The GP14 sailing dinghy was designed by Jack Holt in 1949 and has its origins in Wales (its sail emblem is the legendary Bell of Aberdovey). It was originally sponsored by the Yachting World magazine for home construction from the then comparatively new material of Marine Plywood. It was designed as a general purpose sailing dinghy but it was also excellent to row, and had a standard conversion for fitting a small outboard motor.
The GP14 was initially designed with a main and small jib as a comfortable family dinghy. Nowadays It has 3 sails: a mainsail, either a large, overlapping foresail (called a ‘Genoa’) or a smaller jib and a traditional symmetrical spinnaker set on a spinnaker pole.With a full rig it is an exciting racing boat. GP14s are used for all levels of sailing, from training beginners through club racing to competing on the Open Meeting circuit. It can be sailed by people of all ages and even for competitive racing there is a wide tolerance of all-up crew weight,
Over the years the class association has adapted to the times. Construction materials have moved from the original wood and marine ply, through traditional glass-reinforced plastic (GRP) to the latest foam reinforced plastic (FRP) designs which offer superb stiffness and durability. Some models have wooden decks with a plastic hull. In recent years a Series II design has emerged with a double bottom that comes upright almost empty after a capsize.
Nominally for two people, it can carry three in comfort and with just the mainsail set it can also be sailed single-handed. It is therefore difficult to find a more versatile family boat.