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The History of British Seagull

The History of British Seagull





1931 - The original Seagull engine was designed by Marston engineers John Way-hope, and Bill Pinn as an industrial engine and were called 'Marston' British Seagulls. They were produced by the 'Sunbeam Motorcycle Company’ Sunbeamland, Wolverhampton. Robert Harper in time was recruited to assist with gearbox design alterations. 

Old Picture of the original factory

The originals were much the same in design as the more modern engines and incorporated reverse gears and water-cooled exhausts. The engines were available in both short and long shaft and the models ranged from the Standard and the High Power through to the Super High Power. This engine was a twin cylinder 10hp version capable of powering boats up to 30 feet (9.1m).


            1934 - Production of the ‘Super British Seagull’ with reverse gearbox

            1936 - The company moved to Bristol as the Bristol Motor Boat Co..

1938 - Seagull had moved into new premises on the Quay at Poole, Dorset. In honour of this the name Marston Seagull was changed to British Seagull and the tag line 'The Best Outboard Motor in the World' was added, this was later changed to 'The Best Outboard Motor for the World'

Mid 1950s - British Seagull moved to new premises at Fleets Bridge, Poole. At this time everything except the gears and the carburettors were made on site.


1960’s – British Seagull reached the peak of their popularity.


1982 - British Seagull moved again to Newtown Business Park, Poole and launched the large 7.5hp Model 170. This engine featured an engine cover and was the forerunner of the QB Series.


1987 – Introduction of the QB series at the London Boat Show with the 6hp Kingfisher; soon followed by the 5hp Osprey and the 4hp Curlew.


1996 - Production of the British Seagull engines ceased but spare parts supply continued.


1999 - Chillington Marine Ltd, owners of British Seagull pulled out of the marine leisure market. Sheridan Marine on the River Thames in Oxfordshire took over British Seagull and remain the custodians of this classic.

01326 241778

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