Karen of Ladram is one of the Waterdance static netting fleet that focuses on hake, monkfish and turbot off the South-West of England, and is skippered by Simon Porter.

Built in 1996 as whitefish trawler Boy John for Scottish owners, the 20.84 metre Karen of Ladram was acquired in 2014. It was taken by its new crew to Parkol in Whitby for the trawl gear to be removed from stern, before the refit to convert it to a netter was completed in Brixham. This was the first trawler-to-netter conversion, carried out by Stride Engineering, which has subsequently completed two more conversions for the Waterdance fleet.

Despite predictions when Karen of Ladram’s refit was completed that the boat’s 600-box capacity fishroom was too big for it ever to be filled, Simon and his crew did just that in their first trip and have made consistently steady landings ever since.

Karen of Ladram replaced the older Sparkling Line, and its larger capacity provides the crew with a greater level of comfort on board, as well as the capacity to cope with fishing when it becomes heavy.


Method: Netter
Call Sign: MWRD6
Registered Port: Padstow
Home Port: Padstow
Port Letters: PW3
Overall Length: 20.84
Breadth: 6.86
Year Of Build: 1996
Country Of Build: UK
Date Into Service: 10/12/1996
SKipper: Simon Porter
Crew Size:  7
Aare Fished:  Area 7 / SW Approaches
Fish Caught Hake, Monkfish, Turbot, Cod, Haddock, Pollock, other mixed fish


Skipper: Simon Porter

Skipper Simon Porter is one of the South-West’s most experienced static gear fishermen, and has spent practically all of his career netting, now operating Karen of Ladram from Newlyn and working with a core crew who have stayed with him over several successive boats.

The fishing gear space at the stern with its automated stacker makes the workload easier, and the space available allows Karen of Ladram to carry both gill nets for the hake fishery and trammel nets for monkfish and turbot without the need to put gear ashore to switch from one fishery to another. Karen of Ladram works short trips of a few days at a time to ensure that catches are landed in prime condition, and with catches landed across several south-west auctions.