Cockwells - Merlin
June 12, 2019 Merlin showcases the superlative skills of the shipwright at English Braids Falmouth Classics

We are pleased to see that Merlin of Falmouth, the 48’ Bristol Pilot Cutter that was handcrafted by Dave Cockwell and our team of skilled shipwrights between 2008 and 2010, is participating in this weekend’s three-day rally of traditional sailing craft – the English Braids Falmouth Classics – an event that we are also proudly sponsoring.

Bristol Pilot Cutters were among the last commercial sailing craft in the UK to be replaced by steam or diesel vessels. Delivering pilots to ships in all weathers in the notorious waters of the Bristol Channel, they earned a reputation for immense seaworthiness and have since been used to explore some of the most remote regions in the world.


Merlin of Falmouth was designed along the lines of Peggy. Launched in 1902, Peggy is one of the last pilot cutters to be built and is still sailing today.


“Crafted over two years by our artisan shipwrights, riggers and sailmakers, we custom-built this private yacht to the superlative standards for which we are renowned using time-honoured methods,” explains Dave Cockwell. “We constructed her hull from an oak frame and larch planking, cut from the round, and cast bespoke bronze fittings. Her spars were made from Douglas Fir by Noble Masts and her rigging was completed by traditional Bristol rigger, Dennis Platten. Not only is she a dream to sail and handle in harbour, she also offers plenty of scope for relaxing on board with her spacious decks and comfortable cockpit.”


Combining the superlative skills of the traditional shipwright with innovative engineering and boatbuilding techniques, we also equipped Merlin of Falmouth with the latest marine electronics, safety equipment and navigation systems.


Merlin of Falmouth is now owned by Classic Charters Limited and her main role is to support charities such as the SetSail Trust in Guernsey. She is also the flagship of the Dartmouth Distillery Co., award-winning makers of Dartmouth English Gin and fellow sponsor of the English Braids Falmouth Classics.


We look forward to witnessing Merlin 48 of Falmouth on the water this weekend. We may even join in with a sea shanty or two!

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