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Shipshape Boatbuilding & Woodwork is run by me, Anthony Mace.

I'm a wooden boatbuilder, who specialises in building lightweight, skin-on-frame boats and runs kayak & canoe-building courses.

Designing and making simple, beautiful and usable boats gives me huge satisfaction.

At school and university I always had access to workshops. I grew up kayaking in Devon, then much further afield (Nepal, British Columbia, The Alps...). They were the things I enjoyed the most. But after graduating with an MA from the Royal College of Art, I didn’t set foot in a workshop for over a decade.

I worked in a digital world, designing good experiences for people on the web. I set up my own company and taught design at university. At weekends and in the evenings, I did up a couple of VW vans, and worked on our family home.

When a friend died from cancer I knew life was too short, and I had to get back in the workshop and on the water. Looking to weave together a life-long love of kayaking, design and craftsmanship, I moved to Lyme Regis and enrolled to train at The Boat Building Academy.

When I returned to Bristol in 2015, the Underfall Yard had just re-opened some of their historic workshops with Lottery Funding and I took on a unit. It’s now a place to make boats that I can be proud of, that people use and that will last. It’s a satisfying reward when I help people build a boat and they say “I made that!”

Whether you build a boat, or I build it for you, it would be my pleasure to help you climb aboard your very own Shipshape boat.


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