About Us

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Master Shaper

Nigel Semmens has been working in the surfboard industry for over 40 years, but his real claim to fame was his career as a competitive surfer. Nigel was the most successful European surfer of the 1980s, even getting an invitation to the Stubbies with Steve Daniels in 1980. Sponsored by Gul and Ocean Magic Nigel was a very marketable commodity and went on countless trips with Alex Williams in tow to record everything in glorious technicolor.

His success really became evident with the twin fin. Nigel’s mastery of this board type saw the UKs first 360 in a competition up in Scarborough in 1981. At this stage Nigel hadn't even successfully pulled one off, but he had been trying for several sessions and coming close. Typical of Nigel, it took the final of the British Open being held up North to bring this manoeuvre to conclusion, “I just saw this section and fancied it, I thought “I'll blow you all away with this one” and I pulled it off, won the contest…”.

Up until then these sort of manoeuvres hadn’t even been seen in British waters, many said it couldn’t be done on the weaker English waves. Nigel proved them all wrong and within 12 months Grishka and the Owens twins could be seen following in Nigel's footsteps, on Ocean Magic boards that Nigel had shaped.

This single act seems to sum up Nigel very nicely, competitively rebellious. “Can’t” isn’t really an option and Nigel has continued to expand the horizons of surfing and surfboards ever since. He’s pretty much the same out of the water too, whether it is football or playing cards!

 

NS Measuring Dazz SandingWill Glassing 2014-01-17 13.43.45  

 

 


Competitive Record:

For those who want to know more about Nigel’s multi-coloured past we have heaps of info on our blog.

Nigel started work in the Ocean Magic factory at 18. Under Mooney McAllum’s tutelage he learnt about every aspect of surfboard manufacture, eventually taking over the factory and creating his own NS Surfboard brand. When this was combined with his knowledge of how a surfboard performs NS Boards became the leading high performance surfboards in the UK, ridden by some of the best riders.

Today Nigel still surfs, still charges, and still makes boards that surf unbelievably well. If you see him in the water you’ll still be blown away with his radical approach.