Welcome to Port-Rhu

 

Germaine entering the Chenal du Four, homeward bound from Falmouth -  June 17 2014

Wind ESE 5/6 Beaufort, speed between 8.5 and 9 knots

Photo Copyright Patrick Bigand

Link to French pages

 

Updates:

June 27 2014: Germaine getting ready for the season, first races 150 Miles of Sainte Marine, Falmouth Classics, spectacular video shot in the chenal du Four between Brest and Ushant

Nana at the San Francisco Museum of Fine Arts and Peabody Museum in Salem for the "Impressionnists on the water" exhibition

November 21 2013:

- Germaine is born again, launched May 28, and sailed from Lowestoft to Douarnenez from September 5 to September 15

- Nana and Sousou have left the San Francisco Fine Arts Museum. The "Impressionnists on the water" exhibition has moved to the Peabody Museum in Salem in October. They'll return home in February 2014. If you were to go and visit them, don't forget to send me a picture!

- A design for a fly tying chest I created when I lived in Portland, OR. Complete with the construction plan.

 

 

Welcome to my site!

My name is Patrick Bigand. I was born in Quimper, Brittany, not far from the sea. On the Breton side my family were not seagoing folks, they were farmers in a small place inland called Lennon. The name became famous some time after I was born. I have travelled extensively during my life, and lived in Galway, Oxford, and most recently in Portland Oregon.

I have now left the hi tech industry and spend my time between the Paris area, and Douarnenez in Brittany where I have a house on the old harbour, the "Port-Rhu", which means the "red harbor" in Breton. Why it got that name is hotly debated between historians. Place names in Douarnenez can be even weirder, I own a small storage place near the harbor at "place de l'Enfer", Hell's square. Beat that!

I started to sail when I was a kid, and my first wages were invested into a 16 ft dinghy, a "Caneton", a popular series in France at the time. Over the years, I started gathering and restoring old boats, starting with a 1928 day racer, a 12m2, my first restoration. I eventually bought the house in Douarnenez to house my 20+ boats, many of them rowing boats, from the late 19th and early 20th century. Among them Nymph, a Burgoyne Thames gig from 1901, and Goon, a French double gig built by Tellier around 1880, and Fanny, a single built in 1913 by Deperdussin, the maker of the famous Spad warplane. Goon and Fanny are listed as national heritage in France. I have a couple of bigger boats too, the international 5 Metres Hobby III, and Germaine, a gaff yawl built in 1882 in Gosport by Ben Nicholson. Germaine is now berthed in the Port-Rhu, close to my Douarnenez home, after her launch in May 2013 and her passage from Lowestoft to Douarnenez in September 2013.

Let me conclude with Classic Yacht's summary of what I am all about: "Frenchman Bigand appears to make a habit of rescuing clapped out but interesting boats". (Classic Boat no 116 February 1998)

Patrick

 

 

Content of English language pages:

* History and restoration of  Germaine 1882 yawl by Ben Nicholson

* Spiky memories: diving for sea urchins around Galway Bay in the mid 70's.

* The ultimate fly tying chest/workstation: I am proud to share a design I created and built. It has done the job for me for over 10 years. Some woodworking skills required.

 

Background: a summer morning at the Port-Rhu.

 

Pictures and text copyright Patrick Bigand unless otherwise stated no unauthorized commercial use or reproduction

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My email: patrick4port-rhu.com

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