SOLD – no longer available

Crinan Boatyard is delighted to offer
for sale a striking Bermudan sloop, Greylag



More information can be found here:

Built in 1962 by Alexander Robertson & Son, Greylag was designed by David Boyd for Colonel W H Whitbread, as a yacht he could sail short-handed when not aboard Lone Fox. Her design provenance is unquestionable, Boyd having designed two British challengers for the America’s Cup. Greylag retains her striking “Whitbread Green” topsides.

Greylag is 37’ 8” overall, constructed of African mahogany and British oak frames, with African mahogany planking. Her cockpit, deck and deck¬house sides are teak. She was originally built to Lloyd’s 100A1 and retained that classification for many years.

Crinan Boatyard has undertaken extensive restoration and refit work which is fully described on the Sandeman Yacht Company website –

Lying Crinan, Argyll.

CRINAN BOATYARD – – 01546 830 232


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The Story of Greylag II as recalled by Colonel Whitbread’s daughter, Sarah Freemantle – November 2014

Greylag II has been around Crinan and Ardfern for a number of years, and I went on board her about 15 years ago. I always keep an eye out for her, and ask after her. In fact I asked about her in Ardfern in February, but nobody knew what I was talking about it – I don’t know the new management at Ardfern and, without a boat up there, have lost touch.

She was owned by Lord Shawcross after us, and recently by a doctor whose name I was given, but inevitably lost the piece of paper the name was written on!  She is a lovely boat and she has come up for sale a number of times.  Most times I have known about it, and would have loved to have bought her. She came up for sale, I think at Ardfern, years ago for about £30,000, and I was very tempted, but there simply wasn’t enough interest in my family to take on such a burden, and the cost of keeping her going would have been quite a problem, so I stuck with my Shrimper.  I would have loved to have had her as she is a super cruising boat which my father had built and set up for cruising for two people so she is very easy to sail and well behaved.

Basically I learnt to sail on her, crewing for my father on the Solent.  Francis Chichester had a mooring about two above us on the Beaulieu River at Bucklers Hard, and used to knock on the hull to wake us up as he rowed down to get the papers, and come to breakfast on the way back up.  Aged 15, I was a hopeless cook, so guess who cooked the bacon and eggs!  Later, when I left school and we were concentrating on cruising Lone Fox on the West Coast, my father lent her to Francis who put a steering gear on the back and sailed her single-handed to Cork (breaking some record or other on the way).  This was so that Francis had something to sail while the Gypsy Moth, which he sailed round the world in, was being built – this took a long time and was rife with problems. Father then cruised her from Crosshaven until he sold her and I did not sail in her again.

Greylag was dismasted with my Father off the Irish SW coast in a hell of a gale – all very peaceful apparently (according to his crew) – one moment there was noise and wind and crashing of waves, then a frightful crash, and then she just sat very sensibly in the water while they sorted everything out. I believe the life boat was involved, and also a classic family argument about who should have the only working (ancient cork) lifejacket on board!  Another wooden mast was made in the Clyde at considerable expense.  It was delivered all the way to Crosshaven where the lorry driver backed it into a wall and shattered it! The mast was finally, and sadly, then replaced with the (current?) metal one which is nothing like as nice.

She was designed I think by David Boyd, and I have her lines at Gannets somewhere. I don’t want to part with them as I have many very happy memories of Greylag, but I could let someone take a copy if I can find them.  Father, in his old age, always said that she was some sort of Clyde area Class boat, but I think it is more likely that by this he meant that she was not specifically designed for him (as Lone Fox was by Robert Clarke) but probably came from one of David’s portfolio of previous designs. I have never seen another exactly like her anywhere on the West Coast so I think this must be true – although I could be wrong. I think she was probably built at Robertsons Yard at Sandbank where Lone Fox was built. For the past few years she has been lying to a swinging mooring at Crinan.

Greylag – Certificate of British Registry

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More information can be found here: