Captain Ahab: The sun will come out tomorrow!

Club News | February 21st, 2016 | No comments yet

I am getting a wee bit fed up with the all the rain and leaden skies.
Every day we get up to more winds, rain and storm warnings. It really is getting quite depressing.
I yearn for blue skies and a crisp, cold, snow bearing north wind roaring in from Siberia and the Arctic.
Is this what they call Global Warming?

And has anyone else noticed but it is only since we started to give names to our storms that we have had so many.
And I would also like to point out that we have not had Storm Ahab. Yet.
However with this weather Boaters people are actually very well prepared. Better than the rest of the population.
And this is brilliant given our proximity to rivers that flood.

I don’t know about anyone else but when I now go out to my local Waitrose, Tesco or Lidl (other supermarket brands are available) I never venture out unless clad in full Oilies and sailing boots. I would observe that few others are as well equipped.I have even been known to add my lifejacket to this ensemble when theweather has been particularly severe. It might get funny looks from other shoppers but you can never be too careful these days and I am sure the RNLI and the Marine Coastguard Agency would approve.

Better safe than sorry, as many a Boaters Skipper has said to me, as we put in all three reefs in anticipation of the breeze stiffening from Force 2 to Force 3 the day after tomorrow.
But I must admit it is not easy squeezing into and driving a car in full wet weather gear and lifejacket.

But I am now going further.

Given the worsening and continuing bad weather I have started giving a full safety briefing to the assembled household whenever weather warnings issued. For any place in the country.
I want all risks minimised should we be venturing out. Everyone to know their role in the event that something might go awry.
It is now standard practice to be clipped on to jackstays that have been fitted when moving from house to car. Especially at night.
And lifelines must be worn at all times when driving in any wet weather that has been baptized and named.
Some of you may think that this is going too far but it is what we would do when on board and these days the edges between H2O and terra firma are becoming decidedly blurred.

I am taking no chances.

And this weekend I have organised a man overboard drill in the garden in the event that anyone coming to the house might stumble off the path to the house and end up in the watery lawn.
Just turn up if you feel you need to practice.

We might even run a Boaters Sea Survival Course where once there was my lawn. Tell me if interested.
Let’s just hope that the need for such precautions might come to an end soon.
And hope too that, in the words of ‘Annie’, the sun will come out tomorrow.
Before my feet become webbed.

Captain Ahab



And the Winner is…….

Club News | January 31st, 2016 | No comments yet

It may not have escaped your notice that this is awards season.

And every week it seems the stars of stage, screen and TV set queue up in their designer rented outfits to stroll down the redcarpet, to feign undeserving humility and to blub uncontrollably as they thank all and sundry for the gong they have just collected.


You can win a Golden Globes, a Brit, a Bafta, a Tony, an Oscar and no doubt some other person’s name.

But I would like to suggest to our Social Committee that we should have awards.

We could call them The Boaties or the Yachties or something similar.
Or how about a Tom, after Mr Cunliffe, a perennial Boaters favourite. And inspiration to many.

I for one would welcome the chance to totter down a red carpet one evening to the Rugby Club in my best Jimmy Choo’s and the latest Vera Wang creation.
We could have the lights, the envelopes, the speeches, the total awards package.
Now this is not as far-fetched an idea as it might sound.
We have already had the award for Best Photographer and following the recent quiz, the Cleverest Boater.

We just need to expand on the idea a bit and develop the categories.
Naturally we would have an award for Best Sound. But as in previous years it is likely that there would be no nominations for this award.
Best Costume would be a shoo in.
The hot favourite would be the design team behind the Boaters team outfits as modelled by our Committee at our monthly gatherings. I doubt there would be much competition for this one.

After that it might get a bit tricky.
And while the Oscars might have categories for Best Supporting Actor and Best Actor and Best Director, we would need to have Best Mate (or is that a horse?) and Best Skipper. It would be tricky to call the winner of those awards, or even the nominations.

Similarly it would be tight to call the winner of the Best Meal, Best Cruise and Best Social. Quite frankly we would be spoilt for choice.
And while we are not known for our comedy and side splitting moments, the tale of one hapless Boater trying singlehandedly to haul his boat alongside against wind and tide to the amusement of the other crews, must be a hot favourite for the Comedy Award.

I think this would be a great evening.
And surely far more interesting than discussing our Constitution yet again.
Wouldn’t it be great to see us all glam just for one night?

To stroll down the red carpet into Bromsgrove Rugby Club with flash bulbs going off all around.
And to see our prize winners feign delighted surprise and to hear them, assuming we have sound, thank their family, their crew, the RYA, Ben Ainslie, Lord Nelson, Francis Drake, their therapist for being there for them and inspiring them to win this award.
And to watch hardened Skippers and Mates shed a tear as they clutch their Tom? Or does that sound rude.
Now that would be a great evening.

And on that note I am off to share this brilliant idea with our Social Secretary.
And to prepare my unprepared acceptance speech for when our esteemed Commodore opens that wee gold envelope and announces ‘And the winner is…..’


Now smile hard, look as if I’m pleased, and try harder next year.

Captain Ahab



Watch the Birdie

Club News | January 7th, 2016 | No comments yet

photographerIt was very pleasing to see the quality of photography at last month’s annual Boaters photography competition, clearly we are not just skilled sailors but also skilled and creative photographers.

Captain Ahab was wondering what other creative skills we have among our members that we rarely surface.

A budding writer perhaps?

A musician or two?

Maybe even an inventor to rival Mr Jobs?

Or a Mary Berry-esque cake maker?

However one thing struck Captain Ahab as he wandered around and among the images presented for show.

All the images showed and captured the serenity of sailing cruising.

We had underwater photographs capturing what happens beneath the waves.

We had images of boats and rigging and other assorted pieces of equipment taken from strange and unusual angles.

And we captured boating and yachting in a range of lighting-from the moody to the sumptuous to the stunning.

Captain Ahab was mightily impressed by the quality and range of images that were exhibited and would congratulate all those who won and commends all those who took part.


However there was one thing missing from the pix on show.

None captured the raw and at times non-photogenic sincerity that sometimes accompanies a Boaters sailing weekend.

We did not have a single image of a Boater feeling decidedly ill and taking a rest downstairs in the saloon or being hyper active over the sides.

No one captured the frenzy of activity and sometimes panic as the crew try to reef the mainsail in a growing breeze and an increasingly angry sea.

Nor did we see on the show the gripped tension of a recently qualified and promoted Skipper or Mate try to ferry glide his boat alongside a packed marina in front of an audience of gong-dooglers hoping to see a prang.

So maybe in our next photographic competition we might get some shots showing the reality of a Boaters weekend.


Beautifully shot of course!


Captain Ahab

(N.B. You can view the 2015 photo competition gallery here).



Photo Competition 2015

Photo Galleries | December 30th, 2015 | No comments yet

1519 Are you yanking my chain

1st  Place

Are you yanking my chain?

Gary Carter

3568 Under the hull

Joint 2nd  Place

Under the hull

Andy Gardner


2469 Rafting up in Stangate

Joint 2nd  Place

Rafting up in Stangate

Jane Jones

 2527 Racing Away

Racing Away

Tony Martin


 1568 Masts


Andy Gardner

2568 Storm brewing

Storm Brewing

Andy Gardner



2580 Front seats

Front Seats

Steve Rackley


 3519 On the naughty step

On the naughty step

 Gary Carter

 2556 Istanbul ferry

Instanbul Ferry

 Trevor Rackley

1580 Dressed to kill

Dressed to kill

 Steve Rackley

1556 At the end of my rainbow

At the end of my rainbow

Trevor Rackley

1517 Hold on tight

Hold on tight

Deborah Bates

 3557 Anageda


Esther Rackley

3556 This wont affect my security deposit will it

This wont affect my security

deposit will it?

Trevor Rackley

3527 Leading the pack

Leading the pack

Tony Martin

3517 GB America's Cup team. Solent 2015

GB America’s Cup team. Solent 2015

Deborah Bates

 3453 Slipway


Trish Lloyd

3269 Waking up in Bucklers Hard

Waking up in Bucklers Hard

Mike Martin

2566 Just like Home

Just like home

Chris Kavanagh

2558 Clipper Fleet

Clipper Fleet

Charles Hessey

2557 Old meets New in Gorda Sound

Old meets new in Gorda Sound

Esther Rackley

2519 Just going for a dip

Just taking a dip!

 Gary Carter

2517 ....I don't recall our lead skipper mentioning a storm in the forecast!!!!

….I don’t recall our lead skipper mentioning a storm in the forecast!

Deborah Bates

2453 Fowey boats

Fowey Boats

Trish Lloyd

 2269 Me and Tom

Me and Tom

Mike Martin


1566 Marina Quay at Sunset

Marina Quay at Sunset

Chris Kavanagh

1563 Youre so Boaters

You’re so Boaters!

Alex Proudfoot


1558 High and Dry

High and dry

Charles Hessey

1557 Gorda Sound

Gorda Sound

Esther Rackley

1527 Heading West

Heading West

Tony Martin

1469 Seals on buoy

Seals on buoy

Jane Jones

1453 Hull


Trish Lloyd

1269 Time to relax after a long days sail

Time to relax after a long days sail

Mike Martin


Boaters Committee 2016

Club News | December 8th, 2015 | No comments yet

Following the AGM on the 18th November, we are pleased to announce that the committee for 2016 was elected as follows:

Tony Martin

Tony Martin

Club Commodore & Website Admin

Alan Gilmour

Alan Gilmour

Vice Commodore

Paul Sharpe

Paul Sharpe


 Trevor Rackley

Trevor Rackley

Club Secretary

Gary Carter

Shorebased Training Coordinator

Esther Rackley

Esther Rackley

Social & Events Secretary, Librarian

Tony Martin

Tony Martin

Cruising Secretary

Trish Lloyd

Trish Lloyd

Membership Secretary

Mike Martin

Mike Martin



Boaters Events