Mistral II is a 1922 classic yacht designed by John Alden in the US as design 145. She was built by Wattie Ford jr in Sydney. She 63 ft plus bowsprit and bumpkin by 15 ft and displaces just over 36 tons. Mistral II is being gifted by Barbra Burton to the Windeward Bound charitable trust in Hobart where restoration will be a job training and readiness for employment program. The State of Tasmania has indicated support for this program and an application for grant funding under the Tasmanian Government Work Pathways program has been approved. A commitment to cover the restoration costs of Mistral II has also been made by a Tasmanian benefactor. Captain Sarah Parry will provide supervision of the project and of the sail training program that the restored vessel will provide.
The core workpiece of the project is the 64 ft (22 metre) gaff rigged schooner Mistral 11. This vessel was in the process of being restored by her owner, and had reached the stage of having her entire interior 1960s ‘modernized’ fitout removed, her deck removed and relaid in marine ply, and some remedial work done to some of her frame heads where years of freshwater degradation had damaged the top foot or so of some 20 of her 70 frames. Her hull is sheathed in copper.
She is built of sawn, ‘sistered’ hardwood frames, planked throughout in New Zealand Kauri, and was decked in Teak. She is basically sound, is afloat and is making no water. Her rudder is degraded but the bronze metalwork is intact and a new rudder will be easy to craft. All her fastenings and bolts, keel bolts etc, including all her rudder fittings are Tobin Bronze, and while she has been stripped down, all her fittings come with her and are all re-usable. She also comes with 3 and half packs of new Burma Teak, (imported many years ago by her former owner), one pack of which has been milled to the correct size of her deck timbers, and will be used for that purpose. She comes with her original construction plans and much other documentation. Although built in Sydney, she was (and is) registered on the British Register but in Hobart. She was one of the 9 yachts to participate in the first Sydney – Hobart race in 1945, and competed in 4 others.
When completed and in survey, she will be used by WBT for advanced sail training and other purposes as required. She is a very important piece of Australia’s Maritime History, totally worth preserving, and she will live on for many years to come. In her present state, she is an ideal training platform totally different in both presence and practicality from any normal shed based activity.
Apart from any necessary out of water work, all remedial and restorative work will be able to be undertaken with the vessel afloat. It is intended she be berthed in front of Windeward Bound on Elizabeth Street Pier.