Tamesis Club

Shen Shui sails to Dartmouth

Tony and Leonie Steer sailed from the Solent to Dartmouth in their yacht Shen Shui on 22 May. Leonie reports “We arrived in Dartmouth after a lovely 9 hour downwind crossing of Lyme Bay, often surfing at 7 knots. Oscar (the ship’s cat) is fine.”

On 25 May she added that they hoped to sail on to Newton Ferrers to visit friends.

On Saturday 3 June Leonie reported “It was a bit misty around Start Point but cleared enough for Oscar to check the transit into Newton Ferries.  He was very impressed that Falmouth was dressed all over to welcome him in! We are tucked up here.”

Teddington Scouts visit Tamesis for boat training

On Thursday 25 May Tamesis Club welcomed members and officers of the 1st Teddington Scout Group.
After a brief explanation of the basics of sailing the group were given a detailed safety briefing then fitted with buoyancy aids.
This was followed by a quick “on shore” demonstration of boat handling.
The visitors were then split up between those who wished to take part in the normal Thursday race in a National 18 or to get further instruction with an RYA instructor in a Wayfarer or Laser 2000.
Those opting for instruction went on a cruise up river to Kingston Bridge gaining experience in sail setting and helming.
The weather could not have been better, although the wind was particularly fickle.
On returning to the club the visitors were eager to jump into the river whilst the instructors put the boats away before enjoying a well deserved pint.
The visitors seemed to have enjoyed the experience and the instructors gained useful experience dealing with a large and high spirited group.
Tamesis is an RYA approved training centre offering a variety of courses for all ages and experience and has recently added Start Racing to its extensive range of courses.
The club welcomes new members whether experienced sailors or absolute beginners.

Rob and Milly Wilder second at Thames Merlin open

Thames Sailing Club hosted a Merlin Open meeting on Sunday 14 May which is part of the Thames Series in which visitors from Tamesis, Hampton & Fishers Green SC joined the locals. 
A decent breeze allowed for a beat up towards Thames Ditton Marina and a run back downstream to a leeward mark just off Raven’s Ait. 
Rob & Milly were leading the first race when on the beat a big gust came and knocked them flat. They didn’t go over but managed to take in a fair bit of water, letting John & Livvy Bell into the lead, but they still finished second.
The second race was held back to back in similar conditions, with John and Livvy & Rob and Milly breaking away from he rest of the fleet. John managed to win having the edge on upwind wind speed.  
The third race started in less breeze, which seemed to build through the race. Rob and Milly lead from start to finish. 
!st 1222 John & Livvy Bell – Hampton SC
2nd 1097 Rob Wilder & Milly Chong-Wilder – Tamesis Club
3rd 1742 Jon & Annabel Steward – Fishers Green SC

Push the Boat Out day a great success

Video above by Kathrin Gerber



More than 100 sailing enthusiasts took part in Tamesis Club’s Push the Boat Out day on Saturday 13 May.  The RYA sponsored event was blessed by near perfect conditions with a light westerly wind and warm sunshine marred by occasional spots of rain from passing clouds.

Experienced helmsmen took newcomers sailing in boats of many sizes including the latest design National 18, a Wayfarer, Merlin Rockets, Lasers, Mirrors and Toppers.  They were supervised by three of the club’s safety boats which were occasionally called on to rescue several over enthusiastic teenagers who capsized or fell overboard.  Most were wearing wet suits and the wearing of lifejackets was compulsory.

About 40 of the participants were new to sailing and all seemed to be enjoying themselves. The team on the barbecue provided lunch for all, with a selection of dishes, and many ate their food sitting at tables on the lawn or on the bench seats alongside the river, as they watched the sailing.

Guests were welcomed by the registration team along with many other volunteers.

The Commodore, Carolyne Vines thanked everyone in the following e mail:

Dear all

I just wanted to thank everyone for their massive support today at the Push the Boat Out open day, including the RYA for their inspiration, media support and excellent publicity materials.  They were responsible for the marvellous banners at the end of Trowlock Way, and the one on the river side of the clubhouse.

We had at least 60 visitors registering, and about 50 going out on the water.  The club was packed with people having a great time on and off the water.  We had 6 families joining today, which is really good.  There are others who are either enrolling other family members, or just thinking about it.  We will have a good number of students for Eric Finlayson.

I can’t possibly name all the helpers, so I won’t even try.  They encompass the leafleters, those who spread the word by electronic means and by just telling friends, and relatives, the registration desk, chat up team, beach masters, bbq and kitchen team, clothing team, photographers, boatmen in the launch and dories, and of course all the helms who took visitors out, either in club boats, or their own boat, and rigged and derigged boats, cleaned up the hard, mowed the grass, put the banners up, did the artwork for the leaflets, did the report for the website and generally helped in ways I wasn’t aware of.

The visitors were all impressed by our friendliness.  I was, as always, impressed by members’ enthusiasm, cooperation, and hard work.

The fantastic bbq served about 115 – meals – amazing, they kept going long after  2.30

Lots of people were taking photos and videos.  I will be doing a report for the RYA, and I will need a variety.  Please could you send them to me at cvines6285@aol.com

Thank you everyone

Carolyne Vines



Peter Mason fascinates with talk on the first ‘Victory’

On Thursday 6th April, Peter Mason did a fascinating talk on the sinking of the 1737 version of ‘Victory’ which sank in the Channel in a violent storm in 1744. Peter is involved with Greenwich University and the National Maritime Museum in research into the engineering design of historic naval vessels.
The 18th Century was the Age of Enlightenment, which heralded the start of modern scientific engineering. This period produced conflict between early enthusiasts for new “scientific” designs and more cautious traditional thinkers who could see the dangers in untested innovation.  Early adopters of a new “scientific” approach were the French who were seeking a competitive advantage. In fact, the “science” of the time could only help inform stability, which was not actually a problem for such ships, and the understanding of fluid drag on hulls, aerodynamic driving forces on sails and structural behaviour came much later.  Despite in-period criticism, the design of this Victory was not that different from its famous, and successful, successor in Portsmouth, the design of which was actually influenced somewhat by French naval architecture. That said, it was built with an unusual extra row of stern windows much closer to the water than was usual. Maybe that was not a wise design decision.
Peter used drawings and records from the builders to illustrate his talk.
Thanks also go to Nicky Johnson for overall organisation and to Rhi, Jo and Chloe for producing a lovely meal.


Death of Angela Norris

Angela Norris, a Tamesis member for many years, passed peacefully away in the Princess Alice Hospice, Esher, on Friday 5 May.  Her family were by her side.  She was 88.

More than 70 friends and family attended the funeral at the Sacred Heart Church, Teddington on Tuesday 30 May, followed by a reception at Tamesis Club.

Angela was an enthusiastic member of the Tamesis Bridge Group, and in her younger days crewed in Merlins and for members of the Offshore Group.

Her late husband, Percy, was a diplomat and she travelled the world with him until he was  tragically assassinated in Bombay.  She was supported by the Foreign Office for the rest of her life and worked  for a time with the Information Ministry, assisting foreign journalists on their visits to the UK.

Donations in memory of Angela should be made to the Princess Alice Hospice, Esher.