A Boat on the Side

The Original Secret

Footnote from the Thirties

It was during the seventies that I first encountered the good ship Secret. She was commissioned by an old friend’s father, Hughes senior, in the thirties. He had Shuttlewoods at Paglesham build him a “sweet little smack yacht” and while she was in build he met his wife to be.

What with war clouds looming and a home to build he feared the loss of his yacht so he kept her quiet – the boat that is, but his wife discovered the other woman in an Essex boatyard - fortunately for all concerned she forgave the unfaithful spouse.

Secret duly became a family Secret and survived the war, children, careers etc but was sold in the sixties, I believe.

The photo was taken in the North Sea, returning from Holland. “They were in a bit of a hurry” relates Hughes the younger. I told them I’d do another one for them and while I’m thirty years late, my Secret 20 and forthcoming 26, at the very least share a little original Secret DNA.

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