In 1965 John Fairbrother, John Prime and Barry Pearce bought the Kitty from Browns and rigged her out for charter work from Maldon with, a six pointed star in her tops’l, which was the house flag of the original owner, Alf Horlock.
As the Kitty’s registration had been closed she had to be registered as My Kitty, but this name is never used. It is unlucky to change a barge’s name.
Later, John Fairbrother, who had been one of Cranfield’s sailing barge skippers, became sole owner and worked her under sail only up to Hythe Quay. In 1977 Maldon council placed moorings in the narrow channel leading up to the Hythe Quay and John Fairbrother could no longer tack the barge up to the Hythe. He refused to have an engine and sold the Kitty be a charter barge from Ocean Village, Portsmouth.
The barge still has her original pine keelson and stern cabin and, in her time on the south coast, she was painted green. In 2009, Roger Myatt bought the Kitty and returned her to the East Coast as a charter barge working from the Hythe, Maldon. Her skipper is Kevin Burtonshaw and Lindon is mate and there is a catering staff of two or three if the full 40 people are aboard. Good catering makes a successful charter barge. Her crew sail the Kitty on passages, but because of the danger of sweeping passengers off the deck for river trips she sails, ‘charter barge style,’ with the mainsail half brailed up to the sprit.