In 1951 Alan Coombes began building dinghies on the Bembridge embankment and was joined by Peter Scott in 1956 and so a boat building partnership was formed. As time passed and the business grew it evolved into building cruising yachts and motorboats. Technology also advanced and with the advent of glass reinforced plastic construction, the focus of the yard slowly changed from traditional boat building. Over 60 years on, the core work of the yard encompasses repairs, maintenance and storage and this longevity is a testament to the reliability and competitiveness of the company as well as its high standards and friendly service.
The first Solent Scows were built around 100 years ago in Lymington. After the Second World War fleets of scows grew all around the Solent as their popularity increased and at their yard, A. A Coombes built over two hundred wooden scows, the majority of which were based in Bembridge. During the 1970s, the following for these classic dinghies waned and many were sold on to Yarmouth, Keyhaven and Christchurch.
The revival of the Bembridge Scow came in the mid-1980s when a mould was made of one of the original wooden hulls and they began to be built again but now in glass reinforced plastic. To date over two hundred and twenty G.R.P. Bembridge Scows have been built confirming the design’s timeless appeal and reliability.