Robertson Boats is a third generation boatbuilding firm and has an established reputation in custom boatbuilding, repairs and refits of all types.
Our yard is situated on the southern banks of the Mahurangi River near Warkworth - a delightful colonial township built around the Mahurangi river basin, north of Auckland. During the summer months the river and basin are full of boaties visiting the town and reprovisioning. Warkworth offers an excellent range of shopping facilities, accomodation and restaurants. The surrounding district abounds with recreational opportunities with plenty of bays, beaches and park reserves.
Lidgard Bros. Boatbuilders, 1938
If you live in New Zealand and you love boats, chances are you have heard of the Lidgard family. In 1932 Lidgard Bros. was formed by Roy, Fred and Mike Lidgard. The boatyard was situated in Hamer Street on the western reclaimation (Tank farm) in St Mary's Bay.
Launching of the first Fairmile, 1943.
(Note: Jim Young & Chris Robertson in punt on left)
They were prominent in the design and build of 22 ft. Mullet boats, short-end keel yachts and commercial fishing and work boats. During World War II, they amalgamated with other boat builders to produce Fairmile 112' escort naval craft.
After the war Roy's son Jim, Fred's son John and Betsy Lidgards son Chris Robertson were all apprenticed at Lidgard Bros. Jim Young was also an apprentice at this time. All four apprentices became prominent boat builders.
Chris Robertson finished his time at Lidgard Bros. and went to work for Col Wilde between the years of 1946 and 1952. Then from 1952 to 1960 he worked with both Jim Young and Bryn Wilson. In 1960, Chris started his own business - Chris Robertson Boats, a boatyard set up on Target Road on Auckland's North Shore. There he designed all of the boats that he built and toward the end of his time there, his two sons Martin and Conrad joined the business, both having served their time at Bryn Wilson Boats.
Delray, designed and built by Chris Robertson
Chris receiving an award for the design and build of Delray, at the 1973 Boat Show Awards.
By the winter of 1981, the business was called "Chris Robertson Boats & Sons" and the property was purchased on Alnwick Street, next to the Mahurangi River in Warkworth. Chris retired not long after, and the business name changed to "Robertson Brothers" with Martin and Conrad in charge.
In 1995, Martin sold Conrad his share of the business and the name was changed to "Robertson Boats", as it is to this day. It is currently managed by Conrad Robertson.