Designer: Cecil Boden

Cecil Boden was one of Australia’s first Australian born Naval Architects and practiced in Sydney from the 1920s until the late 1980s. For some of this period he was a senior Naval Architect at Cockatoo Island and during the war he worked at the Green Point shipbuilding facility at Mortlake Sydney.

Cecil Boden began his working life as a boiler maker, then he worked in the drawing office at Cockatoo Island, doing steel design. He did a degree in mechanical engineering in Sydney, and in the early 1930s went to England to study naval architecture. He may be the first Australian born person to qualify in this subject, as there is uncertainty surround AC Barber’s actaul qualifications from a few years earlier. Previous NA’s such as Reeks and Carment ( all based in Sydney) were Scottish/English naval architects who emigrated to Australia..

Cecil returned to Australia and established his own, not very successful, business in Martin Place. During the 2nd World War he worked at Green Point where many naval and army vessels were built.

After the war, he was involved in commercial work, putting craft into survey. During the late 1950s he is believed to have been the senior NA at Cockatoo Island. He had a good eye for lines, but was not trained for yacht design, and worked mostly on steel commercial craft. Boden did a lot of design work on trawlers and steel vessels, and was renowned for developing very efficient boats. He also designed cranes and barges.

He was an early designer of stock plans for yachts and launches and published a small book of plans and advice. At various times he employed younger naval architects who went on to establish their own practices and became well known in the 1960s and 1970s. On of these is believed to be Colin McAlpine, who is the technical representative on the America’s Cup Committee. Boden was an official yacht measurer.

Information courtesy of the Australian Register of Historic Vessels

Boat List: