Harry Spencer MBE 1925-2009
Published: Thursday, 11th June 2009
It is with great sadness that one of the Isle of Wight's best loved character and founder of Spencer Rigging and Spencer Thetis Wharf Ltd, passed away peacefully on 21st May 2009.
Harry Spencer lived a very colourful but fascinating life, involved in almost every sector of the marine industry from a pattern maker, yacht hand, yard foreman, delivery skipper, shipwright, sail maker to a world renowned wooden mast maker and rigger. Over the years Harry and his team were responsible for producing the rigs for some of the finest and largest classic yachts in the world from Fifes to Herreshoffs.
It was during the restoration of the 100' Fife 'Mariquita' in 2004 that Collars became connected with Spencer Masts, supplying the spar in conjunction with Harry. Being one of there last major projects he undertook before his retirement, Harry was very keen to see Collars continue on the work he had spent most of his life developing. During a number of meetings he kindly revelled many of his secrets and passed over to us much of his specialised equipment, most of which is used today in every spar we build.
"Harry was an inspiration, making what seemed impossible, possible, and without his help and enthusiasm I'm sure Collars would not be where we are today. He will be greatly missed but his work and memory will live on many years."
He leaves his wife, Ross, two sons, Mark and Rafe, and four grandchildren.