October 9th

Circle Line: Around London in a small boat – Steffan Meyric Hughes

In 2009, Steffan sailed and rowed a dinghy around London, writing an entertaining and best-selling book about his experiences in 2012. Hear Steffan talk about this voyage, and some of the other adventures and mishaps in eight years of yachting journalism.

Wed 9th Oct 2013 : Steffan Meyric Hughes

October 16th

Portsmouth and Southampton: a maritime contrast
Graham Horn

Graham Horn explores the history of merchant port Southampton and premier Naval base Portsmouth, delves into their rivalries and reveals why they came to take on such different roles. Whether it is shipbuilding, trade, defence or football, Portsmouth and Southampton have had a long rivalry. Some 2,000 years in fact. Blue badge Guide Graham will get you to think of the area in a new light when next sailing in the Solent.

Wed 16 Oct 2013 : Graham Horn

October 23rd

A Life Under and Over the Waves – 
Stephen Golliker

Growing up in South Africa sailing dinghies, Stephen has since sailed in submarines for the South African navy, sailed through time on a historical re-enactment in the Bartolomeu Dias, sailed on the Olympics first 49er racing circuit and covered developments in ocean racing.

Wed 23 Oct 2013 : Stephen Golliker

October 30th

Cruising to the Outer Hebrides – 
Roger Oliver

Sailing author and contributor to PBO, Roger has written valuable guides to sailing around the UK. Here he describes part of a recent cruise, focussing on the east of Ireland, via Tobermory to Castle Bay in Barra and to Lewis in the Outer Hebrides.

November 6th

U-boats, Giant Waves and Climate Change –
Isabel Ansorge

A return visit by Dr Ansorge (University of Cape Town) reporting on the brand new Agulhas II research vessel and her Antarctic trials. Isabel will describe new insights into unusual ocean currents, giant waves along the African coasts and climate change developments.

November 13th

All about Ropes – Justin Jones

Justin Jones is Marine Manager at English Braids and will tell us about the history of the company, different types of ropes and how they are made. The evening will conclude with entertaining demonstrations of various types of rope splicing.

November 20th

Rum, Sodomy and the Lash – Martin Thomas

Accomplished sailor, surgeon and former OCC Commodore, Martin Thomas describes naval traditions and medicine in the age of sail. Scurvy, amputation, surgery at sea, the press gang and the death of Nelson. Not for the squeamish but certainly an interesting evening...

November 27th

Caribbean Cruising without a budget – 
John Gorrie

GXSA member John reports on the pleasures of sailing last winter on the ‘Wind Star’ a four-masted 110m sailing yacht. Large beds, flat-screen TV, gourmet cuisine, casino, library, pool and hot tub - all sounds a bit different from our normal GXSA rallies but good to learn how the other half live.

December 4th

Sailing and boat maintenance - Vyv Cox

Vyv Cox is a mechanical engineer, metallurgist, contributor to Yachting Monthly and keen photographer, who has sailed extensively in cruising yachts. Vyv will share his expertise on yacht maintenance and engineering problems, and describe his cruising in the Mediterranean.

December 11th

Cast Off for Christmas

More entertaining stories from members about their year’s sailing experiences plus mince pies and seasonal refreshments.

Spring 2007

The Baltic via the Waddenzee and Wattfahrwassers

Club members Reg & Chris Hadwen tell of sailing their Southerly 110 through the drying channels of the Frisian and Friesian Islands on their way to the Baltic.

Jester Challenge - Transatlantic Race

Club member John Apps will share his coastal and ocean sailing experiences including weather prediction methods and his challenges in Glayva, a UFO27, during the 2006 single-handed race from which 80% of the boats retired due to bad weather.

Roscoff to La Rochelle

Club members Phil & Jill Snowden sailed to La Rochelle in 2004 intending to return in 2005. They are still there and will show us some of the delights of Western France.

Jane Slade: Inspiration for Daphne du Maurier's first novel

Helen Doe, maritime historian, author and lecturer, tells the truth behind the fiction about three generations of seafarers and shipbuilders who were dominated by one remarkable woman and her ship.

The Cruising Association Victory Rally around Britain

Douglas Addison talks about his part solo sail round Britain in his 31 ft. ketch in the Cruising Association 2005 Victory Rally, in the 200th anniversary year of Trafalgar.

Sailing with Gipsy Moth IV on the East Coast of Australia

Jeremy Graham will tell of his experiences as a watch leader for a few weeks on Gipsy Moth IV in summer 2006 with a crew of disadvantaged children.

A Cruise to the Magical Fjords of Norway

Club member Peter Poole sails from Birdham via Lowestoft, returning via Orkney, West Scotland and Ireland - all in six weeks and only two gales.

Mutiny, Murder & Mayhem: the 1797 Spithead Mutiny

Dr Ann Coats, expert on eighteenth century naval history tells of the Mutiny borne out of a grievance that naval seamen had not had a pay rise for 144 years.

In the Wake of Ernest Shackleton

After the loss of the Endeavour, Shackleton set off from Elephant Island to seek help in a converted whaler, James Caird. Trevor Potts built a replica of the James Caird and sailed it from Elephant Island to South Georgia. He tells the story of the preparations and the voyage.

AGM - Followed by a talk by Club member Ken Moss

An East coast cruise from the Deben to Orkney and back - sometimes single-handed.

Annual Dinner - Datchet Water Sailing Club

Roger Taylor, South Pacific tall ships shipwreck survivor, is our after dinner speaker.

Spring 2008

The Rise and Fall of Westerly Boatbuilding

Association member Hazel Powell, editor of 'The Westerly Story', discusses the company's growth and financial failure. What made it so successful? And why did it collapse? These and other questions will be discussed along with the designers and, of course, the boats.

Medical Emergencies at Sea

Martin Thomas M.S., F.R.C.S. Commodore of the Ocean Cruising Club and Atlantic Yachtsman extraordinaire, outlines handling medical emergencies at sea - a timely reminder that all may not go to plan!

Further adventures of ‘Cresswell Jenny’ in Turkey and Greece

Members Karin Wilkinson & Andrew Walker return to tell of their trip from Marmaris to Kos, zig zagging between Turkey and the Greek islands taking in Finike, Rhodes, Knidos, Kusadasi and Samos.

JourneyMaker 5. Tilman Trophy Winner - 3 Peaks Race

Chris Jones and Louise Makin share their adventures in the 2007 race, one of the toughest on record with gale force winds in the Irish Sea, sailing 400 miles along the west coast of Great Britain with ascents of the highest peaks in Wales, England and Scotland

Building and cruising a modern gaffer

Stephen Akester will describe the build and some of the unique features of his modern gaffer, Alice, and share the experience of cruising in her.

Atlantic Crossing

Club member John Apps returns by popular request to tell of his adventures completing his Atlantic crossing to gain third place in the Jester Challenge race he entered in 2006

Cruising in the “Golden Years” after racing

Cliff Norbury, past racing champion, Olympic Team manager, RORC racer, sailing administrator, MD of Proctor and now well traveled cruiser recalls pottering on the Hamble in 1942 through to cruising in his almost self-built Starlight 39 ‘Zest’.

I'm not waving it, I'm drying it - Sailing in the Gulf

Race management is not all doom and gloom, it has its lighter moments as well. RYA Race Officers Peter and Carol-Anne Pocock have many a tale to tell about their experiences both in the UK and abroad. Come along to find out exactly who was drying what.

AGM - followed by Memories of the Falklands War

Captain N J Tobin DSC MA Royal Navy will give an illustrated talk on his period in command of HMS Antelope during the Falklands war and his personal recollections of the sinking of his ship as a result of enemy air attack.

Annual Dinner at Dachet Water Sailing Club


Spring 2009

The Minimum Boat - Sam Llewellyn

Sam Llewellyn has written many sailing thrillers. His PBO column The Minimum Boat advocates a back-to-basics style of sailing well adapted to the times. He is currently working on the Dazed Kipper Manual, a work of instruction that he describes as 'the blind leading the blind.' !

Dances with Whales and Weather - John Apps

Club member John Apps describes large items he met when he took part in the Jester Azores Challenge in 2008 including Sperm Whales, Ultra Large Crude Carriers and Mountains. He will also describe the progress of a 'typical' ocean storm from first sign of its approach until it's all over.

Sailing in the Caribbean - Richard Snell and Martin Alexander

Following five charter yacht holidays in the island groups of the British Virgin Islands, St Vincent/Mustique/Grenadines, St Maarten/ St Barts/Anguilla and the Abacos, club members Richard Snell and Martin Alexander will highlight aspects, good and not so good, of chartering, and navigation and key anchorages in these areas.

Classic Yachts through the Camera Lens - Kathy Mansfield.

Professional marine photographer Kathy returns with stunning images from the 2007 Celebration of the Centenary of the Metre Class which spawned such impressive yachts as the Americas Cup Boats.

A Fleeting View of the Black Sea - Doreen and Archie Annan.

Hon Club members Doreen and Archie recount with photos their experiences and curious incidents during preparation of their yachtmens' pilot 'Cruise the Black Sea'.

Meandering through the Midi - Don and Jacky Wark

Don & Jacky, Sailing Today contributors, took the lazy way from Honfleur to the Med in their 29ft Snapdragon then on to Biscay along the Midi & Garonne canals. They will share this relaxing but fascinating experience.

Saturday Special - Boat Electrics
A Day with Art Butler

Art is the owner and "hands-on" specialist of a yacht electrics and electronics company based on the East Coast. He will bring us right up to date on current issues and give some guidance on choosing equipment as well as doing our own installation, fault finding, wiring maintenance and repairs.

Overlord - Bob Hazell

Past Commodore of the Offshore Cruising Club Bob Hazell outlines the history of Windfall Yachts and illustrates some of "Overlord's" past cruises and future sailing plans.

A Passion for the Sea - Jimmy Cornell

In the last 35 years, Jimmy has sailed 200,000 miles, including 3 circumnavigations and 2 voyages to Antarctica. He will talk about planning an offshore voyage: to the Med, across the Atlantic or right round the world, with a detour to Antarctica.

Holly’s circumnavigation of Britain in 1994 - Peter Poole

Member Peter Poole set off in June with the intention of seeing as much as possible. Holly, his Nicholson 32, went round Britain including most of Orkney in 11 weeks with mainly good weather, lots of wonderful experiences and meeting many interesting people.

AGM - followed by Cruising to Hell and Back - Rod Paton

Rod Paton describes where things went badly wrong on cruises in the Baltic and across the Atlantic - and tries to draw sensible conclusions.

Annual Dinner at Beaconsfield Golf Club


Spring 2010

Quyvers Travels - John Andrews and Freda Haylet

Adventures on a voyage from Grenada via the Panama Canal, Pacific Islands to New Zealand. Long distance cruising, ports of call and interesting characters met on the way.

Voyages to New Zealand - Melville Errington

The golden era of British Maritime life aboard the liners to New Zealand, including the challenges, both serious and amusing, of keeping engines running for five months.

Olympic Sailing, Qingdao 2008 to Portland 2012 - Dick Batt

Dick Batt (Batt Sails, Bosham), Chief Measurer for Olympic Sailing who serves on many National and International bodies, tells us what goes on behind the scenes.

Classic Yachts through the camera lens - Kathy Mansfield

Professional photographer Kathy shows us stunning images of Meter Class yachts, from their Centenary Celebration. The Meter Class lead to the Americas Cup boats.

RYA First Aid Course at Hedgerley Village Hall

Peter and Carol Pocock with hands on practice on dummies.

Oceanography of the Southern Ocean - Dr Isabelle Ansorge

From voyages on research ships in 90 knot winds and 30 metre waves, Dr Ansorge describes the Southern Ocean and its profound effect on world climate.

The Merchant Navy in the Battle for the North Atlantic 
Richard Woodman

Richard Woodman – Trinity House Elder, Novelist, Master Mariner, Naval Historian – describes the Merchant Navy’s role in this vital struggle from 1939 to 1943.

The Around the World Yacht Race - David Cusworth, Clipper Ventures

Learn how anyone, even if they have never stepped on a boat before, can join the adventure and circumnavigate the world under sail in an eleven month long marathon.

Italian Connection, from Malta to Nice 
Bernie Smallman and John Dawson

John and Bernie tell of their trip in Burnadebt to get a new mast. They sailed from Malta to France, visiting Sicily, Vulcano, Stromboli, Naples, finishing in Monaco and Nice

Experiences as a Yachtmaster Instructor
Duncan Wells

GXSA member Duncan Wells recounts his experiences when sailing home from Brittany with an inexperienced crew. He will also give an amusing view of his recovery from his dramatic flares accident.

An Atlantic Short-Circuit 
Tony Firth

Tony covers sailing tactics and equipment, wildlife and cooking on his circuit via the Canaries, Cape Verde Islands and the Azores.