Reading Offshore

Sailing Club

For all boating enthusiasts
Newsletter       May 2019
A truly impressive flotilla of vessels, including Royal Navy warship HMS Mersey, and over one hundred supporting yachts of all shapes and sizes, joined Sir Robin, and Suhaili in Falmouth Harbour to recreate the historic moment he returned home 50 years ago to scenes of national jubilation, and changed the future of ocean racing forever.
Commodore's Corner
Well, the sun shone for a few days and a Bank Holiday coincided with good weather, but we were soon back to uncertain politics, rain and gales – just as well Osprey’s new sprayhood and cockpit extension – otherwise known as the conservatory -  was fitted a couple of weeks ago.
Commiserations to our Hon Sec and Vice Commodore, Steve, who has had two rallies in succession blown out by gales. Congratulations however to him and other members who upheld the Reading Offshore tradition of getting to the pub and enjoying a sociable meal even without the boats. Let’s hope that the weather gods smile rather more favourably at Lymington in May.
Good news from Belgium via the Cruising Association – the Belgian authorities have extended their “blind eye” policy on red diesel for the coming season. Hopefully that means that the other European nations will not change their hitherto relaxed approach for the time being, so trips across the Channel or North Sea should not attract the risks of fines at least for the remainder of this season. For more detail follow this link
Don’t forget to come along to Sonning on Monday 13 May to share your experiences in getting started in this sailing malarkey and enjoy a bit of a chinwag over a drink or three.

Event Reports
The Chichester Rally
 report by Linda Scottorn
Although the wild, westerly winds were howling as Storm Hannah was approaching, this did not deter those hearty ROSC members who were determined to attend this April rally!  Despite some slight changes and thanks to the quick thinking of Steve Giggs, ten members and three visitors happily participated in a bracing walk around Chichester marina (with those modern houseboats) and a quick cuppa before returning to the warm and sparkling atmosphere of the Crown and Anchor pub in Dell Quay village for a superb meal.  Recounting his past four days of sailing, Skipper Steve told us of his cracking sail down to Poole a few days earlier and the even better one of his return to the Solent.  However, as winds increased substantially by the Saturday, most boat skippers had decided to leave there tugs in harbour and drive to Dell Quay rather than chancing an entrance into Chichester over the bar in a southwesterly!  As the blue skies reappeared though and the sun was setting we all took our chances at photographing the scene.  Rallies are always a great way we can get to know each other while at the same time learn more about sailing. Hats off to Steve Giggs for organising it.  
Report on the talk by Victoria Seabrook
.......  Turn the Tide on Plastic  ......
Report by Linda Scottern

On Monday, 1st April Victoria Seabrook gave us a most interesting presentation. 
Victoria was the producer and director of a Sky News film documentary about the 2017/2018 Volvo Ocean Race boat named, “Turn the Tide on Plastic”.  TTTP teamed up with the Sky Ocean Rescue organisation in order to publicise the campaign for a better public understanding of the serious issue of plastic pollution in our oceans. Scientific equipment was provided and installed on board TTTP.  The crew were suitably trained to use this equipment as well as how to monitor readings and to take samples of ocean water which was in addition to their important responsibilities as crew.   The data was subsequently passed on to selected scientists at the various stops during the race for analysis and publication.
Victoria’s presentation described what went into making this documentary as a producer. She explained the general aspects of Volvo Ocean Race itself together with some facts about the boats in general and the serious risks involved in taking part.  Although Victoria is not a sailor, as producer and director she was responsible for organising the various people who were on board TTTP filming and for editing the hours of film footage that was being created.  Victoria said it was quite a challenge as the project had been given to her after the Volvo race had actually begun and the documentary was expected to be completed before the race ended.  Having been shown a segment of the programme at the end of her presentation, we all agreed Victoria had produced a most excellent documentary on a topic which desperately requires highlighting again and again until something positive can be accomplished to clean up our oceans. 
Britain’s Dee Caffari lead the boat, 'Turn the Tide on Plastic' -- a mixed, youth focused team with a strong sustainability message in the Volvo Ocean Race 2017-18. The team’s aim was to amplify the United Nations Environment’s ‘Clean Seas: Turn the Tide on Plastic’ campaign throughout the eight months of the race, which covered 45,000 nautical miles of racing around the world, taking in 12 Host Cities on six continents. ‘Turn the Tide on Plastic’ finished in sixth place in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race.
Dave's world record breaking See-Saw challenge.
The Seesaw World Record attempt at the old Polehampton School Twyford, masterminded and organised by our own Dave Turner, was a great success with the seesawers bouncing for over 80 hours and so breaking the world record achieved by Dave and another Dave 50 years ago!  Dave was of course ably supported by Lynda who amongst other things kept everyone very well fed, including a proper Sunday lunch for the seesawers!
 A number of ROSC members went along to support the Challenge.  Several had a session on the second seesaw, confirming that it was a very pleasant experience, not unlike gentle sailing.
 Dave would like to thank all the ROSC members who supported the Challenge, some of whom also helped out with a ‘night shift’ to give Dave a short spell of much needed sleep.
There was great publicity for the event with plenty of TV and local radio coverage before, during and after the event. Dave managed to slip in a few ROSC plugs during his interviews and a red ensign flew over the entrance.   But above all the Challenge succeeded beyond expectation in raising awareness for the Polehampton Charity’s project to turn this lovely old school building into a library and community hub for the area.
A contingent of ROSC members met in Twyford in support of Dave's fund raising event for a world record see-sawing challenge.   
Forthcoming Events
Monday May 13th 

“Shared experiences of ROSC members”

An evening of recollections and memories of how members really leant to Sail
Join us to find out about some of our members sailing background and be inspired to sail more or at least be entertained with photos and anecdotes!
When we talk to experienced sailing friends and acquaintances it’s easy forget there must have been a time before they could sail and that they must have learnt to sail somehow.

No one is born a sailor – some start as kids with their parents some later, many start on dinghies, some learn quickly while others take longer or say they have never stopped learning. Whether you are relatively new to sailing or have years of experience, the evening should provide you with an insight of fellow member’s trials and tribulations of mastering sailing skills. If you are still learning then you will get pointers for the way forward based on real experiences.

If you are a long standing member the evening should entertain you and bring back happy memories (and maybe some painful reminders) of when you were learning to sail. Whatever your experience level you will hopefully enjoy hearing about some of our members sailing backgrounds and have a laugh at some of the anecdotes.

PS: If you would like five minutes of fame to tell a tale or two on the evening then Steve Giggs would be pleased to hear from you!  click this link :   Steve Giggs
May 18 - 19th weekend



Evening meal is arranged at the Lymington Town Sailing Club.
 Reply directly to Bernie with your menu choices on the earlier issued email by 29 April.

As LTSC have requested the full amount for the meal as one payment, if you are coming could you please pay £27.50 per head into ROSC’s Bank Account. An earlier emails has the menu but if you need any information please contact Bernie.

Contact Bernie with any questions on this link - Bernie B

The itinerary for the Rally is as follows:
Mid-afternoon early arrivals are welcome to come on board Skippers’ Rhapsody for tea or coffee and cake

18.00    Meet on Skippers’ Rhapsody for a drink
18.50    Walk to LTSC
19.00    Have a drink/enjoy the views from the Bar
19.30    Sit down for dinner
After Dinner:    Coffee on board Skippers’ Rhapsody – for those who are not too exhausted
For those arriving early, there is an interesting market in Lymington on Saturdays (Skippers’ Rhapsody has, many a time, sailed back the next day with the aft cabin full of plants!!)
A previous year Rally set up at Lymington Town Sailing Club


MONDAY 3 JUNE 2019              1900 for 1930 HRS

Let Lynda Turner know that you are attending by
May 20th

Includes barbecue,
accompanying salads
and dessert


Please pay by BACS using this reference: name BBQ19
contact: for other BACS details


Come along to the annual barbecue, masterminded by Dave and Lynda Turner, in the grounds of UTMYC at Sonning.  Always one of the highlights of the year and a great chance to meet up with other ROSC members, swap this season’s sailing stories, and generally unwind in lovely surroundings with great barbecue food.
Sailing on the Solent
Thoughts by Jan Hern
This was the first time Paul and Jan had sailed in The Solent,
Our first sail on The Solent with skipper Steve and first mate David Giggs, Paul & Jan Hearn as crew on Pentangle II.
Leaving Reading at 10am traffic was good, arrived at Shamrock Quay about midday. Parked up, the marina office was very helpful and understanding as we were using our 7m motorhome and at no cost. We had some lunch while waiting to hear where Steve was, he and David were in the cafe having an all day breakfast.
After introductions we carried our kit from motorhome to the boat.
Friday 15th
We had our Safety briefing, Steve being very clear and concise then David talked through the bow, stern and spring lines. Like Steve, Jan usually helmed so she wasn’t used to untying, tidying the lines and then the fenders had to be collected up, whew! Motoring under the River Itchen bridge Steve gave Paul the helm to get the feel of the boat. Then Jan had the helm and after a swift 360’ she stayed at the helm, which she enjoyed and even more so when Steve decided to raise the sails, reefed as wind was blowing Force 5. Jan nudged Pentangle just off the wind and kept her steady while Steve and David discussed the In-mast furling and whether the ratchet was preventing the sail appearing. David went on deck to check the ratchet and confirmed that Steve was using the correct line. We discussed how to remember this, Jan came up with - left out, right in. Left and out having a ‘t’ and right and in had ‘i’ in both.
With Paul’s help we had both main and genoa sails reefed and we were sailing, yay. Turning off the engine was a challenge as Jan had to put her hand through the wheel, that was against all Paul & Jan had learned. A difficult manoeuvre ...
Jan helmed south to Southampton Water, keeping to the left of shipping. At the Hamble mouth we dropped the sails and Steve took the helm. Then we motored back the way we had sailed following buoys at the river mouth. Jan became very confused as she hadn’t studied the chart! We skirted buoys and watched the depth then up the Hamble river to Port Hamble Marina. Another first for Paul & Jan.
Jan was asked to jump ship, no, to sit at the gate with a stern line and jump down onto the pontoon, with her short legs and baggy over-trousers she managed successfully to hold the rope round the cleat.
Yet another first for Jan. All safely moored.
We had arrived about 5.30 and when everything was ship-shape we walked into Hamble village for a meal. The first pub was crowded and David was disappointed as he wanted to down a Doombar. We found another and enjoyed a local ale with our meal. A lovely village........We slept being rocked as the wind was increasing.

Saturday 16th
A good place to be while moored up with F9 gusts! The forecast decided for us and we stayed marina bound. Paul and Jan went off for a circular walk, Steve and David walked to Hamble point to retrieve Steve’s car, take David to the bus & train station so he could get home before Sunday morning.           Goodbye David great meeting and sailing with you.
Relaxed after lunch on board and listened to the wind howling and whistling around the Marina.
The highest wind was 41kts so we drove to Hasler Marina, a 30 minutes journey, thanks Steve as you won’t be imbibing so much.     We had pre-dinner drinks with other ROSC sailers on Skipper’s Rhapsody and a great way to get to know other club members. Linda and Jan demolished bottle of white wine between them. Then we had a great meal at Hasler Marina.  Paul and Jan really loved to hear other sailors stories on and off the water, thank you to all. Steve drove us back and we slept with winds dying down to a quiet night.

Sunday 17th
Further briefing by Steve as Jan usually helmed and not often tied up or untied, or cleared the fenders. We were going to sail to Cowes and moor up at Folleys Inn on the Medina river. Jan spent a while making a detailed passage plan then discovered the plan was to sail west of the channel, hers was to the east! Too much detail too. At least the process was a lesson on how to plan using buoys which Paul and Jan hadn’t done since Day skipper course 14 years ago. Sailing the med is our preference, Steve was a great instructor on pilotage.
After checking we were ship shape and engine good we successfully slipped our mooring.
Jan helmed while the boys set the genoa then main sail. A few ships and ferries were around but tacked to avoid them on 2 occasions keeping an eye on depths. Paul then helmed, depths all good, one tack good taking us forward but the other tack took us almost back to where we started. Swapping again Jan helmed as boys took sails down. We had to untangle the genoa as it had twisted with the forestay and then the sheet wrapped itself round the guard rail. Then Steve motored us up the Medina passing the chain ferry safely moored.
No room on the inn pontoon so we moored fairly easily on the pontoon in the middle of the river. Jan again sat ready to slip off with the stern line BUT the rope was unravelling from the boat cleat! Jan blamed the rope as it had lost its core to stay tied, Steve rescued the day by quickly tying up and Jan sighed with relief.
Steve tried to radio in and telephone then again at 4.30pm, no water taxi so no inn meal tonight. There were visitors berths in Shepherds Marina but looking in the cupboards we discovered enough food to make a pasta meal! So we decided to stay.  Paul cooked.
Jan noticed that at 7pm there was darkness where the Inn was so may have not been opened anyway!
Monday 18th
After a quiet night, the wind dropping there was sunshine, the wind however kept the temperature down, forecast was 3 deg overnight, Steve felt chilly.  After breakfast, finishing off cereal and toast, Jan noticed the Folley Inn had scaffolding and workmen around so it was closed. We were glad not to have gone over to raft against another boat!
The wind had changed to NW which meant the sail back to Shamrock Quay from the medina was motoring. The wind was lower but colder!   No problems on the way back, keeping to the west of zone area, watched sail boats, ferries and fishing boats. Headed for the bridge and the Marina. Steve decided to back in so we were prepared with fenders, low on starboard higher on port. We turned beautifully into the slot, Paul and Jan slipping off the boat to wrap lines around cleats pulling lines gently and Pentangle settled nicely into her berth.
We left Pentangle clean and tidy, took Steve to his car at Hamble Marina and we headed off west for a couple of days away before returning home.
Scottorn’s win the booby prize at RSC Pink Day

By leading the field for the first time round the 5 buoyed course, the Scottorn’s thought they had the race in the bag at Reading Sailing Clubs Pink Day on Sat 11th April.
However, by the time the clock had wound down and being disqualified 3 times for rearranging the course and several fouls, their position was last!

John did go on bended knee to apologise to OOD Monica and Linda accepted the special trophy as a token of encouragement after their very first race.⛵️

                  ‘Know the course’                                             Linda in W1002 crossing the start line
US-based Sharrow Engineering has been granted a UK patent for its high efficiency propeller design.

The new design propeller, which is yet to find a UK dealer, is suitable for use in a range of recreational visits such as yachts and motorboats and by larger commercial vessels. The company claims the propeller solves the problem of rotary propulsion. Tip cavitation and vortices have been either eliminated or significantly reduced.
Over the past six years, Sharrow Engineering has anaylsed testing data collected at the University of Michigan's Marine Hydrodynamics Laboratory and implemented its own in-water testing programme using manned vessels in lakes, rivers and at sea. Results show that the propeller is 9 - 15% more efficient than the industry standard design with a higher top-end speed and a 17% reduction in torque when accelerating.
The propeller is attached in the same way that a standard propeller is attached and there are no major mechanical changes needed in order to incorporate it on to a vessel.
Lymington Town Sailing Club AGM extract
ROSC Photo Competition 2019
As the 2019 sailing season gets underway the Committee are pleased to launch the Reading Offshore Sailing Club Photo Competition.

If you manage to take a great photograph of any on the water sailing activity or club event we would love to see it! There is no formal submission date as long as the pictures are available for the AGM on the 4th November where we will vote on the best picture of 2019!

Pictures can be submitted by email to or via our WhatsApp group. If you have any questions please let Steve Giggs know.

Dredged Eastern Channel opens in Cowes Harbour

29 March 2019

New navigation channel to bring improvements to harbour safety
Small craft, up to 20m in length, approaching from or departing to the north or east can now use the Cowes Harbour Eastern Channel and avoid the busy main harbour entrance, thereby de-conflicting small craft from the larger commercial vessels. The 35 metre wide Eastern Channel is dredged to 2.25 metres below chart datum, therefore the minimum depth of water in the Channel is equal to the height of tide plus 2.25 metres. Small craft leaving the Eastern Channel when proceeding into the Inner Fairway should give way to vessels in the Inner Fairway and converge with caution as this area, with the East Cowes Red Funnel Ferry Terminal to the south, may become extremely busy, particularly during the summer months.
Sailor's salute Sir Robin on 50 year anniversary of Golden Globe victory
by Clipper Round the World........ 22 April
Britain's leading sailors are paying tribute to Sir Robin Knox-Johnston today on the 50th anniversary of the date, 22 April 1969, that he entered history books as the first person to ever sail solo, non-stop around the world.

Of the nine people who set out in quest of becoming the first to circumnavigate solo, non-stop, the sailing equivalent of climbing Mount Everest, Sir Robin was the only one to complete the journey
"To me, Sir Robin is an iconic figure and one of the greatest sailors to ever set foot in a boat." Said Sir Ben Ainslie, Britain's most decorated Olympic sailor, during filming for a documentary about the achievement, which took place in the same year of the first moon landing.
Sir Ben added: "The Golden Globe and Sir Robin Knox Johnston's amazing triumph against the rest of the world, winning for Britain, was an amazing feat of seamanship and something that will never be forgotten."
Following 1969, Robin went on to claim numerous honours, including the inaugural entry into the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Hall of Fame. He has been named Yachtsman of the Year an unprecedented four times by the Royal Yachting Association, set a record for the fastest circumnavigation with Sir Peter Blake in 1994, for which they were awarded the Trophée Jules Verne, and was knighted by the Queen in recognition of his service to sailing. In 2006, aged 67, he also set a new record for being the oldest yachtsman to sail solo around the world, in the Velux 5 Oceans Race.
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We have regular meetings the first Monday of the month at the Upper Thames Motor & Yacht Club (UTMYC) in Sonning. If you would like more information on any aspect head to our website or if you would like to discuss any point with a committee member about our sailing club or visiting us on a Monday to say hello, click here to email Linda, our publicity officer, who will be happy to answer any questions.
ROSC was established in 1971and continues with regular meetings. You don't have to own a boat as many rallies are available by land, meals in a local hostillery are arranged with pre-meal drinks often on one of the attending boats.
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