ST 437

Beautifully maintained with her original engines…

Sea Plane Tender 437 was built by the British Powerboat Company in Hythe and launched in July 1941. She was a development of a prototype which had been designed by Hubert Scott Payne of the British Power Boat Company and RAF Aircraftman T.E. Shaw – a pseudonym for the famous Lawrence of Arabia.

Peter O'Toole as Lawrence of Arabia
Peter O'Toole as Lawrence of Arabia

ST437 is twin engined with a hard-chine; a shape which means the boat can operate at sea in any weather conditions and at high speed for rescue work. Like Gay Archer and Humorist, 437 is double diagonal mahogany with a fabric inter-lining beneath the waterline. However, she is waterproofed using a boiled linseed oil and varnish mixture and her sides are only single planking; but still using bronze and copper screws and rivets.


Apart from being upholstered to make her comfier, ST437 retains her original lay out and her original Perkins S6M diesel engines, which allowed her to reach 26 knots while in service.



ST437 entered service with the RAF in November 1941 to A/SR Unit 46, which was attached to RAF Stormy Down in Porthcawl, South Wales. She operated as an Air Sea Rescue launch throughout her service career, until 1105 Marine Craft Unit was disbanded on the 31st March 1959.