At Fairlie, we pride ourselves on our passion, craftmanship and professional approach to our work.
Our Background: Duncan Walker
"Following an engineering degree I ran away to sea and quickly graduated to classics, that was it, I was hooked - the motion of the sea, the sound of sea, the beautiful shape of her, the feel of the varnished wood, the superb attention to design detail wormed its way into my spirit and became part of my DNA. The last thirty years have been so rewarding as I have been constantly indulging my passion for these beautiful yachts coupled with my experience as an engineer.
Following fifteen years of restoration work my thoughts turned to making these beautiful yachts more accessible. Our modern classics combine the best of both, a classic elegant shape above the water combined with a faster and more weatherly underwater shape, modern timber construction and better finishes.
My small team, most of whom have worked with me already are passionate about working with wood to build the highest quality and fast seaworthy yachts."
Our core value is to work with a client to give the best unbiased advice. Based on our love and experience we will build them a beautiful elegant and safe modern classic yacht.
During the last 25 years Fairlie has employed many shipwrights, engineers, joiners and painters from apprentices to master craftsmen. The right choice of people, selecting on skill, experience and temperament for any project can easily be done in the Southampton area where the traditions of a century of yacht building skills exist.
Fairlie have worked away from their base in Hamble many times, whether repairing collision damage in the south of France for a week or supplying a team to Hamburg for a year. Now acting as a 'pop up’ boatyard Fairlie can mobilise a container full of tools and a team at short notice. At our Port Hamble base a 300sqm, fully equipped workshop can be erected as required.
Fifty years ago working on, repairing and building wooden yachts was the norm. Today the majority of yachts are built from exotic materials, leaving a huge lack of experience in working with tradi-tional yachts, where epoxy is not the best answer. Fairlie do all they can to support the training schools by employing youngsters undergoing formal apprentice schemes
After 25 year’s experience our founder and managing director Duncan is constantly on the move around Europe, and even further afield working with potential owners looking to own a classic yacht, helping to provide solutions to structural problems, advising on repair and maintenance work, and occasionally acting for insurers and classification societies. Duncan's long experience in classic projects is available for project planning and management.
Fairlie are the guardians of the Fife Archive which contains designs of over 500 yachts from 1882 to 1940. There is a large collection of drawings for un-built yachts of various sizes. It is estimated that over a third of these yachts still exist.