If anyone in the world can afford to have a massive luxurious megayacht, it must be musician, ex Beatle and song writing legend Paul McCartney. But guess what, he doesn’t have a boat because he recently sold it, and even then it was an old refitted trawler named Barnaby Rudge.
As many will know, Barnaby Rudge was a character in Victorian author Charles Dicken’s novel of the same name, which is very appropriate as the trawler was one of a number of ‘Dickens Class’ vessels used by the British Army. McCartney bought the boat in 1987 and spent much of the time aboard with his late wife, Linda, who died from cancer in 1998.
According to Britain’s Sunday Express newspaper, McCartney made the decision to sell the vessel after meeting with their children Stella, Heather and Mary. “He has decided to make the break with the past and move on,” family friend Eric Green was quoted as saying. “Paul no longer uses the boat because it has memories he does not want to dwell on because of the cruel way Linda was taken from him.”
The Rudge was designed by Groves & Gutteridge of Cowes, Isle of Wight and built in April 1946 by the British Power Boat Company based in Hythe. She was listed for sale by the Essex Boatyards, for a lowly reported sum of £60,000, or about $101,000 in U.S. dollars. Proceeds from the sale were to be donated to the Oxfam charity.
The old trawler is deep drafted, ruggedly built and powered by twin diesels. The vessel has a seaworthy appearance, but according to one old soldier, boats of the Dickens Class quickly become uncomfortable in seas.
“They were great boats but were known to ‘roll on a damp lawn.’ I had one in my troop in 1968, and left my breakfast in the Solent more than once,” he reportedly said. The main saloon consists of a port side dining area with seating for six around a mahogany table with lockers under the seating. Starboard side has upholstered seating with lockers under. Forward cabin has four single berths, ample stowage and an en-suite head.
The aft cabin is the master with large double bunk and a second en-suite head. The woodwork is mahogany throughout with teak cabin soles and decks. Barnaby Rudge was apparently purchased by a Mr Adrian Pegler who says he paid a sum over and above the original asking price, due to the yacht’s history of illustrious ownership. Mr Pegler says that he intends to keep the boat’s character very much as it was when McCartney owned it.