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 Programme Spring 2020

Talks begin at 8.15pm, bar and coffee open from 7.30pm

Wednesday January 9th

Paddington: Motorboating in Europe

James and Carol Littlewood

Having sailed the coastline from the Norwegian Arctic Circle to La Rochelle, James and Carol decided to visit the "inside". In 2014 they started to explore the gutters of France, the ditches of Belgium, the canals of the Netherlands and the big waterways of Germany.  James will talk about differences between "outside and inside", will compare locks with crocodiles and will give a us a glimpse of French champagne country and the German Mecklenburg Lakes.  More details

Wednesday January 15th

Seabatical - a Caribbean adventure at 30 something

Nick and Roxanne Creak

In 2018 Nick and Roxy bought a 1989 40ft Westerly in Trinidad in the hope of being able to sail to Puerto Rico and back for the Caribbean honeymoon of a lifetime.  Armed with limited experience and a can do attitude they have recently returned with a smile on their faces and many stories to tell.   More details

Wednesday January 22nd

In the Footsteps of Shackleton

Martin Thomas

In 1915 Shackleton’s ship, the Endurance, was crushed in the ice of the Weddell Sea and sank. After drifting on the ice for 15 months, he and his men reached the uninhabited Elephant Island. He then set out on one of the most hazardous small boat journeys of all time and eventually reached South Georgia. Martin will describe his own adventure, sailing the Southern Ocean to South Georgia and then following Shackleton’s route across the mountains, the Shackleton Traverse.   More details

Wednesday January 29th

From Pushing Paper to Planing Planks

Nigel Morris

For 30 years, Nigel Morris was a project manager working around the world; then on 20 August 2018 he jumped ship and decided to become a boat builder.  He spent 40 exciting and challenging weeks at the Boat Building Academy in Lyme Regis, learning woodwork and eventually building his own 21 foot boat in the final weeks of the course.  He is now practising his newly acquired skills on renovating a Dunkirk Little Ship.  More details
Wednesday February 5th

Sailing Small Boats to the Arctic

Alasdair Flint  

Alasdair Flint is the long-time owner of a 26ft wooden yacht called Sumara. He will talk about his penchant for sailing north to the Arctic. The talk will focus on his 2011 expedition to Jan Mayen to climb the world’s most northerly volcano but will also briefly cover his earlier sail to Spitsbergen and his recent trip to East Greenland with Will Stirling.  Alasdair will attempt to explain how careful planning, good kit and the right attitude can help mitigate some of the risks.  More details

Wednesday February 12th

Warrant Officer 1 Mick Gentry, Royal Navy

Mick Gentry

Mick has served for 43 years in the Royal Navy, which included 3 years Service in Her Majesty’s Royal Yacht Britannia from 1995 through to decommissioning in Dec 1997. Hear how the Royal Yacht was organised, what duty as a Royal Yachtsman entailed, and what life was like onboard. Mick will tell you of events that you will not have heard before and explain the uniqueness of Britannia in every detail.  More details

(Alastair Fischbacher talk has been postponed)

Wednesday February 19th

Linnea 360: a UK Circumnavigation

Alison Milne and Chris Smith

No two sailing trips around the UK are the same; in the summer of 2017 Chris and Alison, newly retired, set off in their Malo 37 Linnea on what was, for them, a voyage of discovery. As well as recounting their story, they will share some tips on what worked for them in both the planning and execution of the trip and will hopefully inspire some in the audience to take the plunge with this UK sailors' rite of passage.  More details

Wednesday February 26th

Sailing Last Summer and Other Tales

Talks from GXSA Members

With so many talks from visiting speakers about their accomplishments, we might overlook the achievements and adventures of our own members. We shall hear about some of their impressive sailing exploits in the Baltic, Netherlands, France, Spain, Portugal, BVIs, Bermuda and Azores and other entertaining stories. Visitors welcome, as usual. More details

Wednesday March 4th

The Golden Globe Race

Barry Pickthall

Barry Pickthall is a yachting journalist and photographer who has been covering international sailing events for over forty years. A former boat builder and naval architect, he was yachting correspondent of The Times for many years and is currently the Golden Globe Race Media Coordinator. He will tell us about the Golden Globe Race past, present and future.  More details

Wednesday March 11th

AGM, followed by 

Review of the Year and a look forward to the coming sailing season and events.