View Full Version : Coble and double-ender register

3rd September 2008, 13:36
Does anyone know if there is a register of surviving cobles and double-ender in existance. From experiance of a recent trip to the North East there are not an inconsiderable number of these craft that have no form of identication, name or port registration number, and as a result they remain unidentified and their history hidden, if not lost.

Would other contributors be willing to supply information and if available links to photos to enable a database to be built up? If a list could be started is there anyway the list could be published on the Trawler Photo website so that it could be update as new information was received?

Thoughts please.



3rd September 2008, 15:03
Hi as far as I know there is no full list of cobles. The Coble Keelboat Group have a list but far from compleate, A lot of cobles were not registered as fishing vessels...

3rd September 2008, 15:34
Thanks for reply - I saw the list that was published on the Coble and Keelboat Society website but as you mentioned it was far from complete and it did not help to trace a particular boats history nor did it cover cobles that have been scrapped or destroyed..

Tried to open that web site earlier today and for some reason it came up as unobtainable. May be a temporary problem and I will try again later.

I have a good mind to start a new register but I would need a lot of help and somewhere to display the register.

3rd September 2008, 15:43
Problem is some were built as one offs and you only come across some of the info by chance a few were built round brid & flambro as one offs by the owners. some not even fishing vessels so a long job it will be..

3rd September 2008, 17:52
agreed it will be a long and painstaking job but i believe that our fishing heritage deserves it.i would help in anyway possible.after all i have not much else to do and i need something to occupy my time.just say the word.

3rd September 2008, 20:05
A start can be made by trawling though the photgraphs posted on this website. If you notice I always add the words coble or double-ender in the cooments box as it is then possible by using the right search criteria to pull up relevent photographs. Also going through the England Under 10m, decommissioned and vintage groups would help to find the photos that you are interested in.

The main problem is finding the right format to display the information and of course the web site space to host the data. Perhaps Trawler Admin can help with some suggestions?

Finally what information need to be collated and how do you cross refer data entries relating to the same boat, ie change of names, registration numbers, current locations etc and who would do all this work.

Lot of work involved not just to start the data base but then to keep it current and relevent. However it would be really good if it were to be introduced. I know, as I mentioned, that there are numerous cobles and double-enders whose identity is either lost or known only by one or two people. A search through this site will identify the number of these vessels that have been posted without a name or registartion number.

I also think an at danger list would be very useful to try an maintain what we have. No more of these craft are being built, some are slipping into derilication slowly and others have gone. Once they have all gone there will be no more - no one will have the knowledge to build these complicated hulls.

Fiinally some cobles and double-ender have been preserved either in working ownership or by dedicate enthusiasts. Some are owned by individuals and others by grouip. I would dearly love to generate enough interest to save a Whitby built example of both types of craft. Does anybody else feel the same way?

3rd September 2008, 20:19
Cracking idea if you ask me. It would be fairly easy to compile a list of the surviving registered cobles (and those scrapped in the last ten or twenty years) and other info such as when and where built, who by, owners etc.

What would be hard is creating a list of all the cobles without port registrations. Here you're relying on people remembering them being built, particularly in lesser visited places (i.e. it would be fairly easy to get the history of the non registered ones in Whitby as there's a few people on here who live there or regularly visit). At least with a registration you've got rough information readily available.

I'd be more than willing to help out, I'm in no way a genius on the subject, but it would be good to see a database (with pictures ) built up of at least the surviving registered cobles and double enders, the vessel section on the Hull Trawler site would be a good model to follow.

3rd September 2008, 20:52
Excellent if you think its a goer? Will look at the Hull web site tomorrow.

One thought though - easy identifying Whitby cobles and double-enders!!! Afraid its not that easy, I have posted quite a few photograghs asking for identification. Some good responses with positive ID's, a least one where there is much doubt, and this coble sits right by the side of the bridge, and a number that remain unidentified!! Its a big job I feel, are there any other on the site that would like to help?

7th September 2008, 11:47
not a lot I can do from so far away . Have you set an Excel spreadsheet up to begin with, if not I could always help.
regards :)

8th September 2008, 14:33
Hi dave - can set up a spreadsheet but problem is where do we hold the document nd who has access to update it. I was hoping admin or one of the moderators would give a steer but they have been quiet on the subject so far.

It is clear thoughn that with so many of these boats being deregistered their history is fast diaappearing and a living register would help track those remaining and highligt those that need a definative identity. Even those that know their subject sometimes disagree with each other over the identity of a particular boat and there are also many that remain unidentified on this web site despite requests for help with identification.

Can I please ask Trawler Admin for their advice on the best way to set up a reguister on the web site if it is at all possible.

8th September 2008, 19:04
My thoughts are that the obvious people to approach are the Coble and Keelboat Society. They have members from the Scottish border right down to hull, possibly further. These members obviously have an interest and knowledge of the subject, so seems the natural starting point to me.

9th September 2008, 13:53
Thanks for your commet graham and I would agree with you that the Coble & Keel Boat Society would be a good starting point. However their web site seems to have disappeared and I can no longer find their URL http://www.coble-keelboatsociety.org/. The society may have changed their website and if so and if anyone knows the new address I would be grateful if they caould pass it on.

The other observation I have, and this is not in any way meant as a critisism, is that when the web site was available it had a list of cobles to be found in various locations in the North East and elsewhere but this was by no means up to date and some of the information was rather sketchy. It did allow me to identify a few cobles, but others remained unidentified and, if my memory serves me well, I dont think it helped identify any double-enders.

This highlights one of the main problems with any list or register, the initial data upload has to be accurate, minus any guess work, and then it needs to be maintained and updated. Finally it has to be of use, if no one is interested in maintaining the history of particualr cobles and double-enders setting up a regsiter is pointless but if interest does exist any data must be kept current.

The other major benefit Trawler Photo has, in addition to the number of people contributing photographs and information, is the ever growing photographic record that is being assembled of these craft and if a link could be made between the photographic record and a data register it would form a unique historical record. I personally have not seen another web site with so many photographs of both cobles and double-enders and it is still expanding. Perhaps we have an opportunity to set up a record which will prove very valuable in the futrure.

21st December 2008, 14:35
I have just found this thread on the forums and the strange thing is I was thinking just the same thing. My interest is in the coble and I have a comprehensive listing of them north of the Tyne compiled with the invaluable help of my friend Dave Durward of Blyth. i also have a list south of the Tees but the gap in my knowledge is North of the Tees/South of the Tyne. It is reasonably easy to follow the whereabouts of registered cobles although winter can be a time of movement from port to port. However as noted unregistered cobles such as my own are more difficult to follow, as they are bought and sold more often and scrapped at intervals.Two have gone at Teesmouth in the last 3 months with another due for destruction. So I will help anyway I can. It is an important issue so lets get it up and running.With under 10metre decommissioning on the horizon how many more will disappear. Would the administrators agree to such a listing on the site and could they help?

21st December 2008, 21:45
Still reckon the CKS is the best starting place. Their website is up and running again after being down for a short time while someone was working on it. Dave D is indeed a valuable contact.

27th December 2008, 13:52
The only problem is with the CKS is that they rely on members like myself and Dave to provide them with the info which we have both done and then it isn't used. Also no other members seem interested enough to do the same in their area. Once again it is back to those people with the interest to do it.

28th December 2008, 10:35
Well, seems like you're the one with the interest (stontamar seems to have disappeared), so I suggest that you get on with the project if you feel that strongly. I truly wish you all the best of luck.
I do resent your comment about no other members being interested. I have been a member of CKS for several years and as a solo proect i have been writing up the histories of boatyards from Berwick to Aberdeen. Have covered about 25 yards now, which must run to over a thousand pages, tho about half of that is pics. Have also done the Seahouses yard, altho that's further south than i intended to go. At the end of the day, you do whatever research interests you most. Good luck in your project.

28th December 2008, 14:19
I hadn't meant to cause any offence and it is good to hear about your research. However my grumble with the CKS is that it doesn't seem to be going anywhere. This is not just my view but also of a number of members and ex members i've talked to. A few years ago the magazine and bulletins were full of interesting articles and up to date info which has all but disappeared. I realise that there has been a change in the people running it and I know that there is a very strong Northumberland section, but unless members start sharing info cobles will be a distant memory. There thats my rant over.
Just to wish you good luck with your project.

28th December 2008, 16:48
Don't worry, might disagree with your comments, but have not taken offence! A few of the CKS members have supplied pics and bits of info to help me, particularly Dave D, also Peter W and Gloria W.
One way that you cuold maybe help the CKS forward is by standing for nomination for the commitee at the AGM, or perhaps you already are on the commitee? Must admit that I've not been to an AGM for the last coupla years. Intended to go down to HL this year, but ended up in Preston, long story!

29th December 2008, 02:20
Hi dave - can set up a spreadsheet but problem is where do we hold the document nd who has access to update it. I was hoping admin or one of the moderators would give a steer but they have been quiet on the subject so far.

It is clear thoughn that with so many of these boats being deregistered their history is fast diaappearing and a living register would help track those remaining and highligt those that need a definative identity. Even those that know their subject sometimes disagree with each other over the identity of a particular boat and there are also many that remain unidentified on this web site despite requests for help with identification.

Can I please ask Trawler Admin for their advice on the best way to set up a reguister on the web site if it is at all possible.

if you want to do it on a spreadsheet the best and easiest way to set one up that many people can contribute to is use google docs


set it up in excel first if you want then upload to google, email whoever you want to contribute to it an they all get access to it, its held online, so no documents to shuffle about and loads of people can work on it at once

Peter W
12th January 2009, 18:10
I've just spotted this thread about cobles. It was me who did a schedule of cobles four or five years ago and I let the Coble and Keelboat Society put it on their website. I got a lot of support from Dave Durward but little interest from anyone else at the time. I don't think anybody in the CKS is likely to do any more about a schedule now. The only way to get action out of CKS is to get on the committee and stir them up.
If anybody wants me to email them a copy of my Excel spreadsheet please get in touch.

Davie Tait
12th January 2009, 20:46
Peter do you want a section of the forum for the coble list ?? It seems that its a shame that the information is not readily available and we have the ability here to host it if thats what you wish to see. We also have the ability to link to photos in our gallery showing the boats on the register.

Let me know Peter and if you want this I can set it up in a few minutes


Peter W
13th January 2009, 12:12
Davie, I can email the coble spreadsheet to you if you like. You can see what you can do with it. If I was doing it again I would probably do it differently but I'll leave it to someone else to sort it; I don't want to manage it again.
Please let me know how to email it to you.

12th February 2009, 14:27

Peter has sent me a spreadsheet of his info on this and putting it against mine I think I could make a start on it if you could set me something up on the site similar to Peters spreadsheet

Davie Tait
19th February 2009, 23:56
If one of you can post up a couple of lines from the Spreadsheet I will see how best to set out a section for it


28th February 2009, 13:38
I've been trying to upload some lines from the doc without success.
Basically we need a spreadsheet with the following info across the top.
Location,date,name,regist,colours,picture,details, built.
Once the spreadsheet is on we can then fill in and update as needed.

Davie Tait
28th February 2009, 16:26
This would be easier done in the Gallery. I can set up a gallery that is sorted by alphabetical name with all of the input details you need and we can use a drawing of a coble with "picture needed" for those that we can't find. I'll have a look tonight and see how we can do this.


Davie Tait
28th February 2009, 16:48

OK hows that for you ?? If you use anyone else's photos please remember to ask first and leave a note in the comments about the original photographer ( photos can be saved by clicking on the main photo then use right click / save to save it to your pc ). I'll put up a photo image for you to use where there isn't a photo available. I've set it so its only your account that can upload to that gallery , if there is anyone else that is willing to help post below here and once I know who is helping I will set the gallery for them as well. This will keep the register off everyone's gallery list during uploads except for the guys that are updating the information.


28th February 2009, 21:34
Good to see it up and running.

28th February 2009, 21:47
Just thought, I have a list of all the cobles built at Dawsons if that is any help to you. Will have to chase it up tho, lent it out a few weeks ago and never came back yet.

Davie Tait
28th February 2009, 21:49
If you want to help by adding your list Graham let me know

1st March 2009, 00:50
Feel free to use any of my photos, glad to see it's up and running.

1st March 2009, 15:32
Thats great Davie. I'm away for a few days with work but i'll atart putting in details as soon as i'm back.

2nd March 2009, 14:48
Davie, is there any way of adding a list of ports so people can go straight to that one to see the cobles there?

2nd March 2009, 17:02
Thanks Davie thts great. I'll start posting when I return from being away with work.Cheers

Davie Tait
2nd March 2009, 17:31
For those that are on the list please remember to leave current photos where they are and to upload duplicates into the register gallery as that is a historical list and we want to leave the active fleet list ( and the angling lists ) as is please

8th March 2009, 19:49
Ok just put some photos onto it, wondering whether we're wanting one photo for each boat or multiple photos per boat (cos I've got quite a lot of some boats)?

Davie Tait
8th March 2009, 21:12
If they are taken at the same time then I suppose port , starboard and either a bow or stern photo would be ok. If it shows a different paint scheme then 3 more in that order would be ok as well just so we have a good record of what the boats looked like through their lives.

15th March 2009, 11:19
The following is alist of builds from Dawsons, Seahouses of working cobles.
1947 Vanguard BH134 (coble mule),
1948 Moonbeam BK253, Elizabeth Taylor SN?, Golden Gleam BK259.
1949 Margaret Alice BK2, Green Pastures BH7, June Morn BK33, Kathleen BK46.
1950 Research BK51, Border Queen BK62.
1954 Barry B SN45.
1955 Just Reward BK17.
1960 Violet Stephenson BK124.
1968? Burncrest SN28.
1969 Anne B BK257.
1970 Anne Noble HL26.
1971 Conquest SD26.
1976 Eleanor Dawson LH277.
1979 Supreme ii LH50.
1987 Ann Noble LH104.
1988 Helen Esther LH185.
There was also the unregistered pleasure coble, Faithful, in 1988 for Paul Battey and others of Holy Island.
Think this list is fairly accurate, altho I am unsure about the year of Burncrest, may have been built a few years earlier. Maybe someone can clarify that. Do know that Burncrest was the only coble built in the open, being too big for the workshop (41' oal).

8th April 2009, 10:34
As farmiliar as I was with the "Burncrest " if Paul (Dogsbody) could ask Barry Owens , it was his uncle Joe and Pat Ventress, that had the vessel in Sunderland. he could tell you when it was built. I do know that she had a 72hp lister in her.and forrard accomodation.
regards . :)

8th May 2009, 17:04
Hi Graham,

The Burncrest Was Built Between 1961 / 62.

Cheers, Paul.

12th May 2009, 22:46
Thanx for that, Paul. Have been given various dates for this one, one of which was 1961. Ronnie Dawson, the builder, thought it was later, but time plays tricks with memories!

Paul Baker
5th September 2012, 23:08
I am the current owner of a Filey coble called Neptune 2 after a very long journey down the motorway! She is moored in Newquay, Cornwall and is a cracking fishing boat for myself and my family. Does anyone know anything about her? Where she was built, by who? Was she a salmon fishing boat? Were the huge, heavy oars used to row her out through the surf? Is there a Neptune 1 out there? Is the paint holding her together or shall I strip it all back... I am tempted! If anyone knows anything about Neptune 2 I would be really grateful. Thanks in advance.

Bob Allen
2nd October 2012, 22:05
Hi There Paul,
I am an ex Whitby fisherman and coble man and I have a Whitby built coble called Morning Star, here in Plymouth.
Have you any pics of your coble, I would like to see em as the one I am thinking of from Filey is not a coble but a two headed boat, or a double ender
as many people call them these days
If ever you are Plymouth way give me shout and I will take you down to have a dekko at my littlecoble.

Best Wishes

Paul Baker
30th March 2013, 15:57
Hi there, just seen this post, thanks for replying. There is a photo on here somewhere, in 'salmon net fishing boats' section of the site. It's a Doble ended, about 18ft long. I've got it on the drive at the moment, am wanting to do done repairs and paint before mooring in Newquay harbour this year. I have the skills to repair but not the know how! On trips out, she'd let some water in, nothing major but enough. Is there a way to seal the bottom? Also. What paint should I use, 2pac? Any advice would be great. My e mail address is bekoshipaul@hotmail.co.uk. Would love to know done of the history of Neptune 2. I'd did read something about a sister boat called stardust but of sure.

Many thanks. Paul

8th June 2013, 06:08
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7th October 2013, 07:38
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