Wednesday 25th February

Simon Fraser

The Grand Tour          

How Simon took his 43ft Hallberg Rassy from Chatham to Denmark through the inland waterways of Belgium and the Netherlands, all with the mast up. An enjoyable journey through picturesque towns of Bruges, Ghent, Brussels and Antwerp.  Over 1000 miles through the waterways of Europe to the Baltic via Nordeney and the Kiel and Eider Canals.

Wednesday 4th March

Ken Endean

Four Men in a Boat          

The story of some remarkable yachting in peace and war. Ken Endean has published books and written for the yachting press for many years and he is also interested in maritime history. This talk presents a fascinating true story with the action shifting from sailing to all-out war and back again.

21st October 2015

Colin van Geffen

Flying Boats of Southampton


Flying boats were in use for less than sixty years, starting soon after the Wright brothers’ first controlled powered flight in 1903 until the late 1950s with the advent of the jet airliner. Throughout this time Southampton has played an important part in this story of flying development. Flying boats opened up the furthest reaches of the British Empire by crossing oceans and continents, reducing the transit time for passengers and mail to Australia from six weeks to less than eight days. Colin takes us back to the development of flying boats and when Southampton and its Empire flying boats led the world, taking in some triumphs and disasters and bringing the story up to date.


            Wednesday October 7th

Professor Carl Ross

How Deep the Ocean ? - Advances in Submarine Structures


Carl Ross was Deputy Chief of the Project Design Office at Vickers-Armstrongs (Shipbuilders), Barrow-in-Furness. He then moved into academic engineering research at University of Manchester, Teeside and subsequently Portsmouth, where is he now emeritus Professor of Structural Mechanics. He is an innovative thinker and an entertaining speaker.

He made important engineering discoveries on the buckling of ring-stiffened cylinders under external pressure. In 1971 he co-invented the tube stiffened pressure hull, making for greater submarine strength. He also applied a similar approach to food cans, contributing to the ribbed structure we see today in ordinary food tins.

The importance of underwater exploration and challenges in making structures and vessels capable of exploring the great depths will be explained. Opportunities for retrieving vast quantites of methane fuel, for military activity and for applying similar engineering techniques in exploration of other planets will be discussed. Prof Ross has promised that no maths will be presented in the lecture!..

  Wednesday 14th October



Duncan Wells

Single Handed Sailing Techniques


GXSA member Duncan explains bullet-proof techniques for departing and returning to the dock, anchoring with confidence and getting an incapacitated casualty in the water back on board when short-handed, plus many other tips.  His new book  'Stress Free Sailing - Single & Short Handed Techniques' is filled with technical, sailing and safety advice that will give you a greater understanding of your equipment and even save you money....