It is sometime since I added to this section of the website but a lot has been happening. We have been conducting trials and crew training most weekends and things are beginning to come together now. We have established the need for more handles to hang onto and have two steel poles from floor to deckhead in the wheelhouse to hold onto when the bell ring - see previous items! Some have said it is so young ladies can pole dance for us in the various venues we will visit - I think we shall be too tired!!
We have pretty well planned our preferred route for all legs but will have contingency plans already arranged to slot in as/if/when necessary. Risk profiles and onboard protocols are being created and stores lists are being drawn up - I am looking after the gin!
It is time I said a bit about the intrepid bunch who are joining me on this adventure.
Bob Pennington is an old friend from my days in HM Customs and Excise. We were at Heathrow as Preventive Officers looking for smugglers and have known each other for about 40 years. Bob served for 22 years in the Customs Revenue Cutter fleet, 11 as a Cutter Commander so his knowledge of both fast craft and the ports we have to go to is immense and he will be a great asset.
Paul Carter is another friend this time from the Haven Marina in Lowestoft where we both keep our boats. Paul was in the Merchant Navy for a time and served in lifeboats for 23 years so again, his knowledge of the sea is excellent. As they proved when we went to sea today in Force 6 (!) their calm approach to handling boats in rough water was invaluable - particularly since I almost lost my breakfast at one stage! Must remember to take the tablets!
The last member is Tom Brissenden of whom I have written before since he is the engineer from Broom Boats Brundall who was responsible for the mechanical re-fit and installation of the new machinery - which is proving excellent so far. Brooms are allowing Tom to join us for the race as their contribution to our preparations and for which we - and he - are grateful. He is the youngest by far of any of us so will be the one to do the energetic bits which will be required!
The site already contains material about me so I will confine myself to a photograph taken last year in Athens when I was earning some of the money to fund this venture!
On a final note, there has been much debate between us as to whether we should/could take passengers for some of the legs but our decision has been made more difficult by some of the requirements laid down by the RYA which will add greatly to our costs. If we do, there will have to be stringent conditions attached but it will be something that very few people will have experienced. We hope to make our final decision very shortly so watch this space or get in touch to express interest if you wish.