sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : Sir Fred Allen: A yachtsman remembered + Audio
Sir Fred Allen: A yachtsman remembered + Audio

'Sir Fred Allen, All Black great and longtime sailor.'   
Sir Fred Allen, known to most as a top All Black captain, outstanding rugby coach and New Zealander passed away on early Sunday morning at the age of 92 years.

He was New Zealand's oldest living All Black.

But Sir Fred had another side as a long time sailor and member of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron for 60 years, sailing A class keelers.

In their excellent book on Sir Fred, 'Fred The Needle', authors Allan Sayers and Les Watkins tell of how Sir Fred went into battle for the Manly Sailing Club, built on the beautiful white sand beach about 40 minutes north of Auckland. The club was initially built by holiday bach owners who initially moved into the area, but latterly it became one of Auckland's northern suburbs and the marine playground became a residential area for many.

Going hand in hand with rising property values, many of the newer arrivals would have liked to see the club removed from the foreshore, but as one of those who had helped build the club 50 years previously, Fred Allen stepped forward in the club's hour of need, in 1997.

Faced with a dwindling membership, and struggling to survive, the club needed friends - desperately. Applications to expand had been declined, and the one room facility didn't serve the needs of the sailors it had.

The club faced the usual gaggle of negative protestors who owned nearby properties, claiming that the club would be virtually a pub on the beach, and that it would become a haven for under age drinking.

Fred, deputy Patron of the Club, put his hand up and went into battle against the Rodney District Council for the sailing club.

‘These were cheap shots, below the belt, leveled at a youth and family sailing club that had never had a black mark against its name in more than 50 years,’ Fred told the council, ‘And as for alcohol it had never been a part of this youth and family club, nor will it be in the future.’

Racing in the 2011 3.7 National Championships off Manly Sailing Club -  Tim and Sean Griffiths and Paterson   Click Here to view large photo
Like true bureaucrats, and slaves to their process, the Council in addition to turning down the three applications, turned around and sent the Club a crippling invoice each time for its costs in hearing the applications, totaling $10,000 in all.

While providing racing for its members in variety of small boats, the Manly Sailing Club also ran learn to sail classes for youngsters - providing a vital service for the local community.

In May 1998, the protest group tried to have the club moved off the foreshore, and its death seemed assured. Sadly the club's membership after being repeatedly kicked by the bureaucrats, had lost their fight, and only the Club Patron, his wife and one Club member were prepared to continue.

Sir Fred enlisted the help of another Knight, Sir Peter Blake, who poured scorn on the Council's proposal at a Hearing in May 1998.'‘I certainly would not let my children race it a yacht club which had no surveillance of the sea. That would he foolhardy and unacceptable to me as a parent. I hope that the persons writing such submission will he prepared to front the media if an accident happens that would have been avoidable by the correct siting of such a yacht club facility.'

That was followed by the appearance in the Council Chamber by Fred Allen. Long feared and revered for his team talks to his All Black team in the three years he was an undefeated coach, Fred showed that the old magic was not lost.

(As an aside, most All Blacks feared Fred's team talks, more than what an opposition team could do to them on the Rugby field. Including one where after a dreadful first-half display the team were treated to total, stony silence from their coach. As they left Allen cut them to the bone with the words 'After you, Ladies', and let them get on with it).

Fred refuted the misinformation that had been spread over many years by the protest groups, telling the Council that 'it's about time these selfish people came to their senses and started to think of the welfare of the youth of the district'.

How often have variations of this scenario been repeated in Council hearings around New Zealand? Sadly, how often have these words been required?

Long story short, is that Fred was more than a match for the Council, who approved the extension to the Manly Sailing Club, and left the clubhouse in its place on the foreshore that it had enjoyed for over 50 years. It now has a new yacht club, which has been the host to many sailing regattas over the subsequent years.

Sir Fred will be remembered at his Service today, Wednesday, at Eden Park - but maybe sailors too, should pause for a few moments and reflect on the passing on the passing of one of their own.



Acknowledgements: Our thanks to Peter Montgomery for kindly allowing replay of the interview with Sir Fred Allen on the occasion of the bestowing of his Knighthood in 2010. The above story was adapted from 'Fred the Needle' published by Hodder Moa.


by Sail-World

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=96745

10:56 PM Tue 1 May 2012GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.


Related News Stories:

29 Apr 2012  Sam Osborne wins the Baltic Lifejackets NZ Women’s Keelboat Nationals
29 Apr 2012  Big interest in 2012 Auckland Winter Sprint Racing for Optimists
28 Apr 2012  Osborne leads on Day 1 of Baltic Lifejackets NZ Women’s Keelboat Nats
28 Apr 2012  ISAF World Cup: New Zealand sailors win two medals at Hyeres
27 Apr 2012  North Sails retains the NZ Marine Industry Sailing Challenge Trophy
27 Apr 2012  ISAF World Cup: Four to contest two Medal Races for New Zealand
26 Apr 2012  Steinlager 2 about to end her overseas sojourn
26 Apr 2012  ISAF World Cup: Kiwis slide as Hyeres competition intensifies
25 Apr 2012  ISAF World Cup: Murdoch wins two races on a windy Day 3 at Hyeres
22 Apr 2012  NZL 49er in South of France preparing for Semaine Olympique Francaise
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World















America's Cup: Challenger calls Competitor Meeting ahead of deadline *Feature by Richard Gladwell Sail-World.com/nz,




















































NYYC Race Week - Yachting history on display
Rescued sailors reach shore after dramatic ocean rescue
Half Ton Classics Cup: Swuzzlebubble out front on Day 1 + Video
New York Yacht Club Race Week - Yachting history on display
Volvo Cork Week - Thrilling conditions welcome international fleet
Nacra 17 Europeans: Success for Italy's Bissaro and Sicouri
America's Cup: 2017 venue short-list reduced to two Cities
Formula Windsurfing Youth and Master Worlds overall
49er and 49erFX Europeans: Pitfalls aplenty on day 1 + Video
ISAF Youth Worlds - Laser Radial sailors look to join list of legends
Coville soon to chase solo circumnavigation record in giant trimaran
Fierce competition at the Meanline Fins Slalom Challenge
Volvo Ocean Race - Team Brunel opt for experienced winner
Bakewell-White supermaxi designed to take Transpac's Barn Door Trophy *Feature
Crew rescued by navy patrol from J/111 racer after Mayday in storm
Team Alvimedica practice in Newport, RI - Photos
18 foot skiff European Championship (Open Europeans) - Final results
Nacra 17 European Championships - No action on day 1
ISAF Youth Worlds - 29er and SL16 sailors prepare for battle + Video
Volvo Ocean Race: Eight new crew members named by teams
Volvo Ocean Race: New additions to Spanish team announced   
2014 Cape Panwa Hotel Phuket Raceweek - Phuket Island is ready to host   
PWA Awaza World Cup - Cyril Moussilmani and Delphine Cousin on top   
Foiling Week - Moth Class Italian Open Championship Day 2   
America's Cup: Luna Rossa foiling in AC45s at their Italian base   
Star World Championship - Germans claim dramatic win in Malcesine   
PWA Awaza World Cup - Down to the wire in Turkmenistan   
Route Halifax Saint-Pierre - Off to France!   
Nacra 17 Europeans - La Grande Motte back in Olympic classes arena   
Stena Match Cup Sweden - Hansen hat trick in Marstrand + Video   
Route Halifax Saint-Pierre Race keeps an eye on Arthur   
World Match Racing Tour: See the Finals replay at the Stena Match Cup   
Newport International Boat Show unveils exciting 'At The Helm' Program   
Stena Match Cup Sweden - First blood to Hansen over Canfield + Video   
Star World Championship - Americans claim race win in Malcesine   
PWA Awaza World Cup - Weather halts action on day 4   
Clipper Race - Henri Lloyd wins OneDLL Cup into Den Helder   
Clipper Race - Close match racing in closing stages of the OneDLL Cup   
Volvo Ocean Race: Spanish play catch-up with under 100 days to go   
World Match Racing Tour: Catch the live action at the Stena Match Cup   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL WAS US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT