Singer, songwriter and writer Andrew Fagan has had a love of sailing since his childhood in Wellington, where he spent hours like many young Kiwis ‘messing about in boats.’ When Andrew’s two sons were born he inspired in them a love of boats, but became frustrated with the abundance of poorly designed, predominantly motorized models available.
Motivated by his sons enthusiasm, he started looking for a way to fuse good design principles with functionality, to produce sailing boats that looked genuine, could sail at speed, but were durable enough for rough handling by small hands.
Using scrap material collected from boat yards (and a mountain of gaffa tape!), Andrew designed and built an increasingly sophisticated range of sailing boats. These were refined and perfected while the family lived aboard canal boats on the Grand Union Canal and the River Thames in England during the 1990s.
The consistently enthusiastic response he received from children (and their parents) wherever the boats were sailed sowed the seed of an idea for turning Andrew’s hobby in to a fully-fledged business.
Aside from his skills as a boat designer and builder, Andrew is a gifted writer and storyteller. He came up with the idea of breathing life into the boats by creating a series of characters and an imaginary world, known as The Land of Saggimau, for them to inhabit.
Initially Andrew developed six characters: Davilon the Morocat, Slib Dib the Nib, Languid Larry and the Tiny Triplets (Whangarei, Whakatane and Phellington), and has written a series of children’s stories about them, the first being On Plastic Bag Patrol (Over the Curve of the Earth).
Andrew Fagan is well known to a generation of New Zealanders as the lead singer of the hit 1980s band The Mockers, and has been a regular on the music and broadcasting scene, both here and overseas.
Following the success of The Mockers’ 1985 hit Forever Tuesday Morning, Fagan won the RIANZ 1985 award for Top Male Vocalist of the Year. He later recorded and performed as a solo artist under the name Fagan and with his band LIG. He has authored a sailing-themed autobiography, Swirly World, the Solo Voyages (2002), and several collections of poetry.
He has also been involved with the TVNZ Intrepid Journeys television series.
The Morocat project originally started as a hobby while the he and his wife, author and broadcaster Karyn Hay, were raising a young family in the UK.
Now a passion of more than a decade has been realized with the launch this November of the boat range.
Buyers of the initial, limited editions run of ‘Davilon the Morocat’ in New Zealand will receive a free copy of the storybook as a launch promotion.