Hawksley Classics, a newcomer to the wooden boat market

Etoile 18, first model from the English shipyard Hawksley Classics

The English shipyard Hawksley Classics presented at the Autumn shows a superb wooden motorboat entirely handcrafted by this couple of enthusiasts. Launched a year ago, the yard hopes to make a name for itself in the traditional shipbuilding market.

Professional reconversion for boat enthusiasts

Simon Hawksley and Laure Mora - a couple at work and in the city - are former drilling engineers who have now turned into boating professionals. Passionate about boats - especially wooden ones - but rather used to the semi-rigid boats with which they dive in Scotland, they decided to build their own model and launch their own brand: Hawksley Classics. For this reason, due to the need for professional retraining, Laure followed a course in cabinet-making and Simon in traditional shipbuilding.

In 2017, they launched their brand and a first prototype model, Étoile 18. It is with this project and its implementation that Simon validates his studies.

A wooden construction, but modern

Wishing to build boats in months in a traditional way, Simon and Laure built a workshop in Dorset, England, the place where they live. For the design, no 3D modeling, Simon draws his hull shapes by hand. A design inspired by the American motorboats of the 1960s, then taken up by the Italians, and in particular Riva, with a very rounded transom.

Even if he wants to build by hand, Simon uses modern epoxy-based materials. The 3 layers of plywood that cover the wood are made manually, while epoxy ensures rigidity and waterproofing of the boat.

For the fittings, the couple works with English suppliers, giving priority to local supplies as much as possible.

Develop a custom activity

Star 18 is the first model of the brand and a second one is already under construction in England. After Southampton, where the reception was very good, the Cannes Yachting Festival was the 2nd show for the brand. " We are waiting to see what the fallout from the show will be to see if the boat is popular. We are not specialists in motorboating, but we have a talented team in Dorset to help us build beautiful boats explains Laure. And the least we can say is that the welcome is positif?! Star 18 is an eye-catcher, it must be said that it is presented at the entrance of the Cannes salon.

Simon and Laure want to keep the custom side of their company and develop different designs, both in size and propulsion, with electric models for example.

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