Ben Harris & Co.
Classic Wooden Boatbuilding
At Ben Harris & Co. we draw on a wide pool of highly skilled crafts people, uniting our passion for classic wooden boatbuilding.
Together we build, design and restore traditional boats that will be a long living source of joy, pride and inspiration.
Of life’s two chief prizes, beauty and truth,
I found the first in a loving heart
and the second in a laborer’s hand.
How We Work
From Timber to Tide
A wooden sailing boat is perhaps the most glorious instrument the human hand can build. The job of the boatbuilder is to breathe a new life into the supple wood and sturdy metal, rope and sail. Like skin, bone and sinews, these elements merge, with craft, to form a creature that both flies and swims, hums with its own music, provides shelter and warmth, always opening new horizons.
A great deal is asked of a boat to perform in all weathers, day in day out. So It is important to us that we choose our timbers carefully from the best sources, often selecting from trees while they are still growing. We saw and season it ourselves to ensure the quality of grain suitable for each aspect of the build.
Fastenings are of copper and bronze throughout to survive the salt. We insist on a high quality finish to protect the wood.
Inspired and Innovating
Our passion for wooden boats is inspired by the graceful lines of classic yachts and working boats.
The form and function of each boat has evolved through centuries of gradual enhancement by sailors and shipwrights to serve their specific purpose and local environment. It is in this tradition that we continue to design and build, integrating the best aspects of both classic and modern materials.
It is with this great admiration and respect for the Quay Punt’s virtues that I took detailed offsets of Curlew’s hull shape and recorded her lines.
I am keen to build a further yacht or working boat to these lines and would welcome any enquiries regarding this idea.
Ben Harris & co is a small and personal business. In our commitment to continuing the traditions and skills of classic boat building we take on apprentices, provide training and collaborate with a wide range of highly skilled local craftspeople.
Please contact us if you are interested in working together.
Lovers of the sea, the filling sail, The living tree and the copper nail
Come to us with your dream in hand
Cast off your cares and leave the land.
Ben has been working with wood throughout the UK since the age of 15. First as assistant to a cabinet maker, then he developed his skills in furniture making, and his passion for wood and forestry by working in broadleaf woodlands. Later he he tuned his skills in bespoke Oak-framed carpentry and went on to establish a sawmill and oak framing business in Scotland sourcing timber from the local estates.
In 2005 Ben moved to Cornwall to study and train in boatbuilding. He has been building boats and sailing ever since.