Introducing a new trustee - Bob Parker

EAST welcomes our newest trustee - Bob has providied a brief summary of his background.

Having a distant relative who was a shipwright and local undertaker which was later formed into G W Parker Boat Builders of Boston it would follow that I would take up boating at an early age of 6.

The first boat I had was a cold molded Gunter Rigged 12” dingy, this being a fore runner in construction terms to the early constructed 505 international dinghy’s that made G W Parker & Sons a world class builder of this type of high performance boat. It was therefore natural that this was the boat that taught me so much about sailing and I campaigned Internationally about 8 of these boats with Dick Parker as crew most of the time. Of course G W Parker went on to make and design the “Lift Keel” yachts, Squibs which EAST possible have and a number of other boats.

It was 505 sailing that bought me to Felixstowe in 1973 as Felixstowe Ferry Sailing club had the largest fleet in the UK and that was were the competitive sailing was to be had. This was a big move as I was living in London and needed a new job and joined a company called Smith Cases Ltd a manufacturer of specialist packaging a cases for most types of applications, our biggest market at the time being Antistatic resistant boxes for the electronics markets with BT being one of our largest customers. I became Chairman some years later and after we sold out in 2003 as I was also a major shareholder in a medical device company I concentrated my energies into that which I have enjoyed for the last 15 years or so. Both these assignments have been challenging as they both have involved the design of a solution to a specific set of problems.

I have lived in the area at Kirton for the best part of my life, married with 2 sons and a daughter and have for the last 20 years owned a number of yachts, the last being a Halberg Rassy 352. After having sight problems with my left eye I decided to, as they say turn to the “Dark Side” by selling my Halberg and getting an Aquastar 38 power boat called Moon Boom. This will never compare to sailing but keeps me on the water but has opened up some new and interesting sides to boating. This has taught me that as you loose abilities you have to adapt and get on with things. I hope that I can use my lifetime experiences to further the ambitions and ethos of EAST.