A gaff ketch built and sailed by Robert and Susan Hart

In 1974 Robert and Sue Hart began to build their own ferro-cement ketch on the site in Benfleet Creek previously occupied by Underwoods and later by the Benfleet Yacht Club on the Benfleet side of the creek (where the station bus stop is now). By 1976 it was complete, being launched 26th June. They have used it ever since to sail across the world……… a mileage now totalling more than 80,000 miles.

This includes a round the world trip and the Great American Loop, a voyage that joins a stretch of waterways and lakes that links the Atlantic Ocean with the Gulf of Mexico. It turned out to be a voyage with unexpected hazards. They had to dodge mobile homes and marina jetties as flood waters created by a hurricane swept past them. Barbarossa is currently “resting” in Benfleet Creek, moored by barge Gladys.

Barbarossa sailing up Benfleet Creek
Rob and Susan Hart
Barbarossa under sail in Benfleet Creek
Barbarossa under construction
Barbarossa under construction
Barbarossa under construction

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  • Hi Rob and Sue, not seen you for quite a long time, how is the Gardner doing ? Would be good to hear from you
    Tony Lowe

    By Tony Lowe (23/07/2022)
  • Hi Rob and Sue, remember me Roger Shinn nice Gentleman of these here parts?

    By Roger Shinn Dawes Heath Boye (26/12/2020)
  • Hi. Sue & Rob. Just got your christmas card, hoped to find an email address.
    Love to all the family.
    Sam & Shirley. “Priority 1” in Australia

    By Sam & Shirley Chambers (04/12/2020)
  • Greatings to Barbarrossa From SY Jornal – Brazil.

    By Vilmar & Gina Braz (14/07/2017)

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