A United Kingdom sailor came up with the ultimate pandemic-lockdown activity — he spent three months building a sailboat, inside his house. “Oh sure,” we hear you thinking, “there are probably lots of people who’ve built model boats to pass the time.” But this isn’t a model boat. Steve Goodchild, built a 16-foot wooden Stornoway that he christened Barnacle.
“I have always done a lot of woodwork and have been a sailor since the age of 4, so I thought I would build a boat,” Goodchild said.
Great plan. But as sailors are apt to do, Goodchild decided to ‘scale up the project’ and, according to Yahoo News, the 73-year-old then had to remove his patio door to move the boat outside.
“I was always good at measurements and I knew I would get it out the door if I stuck with the initial design. I knew a long time ago it was going to be too big and I would take out the door frame.”
Goodchild said that after building the boat, dismantling the doorway was easy.
“It was still a tight fit. I don’t think anyone who saw the build thought I would be able to get it out. But I did.”
By the time the government-imposed lockdown was eased, Barnacle was ready for her maiden voyage.
“It was blowing probably a force 5 or 6, which is a bit much for a sailing dinghy, but I was determined to get it out and so I motioned it out of Paignton Harbour, I put the sails up and it went like a bird.”
While he can’t imagine how many hours he spent building the boat, the retired land surveyor said he worked on it for three and a half years.
How have you spent your lockdown time?