There has been an inexorable drive upmarket over the last three decades over the last three decades by the larger UK boat manufacturers.
Builders chase the greater financial rewards of larger vessels while withdrawing from the threat of mass- production competitors from across the channel and the Atlantic.
The smallest Princess flybridge boat is now 3in longer than the largest model was in the mid-’80s. The only blip in this overarching reach for the stars was the recession in the late 2000s.
Stalled sales saw new markets explored. Princess, for example, brought out its first new sub-40-footer since the 1990s.
And meanwhile, up in Norfolk, plans were afoot at the home of Broom to capture fresh hearts and minds.
The result was unveiled at the 2012 Southampton Boat Show, where a pair of brand new models were launched.
The Broom 30 Coupe and 35 Coupe were not only the first boats much below 40ft this century from this 100-year-old brand, they were also the first to sport aft cockpits rather than the aft-cabin layouts so beloved of both Broom and its loyal customer base since the Broom Ocean 34 Sedan of the ’90s.
Desperate times, desperate measures. Both boats proved a great success, and it’s the largest of the two that we present today for your delectation.
The 35 Coupe might have been a whole new concept and style, but Broom stayed true to the market it knows so well – inland and coastal cruising.
Designed by Andrew Wolstenholme, the hull is semi-displacement and sports a shallow keel, giving improved low-speed directional stability ideal for inland cruising.
Yet with its category B certification, the boat is equally adept at offshore work, albeit without the top end of planing mid- 30-footers.
Ultimately, the 35 Coupe achieves exactly what Broom set out to create – a boat that is entirely at home on the inland waterways, yet acquits itself well offshore.
Its manageable size and first-rate build quality should ensure it remains a popular secondhand purchase for years to come.