March 2010
Coastal Motorboat Heritage Trust has been asked once again to provide crew to participate in the casting of the remains into the deep. On 6th March 2010, HSL 102 will leave from Gun Wharf Quays Portsmouth at 11oclock and proceed out into the English channel. A Service will be held on board.  

Restoration of HSL 102


CMHT were asked by Mr. P. Clabburn to crew RAF 206 (the RAF Craft associated with T.E.Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia). The vessel to provide facilities fo the Film Crew for high speed filming of the Star of the film, HSL 102. We left Buckler's Hard at dawn stopped off at Cowes for fuelling, thence to Gun Wharf Quays at Portsmouth to meet up with the film crew.

We moored in front of the Star and swapped boats taking her to sea with the film makers to put her through an hour of manoeuvres at full speed, we were then joined by the other craft when a further two hours were spent flying around the Solent at break-neck speed.

The film crew were a charming bunch, none more so than there Narrator, who turned out to be the Star of the TV series Red Dwarf.

HSL 102 and RAF 206 will provide the viewer with an historical perspective on the change of design to powerboats before the second world war and the large part played in it by these two craft. It has been said that all modern powerboat, even the plastic variety seen throughout the world, owe their shape, their speed and their stability, to these boats.

The film to be shown in mid February 2010.


HSL 102 was designed by Fred Cooper, who also designed Sir Macolm Campbell's Bluebirds.
A total of 22 of this model Air Sea Rescue Craft were built, '102' is the only one remaining.
She was built by British Powerboat Company in 1936 and entered service with the RAF in 1937.
During the war more than 12,000 air crew were pulled from the water by rescue craft.

After a daring rescue in 1941 in which both British and German pilots were rescued, the vessel had a visit from the King and Queen who thanked the crew fo their brave service to the nation. Fifty five years later that same Queen, Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, Relaunched the boat after total restoration had been complete.  ( on her way to the car that Great Lady spotted Mr and Mrs Tagg in the crowd, she walked to them and listened patiently to Mr Tagg's few words telling of his conection to these vessels, Her Majesty shook his hand and quietly thanked him for his srvice to his country)

The craft built of Honduras Mahogany, double diagonal construction Length 64ft,  Beam 14ft,  Draught 3ft 6ins.
Engines 3 X 500hp  Napier Sea Lion.
Speed at Full Power 40 knots (45 mph)