasm for the Feadship legacy was sparked, as was his search for owners who felt the same. ¶ Since the fleet’s founding, development has been constant. In 2016, the group established a research committee devoted to acquiring photos, information and anything else
that documents the builder’s rich heritage. This year, the organization expanded its board and appointed a new chairman, Wim van Kampen, a member since day one with his 34-foot-6-inch 1958-built New Wave. Ideas, like a captain’s blog, where those at the wheel of classic Feadships can share words of wisdom, are on the horizon. ¶ More immediate is the annual Feadship Heritage Fleet Rendezvous, which will be held in July at the Royal Van Lent Shipyard in Kaag, the Netherlands. Some of the planned activities include yacht hopping on Friday, and “on Saturday, we have a little rally throughout the lakes,” van Kampen says. Saturday morning is expected to include the fleet’s grand assembly, during which budget, member ideas and more will be discussed. ¶ Membership growth is atop the Feadship Heritage Fleet’s to-do list. The organization currently has 60 to 70 members, but “we are sure there are 350 [classic Feadships] still sailing,” van Kampen says. “If we find more and more people, it will strengthen the organization and give us more opportunities.”
“WE EXPECTED TO WALK AROUND WITH ONE PERSON FOR HALF AN HOUR, AND THEN HALF OF THE DE VRIES FAMILY SHOWED UP.” — Rory Brooks, vice chairman, Feadship Heritage Fleet