About us

Formed in 2010 as an LLP, Rob Barnard has been the driving force behind the business. Rob worked for Mercury for 15 years and then decided it was time to start his own business. His family is from Cornwall, so Looe felt like a natural choice. The name Black Dog Marine comes from Rob’s first black Labrador, aptly named Diesel. Unfortunately, Diesel is no longer with us and yet there is a Mk2 version by way of Molly.

Black Dog Marine has always been in Looe. The first unit was outgrown in under three years and they have resided in the current unit since 2013.

The crew:

Rob Barnard – Managing Partner
Originally trained as an aircraft engineer, Rob soon turned his skills to the marine industry. He was on the production line at Mercury in the Midlands where he ‘cut his teeth’ then moved up to the engine overhaul bay, where he worked for six years. Now it becomes clear why Rob knows engines inside-out! The next stage in his career was a move the the special products division which took care of various products for the MOD, Police, RNLI and so on… and no, he’s not allowed to talk about it.The final stage of his time at Mercury was in the multi-fuel programme working with end users, boat manufacturers and the internal R&D team. Whilst traveling around may sound very glamorous, it was time for Rob to spend more time at home.

Sam Robathan – Engineer
Starting as an apprentice, Sam is now a qualified full time engineer. Don’t be offended if he runs out of the workshop mid conversation – he’s also an RNLI lifeboat crew member.

Chris Boal РEngineer 
Previously working on the Cremyll ferry as boatmaster and engineer, Chris brings a different perspective as well as great local knowledge.

Dan Margetts – Engineer
Water is in Dan’s blood. He’s a part time engineer, part time fisherman and another crew member of the RNLI lifeboat. In fact, it’s you’re more likely to find Dan on the water than on dry land.

Chris Puckey – Apprentice
Joining in 2017, Chris is the newest member of the Black Dog team and has started an apprenticeship in marine engineering.

Dianne Barnard – Administrator
As well as keeping the office in running order, Dianne is also Rob’s mum. Some might say that without her coming in, the unit wouldn’t get tidied up – well, Rob wouldn’t want to be told off by his mum in front of the team!