Type: Naval Pinnace
Draft: 2ft 6ins
Displacement: Not known
Engine: BMC 3.8L Diesel
Construction: Double-skinned teak
Builder: The Admiralty
Many of the Dunkirk Little Ships came from the Thames which was then alive with well-found cruising boats built only just before the war and ideal for the task. The Thames is still where some of the 'lost' Dunkirk ships are to be found, often by a member of the Association with an eye for a boat from the thirties. The Association's Archivist then gets to work looking into their records, registration forms and the Dunkirk documents in his collection. Some-times, the details which emerge are heroic, often amusing and, on occasion, even a little scandalous!
Deenar started life as a Naval steam pinnace in 1917 and served valiantly at Dunkirk. When her post-war owner moved to South Africa, she was bought by a confirmed bachelor, M. Russell-Snook who enjoyed recalling the wild parties on board with girls whose names sometimes hit the headlines in the less salubrious Sunday papers. He felt that the pictures taken on board in those days would not be fitting for a serious website like this!
When Mr. Russell-Snook moved to Cornwall, the glitter went out of Deenar's life and she was left on the River Thames at Weybridge Marina gradually deteriorating and filling with water until boat yard owner Terry Tappin hauled her out on to the bank. In 1984, David and Andrew Smith took pity on her and have since been trying to put her to rights. They have renewed her decks, her wheelhouse and her cabins in the style of the 1920s when she was recognised as a Dunkirk Little Ship.
Updated with information provided for the 2017 Spring edition of 'ADLS. Fleet News'.
Paul Weaver (and son ) have been restoring Deenar in their barn. Completed by late Spring, including the construction of a new rear cabin, she was relaunched in time for her re-appearance at the 2017 Henley Traditional Boat Festival.