It is with great sadness that we report the death of past BISMA Secretary Rees Martin, who died suddenly on Saturday 20th February 2021. Rees was a true bon vivant and a great raconteur with an extraordinary technical knowledge of and love for classic yachts and traditional boat building.
He owned the 1989 Pelle Peterson designed 6 Metre GBR102 “Bear” for many years, racing regularly with the British fleet and taking on the role of BISMA secretary from 2004 to 2010.
During his time as BISMA Secretary, Rees played a key role in helping to tidy up the 6 Metre Class Rule, culminating in the publication of an updated Rule in 2007. That issue was the first to introduce Appendix A to the Rule, which allowed older boats a route to getting a valid certificate. Rees also led the organising team for the 2007 World Championship and was involved in supporting other major UK 6 Metre events including the 2014 European Championship in Falmouth, and he continued to provide advice and support to the class throughout his life.
In recent years Rees had very much enjoyed racing “Alert”, his delightful and beautifully maintained Tumlare which was been built in 1935. He played a key role in creating the popular Cowes Classics Week Regatta and provided advice and support to classic yacht sailors, builders and regatta organisers around the world. He was also Vice Chairman of the Association of Yachting Historians.
Away from sailing Rees had extensive connections in the art world having run a specialist art shipping company for many years. He leaves behind his wife Penelope and son Harry and our thoughts and prayers are with them and his family and friends at this difficult time.
History :May Be IV, S2, was designed by Tore Holm and built built by Abrahamsson & Börjesson in Stockholm of the best materials with no expenses spared for the Six Meter racing legend & innovator, the ship owner Sven Salén. Under his personal sail number S2 Salen had introduced the symmetrical spinnaker as well as the genoa foresail on previous Six Meters he had sailed. May Be IV was built for the 1936 Kiel Olympics in mind, Salén was selected and finished third in the fierce and aggressive pre-war competition.
May Be IV is a representative of the classic six meters at the aesthetic and competitive heyday of the class before the WWII, when the Six Meters were at their leanest. MBIV is 11,62 long and 1,78 m narrow – after her, the minimum width was increased to 1,8m. As they say, she is mean, lean and built like a Stradivarius:) Is Svea, the longest and sleekest J-boat in the history, designed also by Tore Holm in 1937, May Be IV’s big sister or kid sister?