Gary Vaughan - production and operations
I have been involved with boats pretty much all my life. My family owned a marine business that operated work boats around the Solent and Isle of Wight: commercial fishing and running charter trips for sea anglers, sightseers & divers.
Whilst at school, I learned how to sail and race dinghies at Christchurch Marine Training Centre. I managed to get a bit of a reputation for breaking boats, which was a good thing in a way, because the centre ran a 'You Break It - You Fix It' policy. With their guidance, I learned a lot more about basic boat building and repairing techniques than I wanted to know at the time.
In the summer of 1980, I left school then went to work for the family’s marine and heavy plant business. Learning how to tow and manoeuvre large heavy loads has been very useful in my boat building career. I also got several commissions of my own from local boat owners, doing general boat repairs and maintenance.
In the early 80s, I started crewing on larger keeled yachts, which led me to participating in various regattas and races including Cowes Week and the Fastnet. In 1988 I enrolled into boat-building collage, on a course run by the Marine Builders Training Trust. In the summer of 1989, Ian King offered me a work placement at Green Marine - where I stayed for the next 26 years, working my way up from being a Trainee in what was then a small boatyard of 16 people, to becoming the overall Production Manager of a world class superyacht factory, employing more than 120 people.
The experience I gained at Green Marine was simply not available anywhere else in the world. In that 26 years, my portfolio of projects pretty much mirrors that of Green Marine, with too many yachts to mention, but a few that stand out for me are the 92' Stealth; Whitbread 60 Intrum Justitia, the America’s Cup yachts Prada Luna Rossa and later Mascalzone Latino; the Volvo Ocean Race Yachts Assa Abloy, Ericsson, Black Pearl and Kosatka; Mini Maxis RÁN II & Jethou. Wally Cento’s Hamilton & Galateia, 108’ Inoui, the 78’ Catamaran Allegra, and the IMOCA 60 Hugo Boss.
The great thing about the Green Marine, for most of my time there, there was a great togetherness and team camaraderie right through the company, all working hard for the company, but also working for each other which not only produced exceptional products, but also produced a great atmosphere to work in. Within 12 years, Green Marine had gone from being 16 people in a small shed, to over 120 people working on four factory sites - and I had become overall Production Manager of the three Lymington sites.
Ten years on; in 2010, I was made responsible for finding and setting up the new factory in Hythe, and then for merging the company's four factories and workforces into one. My title was Production Manager with primary responsibility for planning, organising and supervising all production in the yard, but expanded to include the Management responsibility of the Factory, Quality Assurance, Health and Safety, Human Resources, and Environmental Control.
I left Green Marine in early 2016 and went to work for Premier Composite Technologies (PCT) in Dubai as the Marine Manufacturing Manager, responsible for the overall production management of Marine department with a broad spectrum of both sailing yachts and power boats including the Maxi 72 Cannonball, JV 74 Nyumba, and Premier 61 power boat.
In the Summer of 2016, I came home to England, and soon after started talking to Geoff about making FIBRE Mechanics a reality…...
In the Autumn of 2016, I returned to PCT with a team of FIBRE Mechanics Boat Builders, where I led building the latest Carkeek Fast 40mkiv - Girls on Film, as well as other FIBRE Mechanics boat builders generally supporting the PCT marine department, including working on the new JV74 - Nyumba.
In early Summer 2017, myself and the FIBRE Mechanics Production Team returned to Lymington and Immediately started working on the new mechanise project…..
I have been involved in the production of many leading-edge yachts including, 12 x Volvo or Whitbread Ocean Race Yachts, 4 x Americas Cup campaign builds (Including some with LBAR) 2 x Wally Cento’s, 4 x IMOCA 60’s, 3 x Mini Maxis, 8 x TP52s, 8 x IMS or IOR class yachts up to 60’, 1 x 78’ Fast Cruising Catamaran, 5 x other Superyachts up to 130’. Plus involved in the production of power boats including the XSR48 Super-boat, Premier 38, Premier 61 and Melges 26. Also, many new builds for the RNLI including the Severn, Trent, Mersey, Atlantic, Shannon and Tamar class lifeboats.
In my career, I have been involved with well over 200 new builds, numerous refit and modification projects, plus involvement in building complicated composite components, including several secretive military projects.
Within our group of founders, we have the experience to create a world class and industry leading company. My contribution is my calm and balanced approach to composite production, my committed and can-do approach to making things happen, coupled with my empirical knowledge / experience of setting up and running a leading edge, high-tech, world class operation and the attitude required to generate a committed /can-do culture from our workforce.
Our mission is to create a sustainable and world class, industry leading company, with the environment where workers feel happy, fulfilled and feel part of, whilst producing an excellent standard of work to budget, quality and everyone feels proud to be involved.