European Marine Services Ltd / European Marine Surveys – Are delighted to welcome William Kirby as a new Marine Surveying Associate.
William will be undertaking Pre Purchase Surveys on vessels of less than 50’ and focusing principally on GRP.
Moving from Bedfordshire at the age of 16, William followed his passion for boats & joined his parents in their new family venture of Freshwater Cruisers based in Brundall. Norfolk
Broadening his horizons, in 1999, William trained at Berkshire College to become a Boat Safety Scheme Examiner. He is also qualified as a Gas Safe Engineer carrying out LPG soundness testing, servicing & installations.
The small hire fleet soon developed into a larger scale business incorporating Marine Engineering, Boat Maintenance & General Repairs. This built up a good customer base & reputation for quality workmanship across the Norfolk Broads.
In 2014, some 21 years later it was time for his parents to retire, thus launching the beginning of William setting up on his own as Freshwater Marine focusing on Boat Safety Scheme Inspections & utilising his long established name within the Marine Industry to go forward.
In his spare time he volunteers with The Raptor Trust, rescuing & rehabilitating wild injured birds of prey as well as having his own Hawks which he flies during the winter months. He also enjoys attending motorsport events throughout the summer.
For more information contact European Marine Services Ltd. Marine Surveyors & Consultants
Tel : 01603 327 123 www.europeanmarinesurveys.com
A day in the life of ………. John Clabburn: Qualified Marine Surveyor & Expert Witness
Reprinted from Yacht Brokers Designers & Surveyors Association (YBDSA) December 2014 Newsletter
Q: First of all, please tell us about your company and your current role
European Marine Services Ltd (inc European Marine Surveys) was incorporated in 2006, previously trading as John E Clabburn & Associates Marine Surveyors.
We are qualified marine architects & surveyors and undertake marine surveys – all types including the popular pre-purchase survey – covering GRP, wood & steel. Other services include Expert Witness CPR 35 compliant / Expert Determination & ADR Dispute Resolution & Mediation plus general consultancy.
In support of European clients we have in house multi-lingual services to include French, Spanish, Italian & Greek, however all reports are in English
European Marine Services is a small marine business based in Norwich ideally situated in the heart of the Norfolk Broads with quick access to the East Coast. Working with self-employed Associates undertaking leisure boat surveys (< 150’) throughout the UK and more and more in Europe. We no longer undertake design work but having a background in marine architecture / design is a very big bonus and of significant advantage for marine surveying and expert witness / dispute work
Having a general interest in marine law plus some legal training several years ago and more recently with The Academy of Experts based at Grays Inn London, I undertake all our Expert Witness and Dispute Resolution work, being an expanding side of the business
Q: What does your typical day entail ?
Like all of us the day starts dealing with emails and catching up with general correspondence plus completing reports (time consuming) which job I find less exciting than being out meeting clients, discussing their problems and issues and offering advice.
We phone boatyards, brokers and clients to finalise survey arrangements and to make sure nothing falls between the cracks. For example this week we have arranged surveys in Palma and La Rochelle, fortunately for me Louis Bodmer (surveyor) a colleague who speaks both languages fluently
Looking for a moment at Expert Witness and Dispute Resolution enquiries, these are received either from the client direct or from their legal representative. I am appointed to act in the capacity of a SJE Single Joint expert where I act on behalf of both parties or as a PAE Party Appointed Expert representing a single party. In both instances my duty is to the court
This Expert Witness / Dispute side of the business takes much more time with most instructions taking on average of between six and twelve months to finalise. At any moment in time we have probably two or three instructions on going
Most enquiries being received through our website (www.europeanmarinesurveys.com) and from client and broker recommendation
Insurance Survey of Wood Ketch in France
Q: How did you get started in your career ?
Back in the 1960s I started work as a boatbuilding apprentice in Woodbridge Suffolk building wood sailing ketches. My first job being steaming planks to shape standing in the snow beside a large wood fired steamer, followed by ‘cutting out’ a rabbit line in a vessels 50’ hog with a carpenter’s adze.
After several years (and other boat yards) I completed my five year apprenticeship as a boat builder and ended up at Vosper Thornycroft, Shipyard Portsmouth as a Student Apprentice Naval Architect and undergoing training in every department, building naval warships with sponsorship for University.
Fast forward and I have now worked in the marine industry for well over forty years. I have held senior management positions in high unit value production and marine engineering management for fourteen years. International sales and marketing for nine years, covering leisure, commercial, high speed and paramilitary craft of all types up to approximately 45m. I was a senior marine manager with MAN B&W Ltd with responsibility for international sales of high speed marine diesel engine and propulsion systems.
In 2006 I was fortunate enough to be proposed for membership of The Academy of Experts by a previous Academy Chairman and well known Arbitrator.
To become – Expert Witness CPR Part 35 compliant (Civil Procedure Rules) I have undertaken the following Expert Witness training modules
Legal Framework Law & Procedure Procedure Rules
Role & Responsibilities of the Expert. Expert Determination The Experts Report
In 2007 I joined the Register of Qualified Mediators / Faculty of Mediation & ADR
Q: What do you enjoy most about your work ?
I get the biggest thrill and sense of satisfaction when clients whom we represent are successful in their claim or dispute.
To give some examples as to the interesting scope and variety of Expert Witness / Dispute Instructions undertaken
Expert Witness ……………………..
Evidence in Coroners Court Accidental death
Evidence in Court HMRC Vat Disputes
Evidence in Court Navigation & Speeding
Construction Disputes in UK, Spain, Croatia & France
Valuations for Probate Purposes and Matrimonial Disputes
Insurance Claims / Loss Adjuster
Expert Determination Valuation of small ferries
Personal Injury Claims
Damage Inspections & Disputes
Expert Evidence on behalf of marine surveyors
Q: What advice would you offer to someone considering your career path ?
Think long and hard and get the right training as there are no shortcuts to becoming a marine surveyor and it takes much longer than you think to build up a successful business. With current consumer legislation clients know their rights and are very quick to apportion blame when things go wrong (compensation culture) We know all too well as we have worked with both sides and have equally represented surveyors with a problem.
You cannot become an Expert Witness until you first become an ‘Expert’
A Definition of an Expert: ” An honest trustworthy authority being someone who’s already made most of the mistakes in that area “.
Q: What was your first job ?
Working as a boatbuilding apprentice for Whistocks Boatyard in Woodbridge Suffolk. This was hard work building large wooden ketches by hand, steaming planks in the open air and working with hand tools such as adze. Being in the days when boatsheds were open to all weathers with minimal heating and moving heavy boats around on greasy ways.
Q: What is your favourite motto or saying ?
The easiest way to make money is to stop losing it
Q: The Way Forward
The YBDSA is a great authority for the industry and continues to maintain high standards
However, we come across young surveyors (recently qualified) who have paid very high tuition fees to a training college and then told to go out and earn a living, yet their practical knowledge (which takes many industry years) is regretfully non-existent, consequently life as a successful surveyor is a struggle.
If marine industry apprenticeships were to come back (most unlikely) this would be an excellent foundation to a subsequent career as a marine surveyor
John E. Clabburn, MIIMS, C.Eng, Dipl.Na, AFA, QDR
Chartered Engineer & Marine Surveyor
On going training for European Marine Surveyors – We do not stand still
Training in wood boat construction
I am Louis Bodmer a small boat surveyor with European Marine Services Ltd and very happy to announce I have completed my course in wooden boatbuilding and restoration at the International Boatbuilding Training College (IBTC) in Lowestoft.
The college is renown for its outstanding facilities and approach to tuition.
The course consist of 47 weeks and is divided with the first 12 weeks in a joinery course where a highly experienced joiner has lead us to feel confident and skilled enough to take on any joinery work in a boat.
Following this first 12 week period, we were thrown straight into a fully functional boatyard. With over twenty boat projects on the go and extensive facilities availabling include modern machinery along with a Woodmiser in the timber yard, we were able to work with and build any / all components required for the restoration of wooden vessel or new builds.
Well not quite! We still needed good instructors and clear instructions! And both were there ! With three instructors on site and a ratio of 1 to 6 for teaching plus varied short courses covering lofting, engine and boat systems, timber knowledge, rope work, GRP courses and more, we were increasing our knowledge every day
The Lowestoft College is set up as a proper boatyard where owners bring their own boats to be restored. Most of the time the boats are beyond financial / viable restoration from commercial yards and wouldn’t be repaired / rebuilt without considerable investment and would end up being lost. And this is the beauty of it, while keeping the long tradition of wooden boat builder alive we also participate in keeping the maritime heritage of those yachts alive and not part of a bonfire!
The labour and expertise is provided by the students and college and the owners make a contribution towards materials. It might take a bit longer to reach completion but it is a good way to keep every one afloat.
There is a definite joy and pride in the process of building and restoring wooden boats, from practical lofting to picking up the lines for the templates to building the components and enjoying the shape of her coming to life! As well as some less productive day when nothing will fit and the kettle looks more friendly than a curved spoke shave!
When I first join the course, I had in mind it will help in my profession as a surveyor gaining the in-depth knowledge of a boatbuilder and it is certainly paying off ! As a wooden boat is probably the trickiest construction type to survey and now with those skills
Consequently I am more informed and professional when undertaking surveys and able to provide advice based upon training, expertise and background knowledge to EMS clients.
So after those long 47 weeks learning and honing skills, I have now finished with Distinction in the College Diploma and City & Guilds 2463 Level 3.
As a qualified surveyor and part of European Marine Services Ltd (incl. European Marine Surveys) I am based locally in Norfolk, East Anglia and am very happy to meet you when undertaking inspections and surveys plus recommendations regarding your boat
Information: Lowestoft IBTC
For your information Andy the manager would more than happy answering any queries in regard to their courses. Their website address is www.IBTC.co.uk
Please give him a call
For more information contact European Marine Services Ltd (inc European Marine Surveys) Tel : 01603 327 123 www.europeanmarinesurveys.com
Visual Inspection & Verbal report
Thanks very much for your help today, you were extremely thorough and I shall recommend you when either my family or I make another purchase some time in the future!
We bought the boat.
Continuous and Ongoing Skills Improvement – Marine Surveyor Training
Tales from the International Boat Building College (IBTC) at Oulton Broad
Lofting is a drafting technique (sometimes using mathematical tables) whereby curved lines are generated, to be used in plans for streamlined objects such as aircraft and boats. The lines may be drawn on wood and the wood then cut for advanced woodworking. The technique can be as simple as bending a flexible object, such as a long strip of thin wood or thin plastic, so that it passes over three non-linear points and scribing the resultant curved line, or plotting the line using computers or mathematical tables.
Lofting is particularly useful in boat building, when it is used to draw and cut pieces for hulls and keels, which are usually curved, often in three dimensions. It was also commonly used in aircraft design before the widespread adoption of computer-generated shaping programs.
Here I am (Louis Bodmer of European Marine Surveys) applying the art and skills of lofting a boat on real scale and fairing the waterlines in the half-breadth view. It takes a vast floor to do so!
Just a quick example of the skills and knowledge I’ve gained while training at the International Boat Building College (IBTC) on Oulton Broad. My colleague Jacob and I have been lofting an 11ft clinker sailing dinghy.
It has been very interesting seeing some obscure figures in a table of off-set gradually developing into some fair and pleasing lines and becoming a boat which eventually will float!
We are now into the next step and building the first components of the boat as the transom, keel, hog, stem and apron.
More updates to come as the work progresses !
Our marine surveyors ” Seven River Challenge ” Kayak Challenge
Louis Bodmer – European Marine Surveyor
Over the recent Bank Holliday weekend I had the pleasure of taking part in a charity kayaking ‘7 River Challenge’ to raise money for Cystic Fibrosis.
With a group of Norfolk friends we decided to sail the ‘Seven Rivers’ from Norwich to Wroxham in 3 days in Kayaks! All 12 kayaks including a double with trusting dog set off on the River Wensum from Norwich Yacht Station at 8am on Friday morning. Tailed closely by safety boats, we aimed to reach the Berney Arms Pub at the mouth of Breydon water by the early evening. This proved to be a challenging long first day with 7hrs 30minutes of paddling. But thanks to our Navigator, the tide was ebbing in the right direction encouraging us along. A welcomed fresh Pint and a warm fire pleasantly awaited us at the pub.
The following morning had to be an early start to ensure we would have the tide running with us across the large stretch of Breydon water. It was a beautiful still morning welcomed by the early morning call of the Oyster Catcher and wild geese as the sun rose over the misty calm water. The wilderness soon disappeared and the urban landscape and road bridge loomed ahead. As we paddled under the Yarmouth bypass bridge there was the yellow post leading us into the River Bure to what felt like the beginning of the way home. We struggled a bit against the tide as we came towards the yacht station in Great Yarmouth, but we were glad to know a hearty breakfast was awaiting us. Moral was boosted knowing we were aiming for the Lion Inn (not a lie in!) at Thurne for the night.
With our two longest paddling days past, up the Ant we paddled two by two as far as Ludham Bridge. We then turned back towards Wroxham and home, celebrating by 4pm on Sunday. Easily said, but it was a long last leg!
In total we raised over £3000 with approximately 55 miles of paddling!
Thank you all for your support.
European Marine Services Ltd / European Marine Surveys – Are delighted to welcome Louis Bodmer as a new Associate. Louis will be undertaking general marine surveys on vessels up to approx 40′ and encompassing most materials.
Before passing his YachtMaster Offshore at the UKSA on the Isle of Wight in 2001, Louis was working for five years on board charter boats in Greece. With his tickets in hand, Louis then made his way sailing the world as crew and First Mate on privately owned 55ft-137ft Superyachts and Classic yachts. He has now logged up to 64.000 n.m during his professional worldwide sailing activities; sailing several times accross the Atlantic Ocean and skippering on delivery trips and participating in numerous Classic Races in the Mediterranean & Caribbean Seas.
During his fifteen years working at sea, Louis has gained a wide knowledge of boat construction and maintenance. He has also managed several extensive refits based in Italy and Spain, as well as worked in specialised boat yards in the UK. Louis has now decided to move ashore and transfer his skills and knowledge to the surveying field.
Louis Bodmer has completed the Yacht & Small Craft Surveyor’s course at the IIMS.
He has also successfully completed a 2 year full time course in small wood boat construction at the Oulton Broad Training School
Louis has comprehensive PI Insurance with European Marine Services Ltd
For more information contact European Marine Services Ltd (inc European Marine Surveys) Tel : 01603 327 12301603 327 123 www.europeanmarinesurveys.com