Friday, 20 July 2012


After the longest voyage she's ever taken, Orion is hoisted onto the National Trust's stand at Builth Wells.  
A little bit of maritime history was made yesterday when "Orion", one the few surviving Aberdaron lobster and herring fishing boats arrived at the National Trust's stand at the Royal Welsh Show ground.

Orion, which is named after the local cove Porth Orion, is one of two boats now in the care of the National Trust that were originally owned by Guto Christmas Evans of Cae Mur .  The other boat – Annie – is awaiting restoration, but it is hoped that Orion can join the other surviving Aberdaron boats in the annual regatta next summer.

Guto Christmas Evans promised his father that he would make sure that  his boats would be looked after.  Both are now in the care of the National Trust.
The last people to carry on the age-old boat building tradition at Aberdaron were Siôn Tomos and Wil Jones; both worked through the first half of the 20th century.  It is said that Siôn Tomos, who at one time was also the village postmaster, had to be cajoled to build the boats by his wife when they needed the money. 

These little boats - of which 30 have survived - were built to a unique design favoured for its manoeuvrability in the rough waters of the Bardsey Sound, where willow lobster-pots were laid in deep water close to the shore.  Some say that the design retains features that may have been handed down from the Vikings.

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