Ben Sutcliffe Marine Surveyor - England & Wales

Marine Surveyor Ben Sutcliffe

Accredited Member of YDSA

Ben Sutcliffe-Davies was born in to the Marine industry, like so many of his family. His Uncle was a yacht designer & Yard Manager along with his Father who was a keen sailor and boat builder from Leigh on Sea in Essex. When the Family moved to Felixstowe both Ben and his older brother Alan could be found in the local boat yard helping family and friends maintain their craft and going out on the clinker fishing craft that were built in the yard. Even while at school Ben was involved in boat building and helping maintain the schools fleet of craft, his O' level project was building a boat in the school workshops! He was able to enjoy Sailing and was once discovered sailing a 28 foot trapper to Holland at a very young age!

On leaving School Ben like his brother a few years before was lucky to get a placement at the AMGTA Olton Broad & Lowestoft College this was under the renound John Elliott and John "Push Stick" Parker who was one of the last Traditional Boat Builders on the Norfolk Broads to build a Wherry. While at the AMGTA ben worked on the OYC Athurasa 72 Ketch and built Clinker launches for the RNLI. He also was involved in repairs of GRP craft and engine installations etc. He graduated College with his training Indentures and a placement at the then well know yard of Whistocks Boat yard he continued with day release to Lowestoft College and passed the trade exams with Small Craft Design with Distinctions.

Ben worked at Whistocks up until a few months before it closed and worked on a wide variety of craft from Traditional Wood Carvel Clinker to Double diagonal of the RNLI fleet that the yard had the maintenance contracts to. He was also involved in GRP repair work at the yard for customers with in the Marina along with lofting and laminating work using West Epoxy for the Varships ( kits ) that Whistocks developed. Ben also looked after 120 swing moorings on the river. When the yard closed Ben was able to work at Felixstowe College as the RYA Sailing Instructor and was able to carry out repairs and instruct students on maintenance to a fleet of 18 craft.

When the College Closed Ben Set up Anglia Yacht Brokerage at two sites in East Anglia. In the first year he sold over 40 yachts and by the mid 90's Opened second yard for Traditional Boats and specialised in Drascombe and the Cornish Crabber Range with in a few years he was recognised as the leading broker/Specialist for these craft. At his second Yard they provided repairs and small craft Purchase surveys on craft up to 45ft, Condition Reports for rigging, engines etc plus assessing damaged craft for insurance underwriters. He sold the business to Alex Haig who had help Ben develop the company and is still trading.

In 2001 Ben moved to Wales and Continued to be involved with the industry along with giving help, advice and undertaking surveys to buyers, owners and underwriters. In 2004 Ben also started the two Regional Boat shows in Wales with the first South Wales Boat Show opening in 2005 and North Wales Boat Show a few years later.

Ben's passion and depth of knowledge in wood, Steel, alloy and GRP as a boat  builder plus his experience as a Yacht Broker in the past gives him great advantages when surveying craft. Ben is an Accredited Member of the Yacht Designers and Surveyors Association (YDSA). He is also a member of the British Marine Federation. Ben also undertakes MCA coding inspections for the Y.D.S.A. He is always pleased to provide a good service to anyone with a passion for going afloat.

Ben Sutcliffe AssocIIMS See our regular articles in Towpath Talk and Yachting Monthly