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Paul Fassam

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  1. It is delightful to know that Eleanor is still 'alive' and being restored. My family have wonderful memories of cruising in her - the only canal that she never managed to traverse was the Kennett & Avon . . . I believe my in-laws took her everywhere else that was wet, including the River Nene and the 40ft drains. She was built as a permanent 4-berth with 2 occasional bunks up front in the galley. With her green glass fibre roof white cabin sides and deep blue (to the waterline) hull and thay distinctive curve to her sides, she always 'turned heads'. I last heard of her on The Ashby, where sadly, she was black from head to foot. Where is she now? I ask as my nephew, Simon Robison, who also has wonderful memories of Eleanor afloat, lives in Tamworth and would love to see how her restoration is coming along. Kind Regards, Paul Fassam
  2. The first time I ventured on the Canals was at the age of 18 in 1964. Our Rover Scout Crew hired 4 boats from Swan Line . . . they were awful! a 4-berth and a 2-berth wooden clinker built boats and two glass fibre bathtubs, a 2-berth and a 4-berth. both the wooden boats had tiny inboard 2-stroke engines and the bathtubs had 4-stroke outboards. Still - we had a whole lot of fun! All of the engines eventually failed, with the exception of the one in my boat, the 4-berth timber boat and with some tweeking around we got ours going again, so we ended up towing the other three for about 4-days back to Fradley. This towing did not do my boat much good, as the strain on the stern was far too much for her - on our last morning I well remember rolling out of my bunk and into 4 inches of water that was above the floorboards - the bilge pump could not keep up with the leaks - Happy Days!
  3. Eleanor, after completion, was movef and moored at Whilton Marina on the Grand Union but was soon moved to Weedon - amongst the Concoform Hire boats. This was from where she was eventually sold, after Dad found it just too much to upkeep and Mother-in-Law started to show signs of dementia.
  4. Mr Theakeston was the owner of Swan Line and worked on the fit out of 45ft Eleanor. She had a wooden floor with vinyl covering and a carpet runner from the stern steps to the galley - all of the coachwork was of varnished wood. Mr Theakeston made a box/tube with a moveable flap to divert the heat from the engine into the cabin if it was a cold day. I must admit, a Pint of Theakestons Bitter out here in Cyprus would be like manna from Heaven! To think that at first I could not remember his name!
  5. Hi there, my name is Paul Fassam and Eleanor was built new by Swan Line for my father-in-law, Eric Swinfen, who passed away in 2000. I have some photos of Eleanor (mostly exterior) which I am happy to share with you plus there is a painting in oils of her which I can photograph. Eleanor sadly only had a 2-cylinder 13hp Lister engine and was always underpowered - stopping her being the most embarrassing thing, especially in a lock . . . all noise and diesel fumes! Tried to get Dad to either go for the 3-cylinder 20hp engine and/or change the prop! All to no avail. Eleanor also had an awful 'yacht' toilet (now happily banned) but I still have nightmares about stripping the toilet down after our children had blocked or jammed it! Please let me know if you would like more info. and/or any photos. Regards, Paul F.
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