This text taken directly from a letter written to Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club by Rob Cameron in 2014.
As requested a short history of Bronzewing Kate formally Kareelah RF27.
After much research I have found the launching date of Kareelah in an article in the Daily news of 31st October 1946 with a photo. (Attached) Please note the position of the anchor drain hole with straight bow and bob stay plate in all the photos.
Briefly, the boat was built by a member of the Club, Jim Galloway, either at his residence in Ford Street West Midland or at his business which was a foundry also in West Midland.( Information thanks to John Green, what a memory!) Launched at the Catalina apron at Crawley on 31st October 1946 it was then registered at RFBYC as a Bermudan rigged yacht RF 27 . According to the club register (Attached) it was powered by a marinised 1928 Pontiac petrol engine of 23 hp. Two banks of 3 cylinders in line with the ignition separating them.
Kareelah started in the first Bunbury race on Wednesday 25 Feb 1948 but retired.(Attached) In a write up after the race the correspondent reported that Kareelah’s crew managed to start their engine and keep it going with torch batteries.
Kareelah was then sold to Harold Millett before 1954 when Jim Galloway launched his next project a steel hulled cutter Enchantress, which he raced at CYC.
The trail goes a little cold then but I have come across a Museum photo of Kareelah as a fishing boat in Albany, LFBA56. (Attached)
Maybe the information I was given when we bought it as to its build date and builder was when it was converted to a fishing boat. Namely, Coleman 1956.
Sometime in the 60’s or 70’s it was converted to a pleasure boat. Many people have said to me that Kareelah now Bronzewing was a regular visitor to Rotto from that time. Also at that time, we guess, it was repowered with its current engine a Perkins 236 of about 80hp. We think that the Sambrialo brothers redid the coach house as many boat historians have said to us that the Sambrialo style is evident.
My brother, Euan, and I, have added Kate to the name after our late mother so now it is registered with the club as Bronzewing Kate.
We feel that this boat has sufficient identity and provenance to be allocated the sail number RF27 as it was its original registration number when it took part in the first Bunbury race. It was nominated in subsequent races but I am unsure whether Kareelah actually started or finished any.
Designer TBC Builder JimGalloway Launched 1946, Perth Length 9.9m, 32.5ft
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