To understand the Cockwells Duchy 35, you need to understand its roots.

It’s built in Falmouth by Cockwells, a yard that specialises in hand-built one-off superyacht tenders and bespoke wooden sail boats and motor launches.

About six years ago, Cockwells began producing the GRP Duchy 27 as a (relatively) low-cost boat that could be built ‘on spec’ rather than to order, although Dave Cockwell, managing director of the boatyard, has never yet completed one before it was sold.

With the 27 selling well, the time seemed right for a larger version, and Dave commissioned Andrew Wolstenholme, the man behind the Duchy 27, to turn his ideas into naval architectural reality.

The 35 apes its smaller sibling perfectly, sporting the same graceful ‘gentleman’s motor launch’ profile.

It’s no coincidence that from a distance, it could easily be mistaken for a wooden boat – the hull was originally created in wood as the plug from which the mould was taken. But this is no marina ornament.

Step aboard via the chunky bathing platform and transom door or hop over the low-profile cockpit coaming via a neat step built into the topsides, and you enter a world of practical thinking.

The cockpit is deep, large and simple, with a hockey stick of seating either side of the transom door, wrapping forward along the sides.

A neat side door built into the starboard coaming allows an easy walkthrough to deeply bulwarked side decks and up on to an uncluttered foredeck with stainless-steel bollards and a concealed anchor and winch.

Read the full report in the November 2017 issue of MBY.