The City of Flensburg, an ancient but lively seafaring and merchant town, is located in Northern Germany next to the Danish border. It also is the home town of Robbe & Berking Classics boat yard. Founded in 2008, the company is not only dedicated to the restoration of classic sailing yachts but also specializes in building new wooden boats of classical design according to construction plans of former and contemporary yacht designers and boat builders.
It was a special moment in yachting history at R&B’s boatyard when the first newly built wooden 12-meter yacht in more than 50 years was launched for the first time. It bears the design number 434 of the famous Norwegian designer Johan Anker, dating from the year 1939. It was his last 12-meter and his second-to-last design overall. His final design was an 8-meter. World War II and Anker’s death, in 1940 due to illness, prevented these two boats from being built – until today.
The new 12-meter features a beautifully varnished mahogany hull, a teak deck and a wooden mast. With no engine and only the barest interior, this is a pure racing yacht from the 1930s. It has alternating ribs of stainless steel and ash wood and the lead keel alone weighs in at 17 tons. Johan Anker was known as “the master of the lines” and was remarkably successful, not only as a designer, but also as an active racing helmsman himself. His boats, especially his meter-class designs, were known for being particularly fast. Design 434 is the last of twenty 12-meters he designed during his career and all of his experience, as well as boatbuilding knowledge, went into this boat.
This proud yacht was christened during the Robbe & Berking 12-Meter Open European Championship in 2015 when 14 classic 12-meters gathered on the Flensburg Fjord. It was one of the largest fleets in this class’s history.
In 2019, the 12-meter yacht Jenetta followed. She was designed in 1939 by the Scottish naval architect Alfred Mylne. She is not only one of the most beautiful, but with a length over all of 21.78 meters, also one of the longest 12mR yachts.
Her first life ended on the bottom of Lake Pitt not far from Vancouver in Canada, during a storm 10 years ago. After salvaging the wreck and organizing its transport to Flensburg, and then more than 20,000 working hours at the yard Jenetta was launched again on 25 May 2019 for a northern European syndicate. Her second life began exactly 80 years and 8 days after her first launch on 17 May 1939.
It is sad that Alfred Mylne, who died in 1951, could not see what happened on that weekend. To honour him and to the great pleasure of Mylne Yacht Design and the Mylne family, the owners decided to veil the yacht with a tartan for the first summers.
Mr. Oliver Berking, is a member of Norddeutscher Regatta Verein in Hamburg, Germancy, as well as of the Flensburger Segel-Club. His yard builds, repairs and restores classic wooden yachts of any type and size and offers winter storage facilities at their yard for eleven 12-meter yachts, three of which were also built there.
The Robbe & Berking Classics boat yard is truly keeping the 12m legend alive!
The yard employs around 25 skilled people of all trades capable of performing the most demanding jobs and applications, not just on 12-meter yachts, but also for smaller wooden sailing yachts and wooden motorboats.
This new wooden 9-meter motorboat was built in the style of the US East Coast commuter yachts in use during the 1920s and ‘30s and was launched at Robbe & Berking in the summer of 2011. It was built in collaboration with yacht designer Kay-Enno Brink as number one of a planned series of new commuter yachts just like her ancestors on the Hudson River in New York and on Long Island Sound, which were used to transport their wealthy owners from summer homes to their offices in New York City.
The boat was originally meant to be sold, but now serves as a supporting tender during 12-meter yacht regattas.
For more information about Robbe & Berking Classics boat yard please visit their website www.classic-yachts.com or contact Mr. Oliver Berking at +49-461 – 31 80 30 60 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.