Mytica Pops Up On eBay, June 2016
The only boat built to Harrison Butler's Paida design is up for sale on eBay for £5,000. She's located in Ayr Harbour, on Scotland's West coast. From an internet search I've deduced that her name is Mytica.
The Paida plans are in THB's book Cruising Yachts Design and Performance, published in 1945, although they first appeared in The Yachtsman magazine in June 1941 in the final installment of a seven part series that was later turned into the book. Rather than obtain the large scale plans from the designer, Mytica was built in Ceylon towards the end of the second World War from the drawings in the book or magazine. (Ceylon was renamed Sri Lanka in 1972)
It would be good to obtain side and end elevation photographs of the hull to ascertain how good a job the builders made of following the tiny plans. The information on file is that she was built from teak off-cuts from the Royal Naval Dockyard's work building Motor Launches, at Trincomalee, for the British Royal Navy. Indian rupee coins are rumoured to have been used as clench washers, and the brass hatch slides, if still original, have a Broad Arrow stamped on them.
The HBA's Authentication Officer, Paul Leinthall-Cowman writes, “If this yacht is in fact built to the Paida design then we should welcome the new owner and existing one with open arms. I had thought it doubtful that a war time design of this size would ever be built and for her to turn up in Scotland having been built in Ceylon is surprising indeed”.
The current owner, Tom Masterman, writes; “I do love the boat very much and the only reason I'm selling her is that I have the chance at a bigger teak boat. I found her in Maldon in a derelict state and have spent the last year sorting her out. She sails like a dream”.
A little is known of Mytica's voyages. She was shipped to the UK in 1947 prior to the British colony gaining independence in 1948. When stationed in West Mersea she was stolen and run ashore on the Nass. She filled and lost her original mast. In 1976, under Andrew Craig-Bennett, she won the Little Ship Club Royal Oak Trophy for a trip from Walton, across the English Channel to Rotterdam and back to Harwich. It was Andrew who added the long bowsprit, and changed her 3/4 bermudan rigg to gaff. He also added the forehatch, which was a bit of mahogany found floating down the Medway in 1973.
Ned and Kate Philips made an impressive trip in this tiny boat, along the English Channel from Pin Mill to Cornwall and back. They went on to by buy Viking to sail to the Caribbean and back, and sold Mytica to a chap who had a lot of work done on her, to a very good and thoughtful standard, including new decks and cockpit. Alas, his circumstances changed and she sat neglected in a mud berth for several years until Tom Masterman rescued her.
Incidentally, the Association has available professionally digitized, full sized drawings of the Paida design should anyone wish to build a second boat to this design.
Andrew Craig-Bennett, who was Mytica's custodian in the 1970's,
sailed her extensively on the UK's East Coast
and on an Award Winning trip across to the Netherlands
Built : c1947 at the Royal Naval Dockyard, Trincomalee, Ceylon.
LOA : 18' 0"
LWL : --
Beam : 8' 0"
Draught : --
Displacement : "Two and a half tonner"
Mytica Custodians & Home Ports
Tom Masterman (2014-2016...) Ayr, Scotland
Ned & Kate Philips (1984-?) Pin Mill
Andrew Craig-Bennett (1973-1984) East Coast of England
Mr Galvin (?-1973) Woolverstone Marina
Page last updated : July 2016