The Steers help to launch 52 yachts in a day

Tamesis members Tony and Leonie Steer, who sailed round Britain last year in their yacht Shen Shui, helped to launch their boat and 51 others after the winter layup at Gosport on Saturday 1 April.  This is Leonie’s account of a a very busy day:

“At 7.30 am three very large cranes arrived at our Gosport Club to launch 52 yachts. The first crane lifts the yacht from its cradle in the overflow car park and puts it on a low loader. The low loader transports the boat to a second crane that lifts the boat off and down into the sea alongside a launch pontoon. A third crane lifts the mast from a cradle in the main car park down into the yacht. When the mast is fitted the yacht moves off to its marina berth. Work teams are divided into Ashore and Pontoon parties, then sub divided into yard, hull and masts ashore and afloat. Each section has a yellow helmet in overall charge. For the past three years I have been a ‘Mast Marshall’ responsible for finding the mast stored around the overflow car park (also putting them away at lift-out) and getting it transported by my team of blue helmets to trestles in the main car park. I then locate the owner and ensure that the mast is prepared – spreaders, radar and rigging are all fitted back on ready to marry up with the boat. I try to be six masts ahead so that the mast is ready for the boat and we don’t keep anyone waiting. Tony was responsible for tying the top of the mast to the hoist so that it travelled vertically but could still be undone when fitted. If the mast swung horizontally someone could be injured badly. If we can launch 52 boats before 5.30 pm we save on hiring the three cranes for a second day. We finished just in time! The club ordered 90 fish and chip suppers for the workforce as everyone was too tired to cook!”

Comments

  1. John Dunkley

    Leonie added
    “I spent last weekend sanding and painting the forecabin whilst Tony serviced the engine, found a leak in the stern gland and a loose coupling in the steering. So good to have dry sunny weather for jobs.

    We plan a shake down cruise next week”.