Pears wrote of his purchase of the boat in Bringing Home the Mave Rhoe
(1908, The Yachting & Boating Monthly
). He therein describes part of the journey bringing Mave Rhoe
out of Aldeburgh
as far as Harwich
in an overnight adventure with a somewhat portly companion described only as "Live Ballast". The accompanying illustrations provided by Pears show a boat that exactly matches the photograph at the head of this page.
From this we can deduce that Pears was either the second or third owner of the boat. Unless such boats changed hands fairly often faster than the Lloyd's registry could keep up—it may be safe to guess that he was the second owner—the first being Capt. Atkinson who hired the ill-fated paid hand to bring her 'round from Teignmouth, a trip Mave Rhoe appears to have made a number of times. Assuming this order of ownership succession it must have been Atkinson who eventually had her laid up in saltings
in 1906 as described by Pears. As noted earlier, Mave Rhoe
had acquired the number 109682 by 1907. Perhaps at the hands of Capt. Atkinson or maybe driven by Pears who clearly intended to take her 'cross Channel.
The years 1909 and 1910 were busy ones for Mave Rhoe
. As previously mentioned, she figures prominently in Pears' From the Thames to the Seine
in which he describes his 1909 summer adventure sailing down the Thames (from Hole Haven
) to Ramsgate, across the Channel to France, along the coast to the Seine and Fécamp, and then back again. Hole Haven
was quite a popular starting point for Pears and many others. It was notable enough to Pears that he painted it
a number of times.
In 1910 he wrote an article, The Saga of a Small Yacht Cruise
(July 30, 1910 Supplement to the Graphic
) in which he describes a three day cruise starting again from Hole Haven
and sailing down the Thames, 'round to Dover, and across to Boulogne and back with a friend—again a novice sailor but this time with seemingly a bit more experience. Maybe the same fellow from the 1908 article? Mave Rhoe
is not mentioned by name but the accompanying artwork is unmistakeable (and would be re-used by Pears in his 1931 book).
It appears that sometime shortly thereafter, perhaps as early as 1910—probably by 1912 at the latest, Mave Rhoe
passed to her next owner whom I believe to have been the novice friend of the earlier cruises—Arthur Watts. As we shall later see Watts' writes of experiences in Mave Rhoe
that indicate that 1) he acquired her at about this time; and 2) he had some experience in sailing aboard her (which would imply experience prior to his ownership). We also know that Watts was not a small man. "Live Ballast" might have been an apropos description of him as a tyro sailor. It's also clear that by about 1912 Watts was learning to be a competent sailor in his own right. It seems that Watts initially sailed out of Harwich
and then later moved his home port to Burnham-on-Crouch
In any event, Mave Rhoe
next appears in print as described by E. Keble Chatterton in Through Holland in the Vivette
(1913 Seeley Service & Company, London) which recounts Chatterton's cruise from England to Holland and back in 1912. In a section of the book entitled "A Curious Coincidence" he relates: