A warm, friendly welcome

See on board the houseboat, visit the touring shop and relax on the riverside.

We look forward to welcoming visitors in 2018, as we celebrate ninety years since the rebuilding of a truly unique vessel.

Andrew, Timothy and Christopher

29 October 2011

Timeless Vintage Boats ~ The Vintage Wooden Boat Association


A stylish 1930's motor yacht leaving the Free Moorings
at Hoveton St John

We recently attended the Annual General Meeting of the Vintage Wooden Boat Association at Acle.

After Heather became surplus to the requirements of Colin Facey Boats (Turners Boatyard) at Horning in the early 1980s, the boat was moved across to a dyke on the opposite side of the River Bure. Thankfully Broadsman John Royal Esq noticed her laying forlorn here and managed to save Heather before she was cut up and burnt ~ houseboats were becoming unfashionable!

John Royal and a band of other enthusiasts witnessed the fast disappearing unique maritime heritage on both the Broads and around the islands of Britain and realised that action had to be taken. They embarked on establishing the Vintage Wooden Boat Association (VWBA).


The Association was founded to promote the use, maintenance and restoration of wooden boats. It is open to all wooden boats of any age. Heather attended some of the early pioneering rallies staged at the Ferry Boatyard, Horning.

Heritage vessels are part and parcel of the UK's cultural landscape and deserve to be safeguarded for future generations to enjoy. Strangely, Britain's water craft receive no statutory protection from government.

If you have a vintage boat or would like to help the VWBA, please do contact the friendly administration team of the Association. www.vwba.org

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King's Head Staithe, Hoveton, pictured from Wroxham public Parish Staithe