The popular sailing journalist celebrates the 19th century pilot cutters that operated across the UK and Northern Europe in this illustrated history.
The pilot cutters that operated around the coasts of northern Europe until the First World War were some of the most seaworthy and beautiful craft ever built. With a hull and rig of particular elegance, their speed and close-windedness bought them an enviable reputation. Though many were lost, the few that survived have inspired yacht designers, sailors and traditional craft enthusiasts over the last century.
Pilot Cutters Under Sail pays tribute to these remarkable vessels with a detailed history of their development and use on the rough waters of the European seaboard. Sailing expert Tom Cunliffe describes the ships themselves, their masters and crews, and the skills they needed for the competitive and dangerous work of pilotage. He explains the differences between the craft of disparate coastsfrom the Scilly Isles and the Bristol Channel to northern France and the wild coastline of Norway. Woven into the history of their development are the stories of the men who sailed them.