Tag Archives: Richard Johnstone-Bryden

Pleasure Wherry Ardea

This booklet covers the chequered story of the final Norfolk Wherry to be built. The Pleasure Wherry Ardea was commissioned in 1926 by the philanthropist Howard Hollingsworth to create an opportunity for local boatbuilders to show off their skills. The result was one of the finest Norfolk Wherries to be built. After WWII she spent 50 years cruising the inland waterways of mainland Europe before returning to her native waters for restoration in 2005. She has been operated on behalf of her current owner by the Wherry Yacht Charter Charitable Trust (WYCCT) since 2015.

The Trust very kindly invited me to write this booklet to help raise awareness of Ardea’s rich heritage and raise much needed funds towards their on-going preservation. This 20 page booklet includes 27 colour images and 1 line drawing depicting Ardea’s internal layout. Copies are available for £5 including postage and packing from The Friends of Wherry Yacht Charter. Cheques for this booklet should be made payable to Wherry Yacht Charter Charitable Trust and sent to:

Friends of Wherry Yacht Charter

c/o Mark Walters

25 Abinger Way



The booklet’s details are as follows:

Title: Ardea – The Prodigal Pleasure Wherry

Publisher: Wherry Yacht Charter Charitable Trust

ISBN 978-0-9935619-2-4

RRP £5


Posted in Uncategorized Also tagged , , , , , |

Commissioning Book for the Royal Navy’s latest aircraft carrier

2019 concluded with the publication of the Commissioning Book for the Royal Navy’s latest aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales. The first edition of this book was produced primarily for the benefit of her first Ship’s Company in time for the Commissioning Ceremony. This historic event was held in the presence of the Ship’s Lady Sponsor, HRH The Duchess of Cornwall, on 10 December 2019 in HMNB Portsmouth.

This work follows in a long line of commission books that have been published by the Royal Navy’s warships for over a century. It may seem premature to be writing a book about Prince of Wales before she has entered service, but her origins date back to the early 1990s when the Naval Staff started reviewing the options for replacing the battle proven Invincible class. I wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to interview a representative cross section of those who have been involved in the fascinating story of how Prince of Wales and her elder sister ship, Queen Elizabeth, came to be built. As part of my research, I have been in contact with a broad range of people including all of the surviving former First Sea Lords, members of the Aircraft Carrier Design Team, those involved in her construction and members of the first Ship’s Company. This has enabled me to cover the beginning of the ship’s story in a much greater depth than is normally possible when a ship’s history comes to be written in her final years.

To meet the ship’s objective of having the book ready in time for the Commissioning Ceremony, I had to conclude this instalment of the Ship’s story with the her first port of call, Invergordon, following the initial batch of sea trials to meet the production timetable. I plan to cover more of the ship’s story in a future expanded edition of this book in due course which will hopefully also be available for sale to the general public. I would therefore be delighted to hear from anyone who has photos and information that could be included within a new edition. Anyone wishing to help this work, can establish contact with me via the contact section of this website

Title: HMS Prince of Wales (VI) 2019 – To Commemorate The Commissioning of HMS Prince of Wales, Her Majesty’s Naval Base Portsmouth.

ISBN: 978-0-9932984-3-1

Publisher: Royal Navy Decommissioning / Commissioning Books

Author: Richard Johnstone-Bryden

Foreword: HRH The Duchess of Cornwall

Format: Hardback

RRP: £25

Posted in Uncategorized Also tagged , , , , |