Sailing yachts

Brixham Trawler Gaff Ketch

(REF: 19884)


  • Designer: Traditional
  • Year: 1892
  • Location: Devon
  • Length on deck: 80'
  • Beam: 19'
  • Draft: 10'6"

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Wooden Ships Comments on this Brixham Trawler Gaff Ketch

Originally built in 1892 at Galmpton on the River Dart, Leader was one of the largest of the Brixham Sailing Trawlers built and fished in UK waters until 1907 when she was sold to Swedish owners when she continued to fish until 1953 when she went into coastal trading.

In the early 1970’s she was bought by the Swedish Sea School in Gothenburg, converted for sail training and operated there until 1985 when she returned to the UK as a charter vessel on the West coast of Scotland.  Leader is coded Category 2 under the MCA and is one of the most notable vessels in the UK traditional charter fleet.  She has become a very successful boat and has worked every season around the English Channel and on the west coast of Scotland, proving to be a very comfortable and impressive vessel with a great reputation.

In more recent years she has undergone several major rebuilds which have included all new frames, deck and much new planking thus ensuring her structure and longevity.  See below for more details of the rebuilding work.

She has a total of 19 single berths with nicely appointed guest accommodation allowing private and comfortable space for each guest.

A rare opportunity to purchase a fine historic charter vessel with a superb reputation.

She was ashore in May 2021 and had a structural hull survey carried out.  The result of this survey was that 9 planks were replaced along with some repairs around the stern and new caulking where necessary.  This work has been well documented and stands Leader in good stead for the coming years.


Length on Deck                 80′

Length Overall                   97′

Beam                                    19′

Draft                                      10’6″

Registered Tonnage       108tons

Length on Deck                 80′

Length Overall                   97′

Beam                                    19′

Draft                                      10’6″

Registered Tonnage       108tons




Planked in a mix of larch and oak, fastened to heavy sawn oak frames with galvanised boat nails.

Major refit in 2001 when the interior was removed, the boat completely re-framed and re-fastened with good deal of planking replaced at the same time.

Grown oak floors across the centreline.  All internal ballast of iron, approximately 15 tons.

Deck replaced entirely in 2010-2011.  Solid straight laid pine deck, caulked and payed with butyl rubber, on new deck beams and beam shelf.

High bulwark all round on oak stanchions with oiled oak capping rail.  Entire bulwark replaced in 2010-2011 with the new deck.

Varnished iroko skylights, hatches and entrance hatch.

Wheel steering with a rack and pinion to a large solid wooden rudder.




Gaff ketch rig on solid keel stepped wooden masts.

Varnished wooden booms, gaffs and bowsprit.

Complete mizzen rig removed and serviced  in 2018.  Main mast rig removed and serviced in 2019.

Galvanised steel standing rigging with deadeyes and lanyards to external galvanised chain plates.

Running backstays on tackles.

Full set of sails including mainsail, mizzen and main topsail made in 2017.




Daewoo L136 6cyl 160hp diesel fitted new in 2004.  Serviced annually.

Centreline shaft to a fixed 3 blade bronze propeller, 6.5knots cruising speed at 10 litres/hour.

4 separate stainless steel fuel tanks, total of 1040 litres capacity.

11 x 12 volt batteries for domestics and engine starting, located below decks and in a separate box on deck.  Ships systems run on 24 volt, navigation gear works on 12 volts.

Mastervolt MASS 24/75C battery charger.  Installed shore power system.

Beta Marine 25Kva diesel generator.

Hydraulics for windlass powered by a 240 volt AC motor.

2,300 litres of fresh water in 3 separate tanks forward.




19 single berths for crew and guests.

Steps down into the main cabin over the main engine.

Galley at the base of the steps with a Lotus 4 burner gas stove with oven and grill, stainless sink and large top loading fridge and freezer to port.  Fridges run on 240 volt or 24 volt.  Hot and cold pressurised water in the galley.

Chart desk to port at base of the companion steps.  Forward facing with a lifting desk.

Port side passage going aft to crew accommodation with 3 single berths.  Generator located on the centreline in the crew cabin.

Port side passage going forward into main saloon with a large saloon table and U-shaped seating.  Fold down table leaf to accommodate settee on port side.  Pilot berth behind the settee.

Passage forward into the midships guest sleeping area.  12 guest berths within this space, each with a curtain for privacy and a numbered storage locker for kit.  LED light and USB charging point in each berth.

Forward with steps up to the forehatch.  Separate crew cabins with 2 single berths in each.

2 separate heads compartments with a Jabsco manual sea toilet in each, plus a hand basin with pressurised hot and cold water.

Separate shower compartment.

Bosuns stores/workshop in the forepeak



Full specification and details available upon request





These particulars have been prepared in good faith from information provided by the Vendors and are intended as a guide, Wooden Ships cannot guarantee or warrant the accuracy of this information nor warrant the condition of the vessel. The Purchaser should instruct his agent or surveyor to validate all details as necessary and satisfy himself with the condition of the vessel and its equipment.



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