The backbone of the Navy

CFH, a ketch with an auxiliary motor screw, was built by James Goss at Calstock in 1892. She was commissioned by Mr Hamley and named after a member of his family. She is carvel built, with an elliptical stern and is said to have been constructed partly from timber blown down on the Cotehele estate during the great snow blizzard which began on March 12 1891. CFH was sold to owners in Brittany at St. Brieuc in 1911 and was employed in their usual business of carrying pit props from Brittany ports to South Wales. In 1914, she had an engine installed, made by Plenty & Sons Ltd of Newbury.

 She was sold to a group of owners from Braunton in Devon; these were Henry Smith Gould Clark, a master mariner who held sixteen shares in the vessel; John Clarke, a master mariner also with sixteen shares; Henrick Joseph Incledon, a merchant with twelve shares; George Gould Clarke, a retired master mariner with twelve shares and Thomas Clarke Welch, a master mariner with four shares. During the First World War, CFH was chartered by the Admiralty and sent to Scapa Flow in Orkney, where she acted as a fleet tender. As such, she was always under power and commanded by one of the Clarks of Braunton, who was able to ensure she was properly maintained. At the end of the war, she was re-rigged and returned to general home trade.


Where is she now?

We believe that CFH has been scrapped, and she is now registered on The National Archive of Historic Vessels. Please get in touch if you know more.