Comments about this page

Great stuff and just the sort of thing that I come to this site to see. Thanks for sharing them with us.
I've started a thread on the sister site's forum in case anyone has any more.

By Ralph
On 19/04/2008

Thanks Ralph - I have added your link to the Page

By David Bullock
On 20/04/2008


I worked at Prouts in the late 50s early 60s. I believe the large catamaran with Ian Hawks by it is the MK1 Snowgoose [wooden] which I worked on. In the last photo the chap in the front row centre with the jumper is Trevor Bloxham. His dad worked there at the same time. The chap in the front row right with the specs is Mr Vincent [can't remember his first name] who ran the varnish shop.

Other names I recall - Paul Haylock, cold moulding supervisor [cigs 3d each]. Dave Poole - folding boats, still on Canvey. Lawrence Unstead. Derek Gully. The McKenna bros.

Re houseboats in Smallgains creek, we used to play on the abandoned ones but some were still lived in up to the mid 60s.

I was quite sweet on one of the inhabitants - Carol Hayward and went to school with her.

By Sparrow via the Forum [David Bullock]
On 26/04/2008

The lady in the background between Erica and Francis Prout is Joan Watkins who later married David Souster (Far right on the pic) they had 2 children Judith and Jimmy and lived in a bungalow Furtherwick Avenue next door to Johnny Fisk's large house.

David worked in Barclays Bank on Canvey in the Long Road branch. His father was Clifford Souster the manager of the main Barclays branch, Cliff died in 1955 leaving a wife Enid who then moved to St Marys in Long Road.

During the floods of '53 the Souster family lived over the top of the Barclays branch and there was a story and picture of Meriel Souster taking her dog for a walk in the National Newspapers. Joan Souster (nee Watkins) owned a wool shop on Canvey and was a local JP.

Meriel was my Mum, David and Joan my Uncle and Aunt, Clifford my grandad and Enid (Nuds) was my grandmother. In 1961 my family returned to Canvey for a couple of years. I then went to school with Judith, my cousin, at the convent.

By Jerry Davis
On 07/10/2008

I worked at Prouts from 1955 until 1970 and was involved in all the boats produced in that time, I also lived on a houseboat in small gains creek from 1947 until 1959, Ian Hawks is a very good friend of mine and we met recently the first time for nearly 30 years.

By Mike Brown
On 14/07/2009

I am trying to find information about my Swift Catamaran built by G. Prout & Sons probably about 1962 Sail Nr. 241. I would like to restore it to its former glory, so any info or plans would be useful. Can anyone help?

By Roy jeffery
On 29/07/2009

Will have a word with Francis Prout to see if we can locate plans for the Swift. Will have a look at my collection of photos to see if there are any of a Swift that could help. Good luck with the restoration.
Ian {01268754036}

By Ian Hawks
On 02/08/2009

Many thanks, any info you can dig up will be much appreciated. My Swift has traveled a long way since it was built, it is now in Germany near the Austrian border.

By Roy Jeffery
On 06/08/2009

So far have been unable to locate any SWIFTY plans, sorry.

By ian hawks
On 07/09/2009

i am trying to get proof of the original price of my prout quasar 50 built in 1981 can anyone help me please?

By danny taylor
On 29/09/2009

My uncle Ted White who lived in Ealing with his wife and three sons had a Prout sailing dinghy which he used to sail from the London Aprentice at Isleworth. I only ever saw it once and then in its assembled state. Does anyone have a constructional drawing of it, I would love to build one. Uncle Ted was quite happy to go to sea in it and be some distance from shore.

By Ken Hogg
On 29/12/2009

I have lots of pictures of a Swift being built, and probably have the plans too. Roy, if you read this and are still interested, leave me a note here and I'll get in touch.

By Dan Levin
On 28/04/2010

Hello Dan, yes I am still interested so please get in touch.

By Roy Jeffery
On 02/06/2010

We have a Prout folding sailing dinghy (red hull) looking for a good home. Last sailed late 70s, early 80s I would think, but in good condition and well-stored. Put together last year on lawn, complete with sail, and nothing fell apart! Even the canvas 'foredeck' is OK!

By Sheila
On 08/10/2010

Sheila I expect your dinghy has found a good home by now, but if not, I would love to provide one. Richard Elkan

By Richard Elkan
On 24/04/2011

Hi I had a Prouts red folding dinghy and when I worked at Prouts I converted it from rowing to sailing. I made all the rigging and spars and Ian Hawks had the sails made. Wonder if its the same one? Regards Sparrow

By sparrow
On 25/04/2011

Hi Ian. Hope all is well with you and your family. I live in Tenerife and have done for the last 16 Years.i have a 6 metre day boat plus a Spanish licence. Take care all the best from Laurie.

By Laurence unstead
On 17/01/2013

Was pleased to see your comments,I certainly remember you from the happy Prout days. Hope you have browsed the Canvey archive pages and seen the many photos that I have put on them. Regards Ian

By Ian hawks
On 17/01/2013

I am trying to trace any details of a boat, I presume, called MARIA JANE, I have a name plate from it that states that it was built by J E Brinkman & L D Unstead, Canvey Island 1965/1968. Would this be the previous contributor by any chance ? Would be please to hear of any details.

By Robin Brown
On 06/01/2014

hi and thanks for reading my post. I'm looking for some family members, but not sure of the names? I was told they worked there back in 1974? but not sure, the names are Ray/Raymond peters,ray Young, Ray Carter, Derek halcox, if you can help please let me know, many thanks tony...

By Tony
On 13/05/2015

Hi Robin Brown. I built Maria Jane with John Brinkman. I still have a picture of the launching by the side of Dauntless Slipway in Benfleet Creek...If you need any more info contact me...

L.D. Unstead.

By laurence unstead
On 31/07/2018

Finally, in the Canoe Club picture I see the two Vandersteen sisters, Sheila and Jean....exactly as I remember them from the late 40’s to early 50’s, classy, intelligent girls.

By Gerald Hudson
On 05/08/2018

I believe the Carnival Queen in the 4th picture down is Pam Tipthorp

By michael swanson
On 08/08/2018

Hi Laurence Unstead, I have just read you message and it was great to find out about this boat. From the quality and size of the name plate it must have been quite some boat. It would be great to see a picture and know of any trips this boat did. Thanks for the reply Robin 

By Robin Brown
On 02/03/2019

Hi Robin..If you would like to contact me on messenger I will send you a picture of Maria Jane ans any other info...Laurie.

By Laurence unstead
On 03/06/2019