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Bowyers Sailing Weekend, 31 May to 2 June

The Worshipful Company of Bowyers Sailing Club (WCBSC) made its second outing over the weekend 31 May to 2 June in (mostly) excellent sailing conditions. This time Mark Elliott, David Laxton, Nigel Heilpern and Bowyers' Clerk Tony Marinos were joined by Freeman Colonel Andy Hadfield , Vice Commodore of the Army Sailing Association, and Major Bernie Fowler, Secretary of the Army Sailing Association (both Andy and Bernie are highly experience RYA Yachtmasters). Thanks to the good offices of Andy Hadfield we were able to charter the Army's Yacht, Grebe VIII, a very comfortable six berth Hallberg Rassy. Setting off on Friday morning from the Joint Services Adventure Training Sail Centre in Gosport, the crew made a 16 hour crossing to Cherbourg, arriving in the early hours of Saturday morning. Initially the sailing was excellent but as night fell so did the wind and the last stages of the passage were conducted under engine power. Notwithstanding this, it was a challenging crossing due to the traffic in the main shipping channels and the fact that it was conducted largely at night. Following a chance to see a little of Cherbourg and (in true Bowyers tradition) an excellent lunch, we set off in the early evening to make the return journey. Once again the sailing was excellent and dodging the numerous vessels in the Channel, we made superb progress before the wind dropped just before dawn. Breakfast was taken at anchor in Osbourne Bay by the Isle of Wight before we set off for the last leg of the journey back to Gosport. It was an excellent weekend with much experience gained and many lessons learned and we are deeply grateful to Colonel Andy Hadfield and Major Bernie Fowler for their guidance, instruction, help and patience over the weekend. The WCBSC is open to all members of the Company and sails several times a year exporting the Bowyers' principal of conviviality onto the water! If you are interested get in touch with Mark Elliott or the Clerk.

Tony Marinos

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