Boating royalty on display at UF50 celebrations

In her heyday she was probably one of the most photographed boats in the world, though good looking as she is, it was her skipper who was the centre of attention. Coweslip, the Flying Fifteen owned by His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, was sailed regularly in Cowes Week by The Prince and Uffa Fox.

Coweslip is to return to her original home, Commodores House on the Cowes waterfront, for a few days in August during the Uffa Fox 50 Celebration regatta organised by the Royal London Yacht Club. Coweslip is being lent by Her Majesty The Queen from the Royal Collection. The loan has been arranged with the Classic Boat Museum and the current owner of Commodores House, John Terry, who is making the dock available.

Coweslip is Flying Fifteen number 192, and was a wedding present from the people of Cowes to the then Princess Elizabeth and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, RN.  The class is one of Uffa’s most enduring and internationally sailed designs, with over 4,000 having been built, and new boats being launched every year.

Coweslip was first sailed by her royal owner in the Grand Harbour, Malta, following her delivery there in December 1949 on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier HMS Glory. Prince Philip was stationed with the Royal Navy at Malta between 1949 and 1951. Coweslip subsequently sailed regularly in Cowes Week from 1951.

She was also used frequently when both Prince Charles and Princess Anne were growing up and learning to sail, during holidays in Scotland as well as in the Solent.  With her bulb keel being simple to detach, at 20 ft. Coweslip was just small enough to be transported on the roof of Uffa’s big Packard car, and Uffa took her to several regattas around the coast to race her successfully on The Prince’s behalf.

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