Tamesis Club

Zoe’s non stop charity walk in Scotland

Zoë Adams gave an excellent talk on her experience of walking with partner Sapna from Glasgow to Edinburgh back in the middle of the heatwave last July.

Zoë had come across walkers in Morden Hall Park who obviously had purpose, and on enquiring found out they were walking for charity.  Zoë loves walking so it seemed a bit of a no brainer to do one herself.  She persuaded Sapna to go with her.  When she found out the British Heart Foundation were organising  a walk in Scotland, this seemed the obvious place to be, as she loves Scotland.

Zoe took us through her training regime, and then the walk itself, with lots of pictures, including some fairly graphic ones of the blisters they suffered.  The star turn was a mole she came across and rescued.

She was full of praise for the organisers and gave us a run down of what the charity does.  They each raised over £1000 from friends, family, colleagues, and £300 from Tamesis members.

Thanks to Jim Green for assisting with the technology

Thanks also to Sophie, Harry and Josefine for feeding and watering us.


Tammy Matters

Dear all

A busy day on Sunday with lots of boats out enjoying the breeze!  Look forward to next week – details below.

We celebrated John Harris’s life in grand style on Tuesday – see the report below.

On Thursday 6th Zoe Adams regaled us with tales of her non stop walk for the British Heart Foundation back in the heatwave of July (remember that?).  A great talk, with contributions from the Scottish wild life.  See the report  below.

Looking ahead:

Christmas Lunch Preparation – morning of Saturday 15 December
We have a full house for our Christmas Lunch this year and will be seating circa 104 people!!  Calling any volunteers who can come along at 10am on Saturday 15th to help lay tables and prep the veg for our Christmas Lunch on Sunday 16th.  It’s always a jovial morning with a great atmosphere and lots of laughs, maybe with a coffee and a mince pie thrown in as well.  Everyone is welcome, it’s a huge help and as they say many hands make light work!  Let Nicky Johnson know if you can help at all on nickyjohnsontamesis@gmail.com.
AND – If anyone has a microwave they could bring to the Club for us to use on Sunday 16th at the Club – please let Nicky know
Sunday 16th December – Christmas Pudding races with a prize for the best decorated boat.  We will have the usual 1030 handicap followed by the class races from 1115.
Followed by:
Christmas Lunch – fully booked to include special visitor.
Wednesday 26th – Boxing Day.  Races from 1115 – no 1030 handicap.  Classes race for the traditional silly prizes.  Come and get rid of those Christmas cobwebs and join in the fun.  There are no staff so we ask you to bring your pot luck contributions to lunch.  The bar will be run by volunteers.
See you soon
Carolyne Vines

In Memory of John Harris

John Harris’ funeral was held yesterday at Mortlake Crematorium and the wake was at the club.  Both the crematorium and clubhouse were absolutely packed.

The service was very moving with tributes from Brian Southcott, Sara, Maddy and Andrew.  Andrew’s and Sara’s tribute are below.

There were family flowers only.  We are asked to make donations to the RNLI.

Dad – A Tribute

I grew up in Kingston-upon-Thames in a house on Park Road, number 98, with two elder siblings Richard and Sara, my mother Sue and father, John.   We have grown as a family since then adding a new generation, but have also lost a few along the way, that is the nature of family life.   Today we mark the passing of my father, John, Grandpa, Grandad John, Dad.

Early memories include greeting him when he came home from work, always great excitement, games in the garden after a short nap, swimming at weekends and bags of crisps and Bovril after Little League on a Saturday, he always came to watch the game as he did for his grandchildren.


Dad was first and foremost a Merlin Rocket sailor, there is a rich family history in the class.   He had great success, but the Champs of 75 was his demon and I often saw him wince at the memory.   But there are other memories; Salcombe was Dad’s favourite place, it is the Harris family holiday and he wouldn’t miss it.   Taking the children out of school to attend the week was considered part of their education!    We have so many friends from those days and really special memories of the times spent on Mill Bay.  There is also a competition during the week and winning  Merlin Week six times were some of Dad’s greatest achievements, my earliest memories were watching him win races, it seemed to be the norm, but actually so much harder than it looks.


Dad, wasn’t just a sailor, he was a true all-round sportsman, he played club level squash at Wimbledon and Mid-Surrey Squash clubs and he was a single figure handicap golfer.  As a father he passed on his love of sport and golf to the whole family, caddying on a Saturday morning was a serious business, but it paid well.


Arcoelectric was his place of work, mysterious and noisy, with machines pumping out plastic moulds, oddball chararcters and the smell of grease, but, I always got the feeling he would rather be doing something else.  He used to renovate boats during his lunch break!


Dad owned many boats, I remember going with him to rescue Passing Cloud, he needed a boat and had the idea that Passing Cloud could be competitive on the river.   The boat at the time was in the racks at Ranelagh and looking a little bit sorry for itself.  We were in the process of extracting her, when a member came along and asked us what we were doing?   “You can’t take that boat away, there are mooring fees to pay”.   “Try and stop me” came the response.

The rest is History, and I think some of the success of the Merlin Rocket vintage scene is down to the example set by Dad in Passing Cloud.  There may have been other enthusiasts renovating boats and sailing them, but Dad showed us that you could win.


The weekend after Dad died Richard and I raced at Tamesis, Berry had lent me Crescendo and Richard was sailing Passing Cloud, it seemed appropriate because even though Dad had great success in Passing Cloud, Crescendo was always his nemesis.   It was a Southerly breeze and the course was set with a leeward mark above the island toward Kingston Bridge.  That is a lovely stretch of river and when the wind is in the right direction not unlike the beat from Yalton, like a conveyer belt if you get it right and a total mystery if you get it wrong, Dad always got it right.


It was a nip and tuck race as it always is, until the moment I managed to sail into a tree, which ended up being a tricky situation trapped between two moored boats, a lee shore and the top of my mast stuck in very sturdy Y shaped branch. Richard sailed away without offering any help.    For me the race was over and after 20 minutes or so once I had extracted myself, I was able to sail out under jib, reached the middle of the stretch and hosted my mainsail and sailed toward the mark, it was a lovely moment; we were all alone, there was a nice breeze and the winter sun was shining I shared it with Dad.

There are many other stories and I welcome you to share your memories with us later.

Andrew Harris

My Dad


Sitting in his chair, fire alight,

Watching Mid Summer Murders or Poirot,

The odd snore here and there,

I will miss my Dad.


At the dining room table,

Dictionary open,

Pen poised,

The Daily Telegraph cross word at the ready,

The cogs are turning,

Perhaps a coffee and bacon sarnie.

I will miss my Dad.


Salcombe, always a place in our hearts,

Merlin, Town and Sailing Regatta,

Old wooden clinker motor boats,

Wind the handle to start.

Spot the Bloomer, gave some laughs.

And crabbing on the pontoons was always a big part.

But the dam busting on Millbay, will always win the day.

I will miss my Dad.


Tamesis is where we learnt to sail,

And where we followed his steps,

From Cadets to Merlins, old and new… the river has taught us well.

The swimming, the water fights, the laughs and our friends,

I will miss my Dad.


So now Dad you can watch from the Passing Cloud

And be sure, when we are were sailing by, to give us… that magic puff.

I will miss you Dad.


Maddie Harris Speech


I wanted to speak today in memory of my grandpa. He was a very special man and was loved dearly by us all. I would like to think he is here today listening and smiling to all we have to say.

I have such lovely memories of the time we spent together from when I was little on Salcombe beach playing with his expensive watch, to only a couple of months ago, making him one of his favourite puddings, apple crumble, when he came round to ours for dinner.

For those who don’t know, I was grandpa’s favourite granddaughter. I could get him to do anything I wanted. When I was younger I used to sit him in his chair and I would pretend I was the doctor. I would wrap bandages around his arms and measure his legs . Why I’m not sure? But grandpa would just sit there and smile.

The first Saturday after grandpa died felt very strange and sad in our house, because for as long as I can remember Grandpa has spent every Saturday with us, whether it was to watch Harry and I  play football when we were younger, or to more recently grandpa came around to our house for his weekly lunch.

Words can’t describe how much I will miss grandpa, but I know from being with him in the hospital, he is now in a better place.

He died peacefully just after we all said goodbye to him.

Thank you

Maddie xx



Tammy Trains

photo Eric Finlayson


photo Eric Finlayson
On Sunday a couple of our students joined in the morning racing crewing for Alan Green aboard National 18′ Orion .
Sadly she was the only 18 on the day but there was a lively wind and lots of boat on boat incidents giving John and Alden some great racing experience.
They are keen to carry on racing and I’m sure will be welcomed into the fleet as will any other students interested in having a go.
Training will start again in the new year subject to demand.
Eric Finlayson

Early December Sailing

Racing was delayed today to avoid clashing with a new Kingston Royal Canoe Club event. Photo of the one of the starts above.

Once started, our  racing was good and close.  The gusts made at the start and finish provided ample opportunity for planing – just how we all like it.



Tammy Matters

Dear all

Some good racing was had by all who took part today.  It started gusty and finished gusty.  There was no 1030 handicap race, and the main starts had to be postponed due to the canoe races which started around 10am.  It was good to see two of the students crewing  Alan Green in his National 18′. Photos of todays racing in the report below.

We are getting new members all the time, and of course, thankfully, retaining longer standing members.  I am often asked about the history of the club.  I have been reminded of the excellent history of the club on the website which is to be found by clicking on the drop down menu of the ‘About the Club’ section.  Once you have read the history you can click on the ‘Old Photos’ tab and there is also a Pathe News item just next to it.

Next weeks racing will include the 1030 handicap  start and 1115 start for the class races.  We are hoping that the novices will make racing a regular feature.

Looking forward to the following events:

Thursday 6th – Club supper and talk.  Zoe Adams talk on her 100km charity walk in the summer, done in aid of the British Heart Foundation.  Please e mail Nicky Johnson on nickyjohnsontamesis@gmail.com to book the meal.  Please do this even if you have signed up in the clubhouse as the original sign up book has gone missing.  We would love to find it, so if anyone knows where it is?

Saturday 8th December – Sailjuice nr 2 at the Datchet Flyer at Datchet Water SC.

Sunday 16th  December – Christmas Pudding Races – prize for the boat that has best Christmas decorations. Normal club racing with that Christmas touch.

Sunday 16th December – Christmas Lunch – Members have been booking places for our Christmas Lunch all week and numbers are currently just over 100, about 4 short of our absolute capacity limit . We hope to be able to fit everyone in but might find it necessary to have a waiting list.

Please let Nicky Johnson know asap if you wish to come on nickyjohnsontamesis@gmail.com
Wednesday 26th December – Boxing Day Races for traditional silly prizes.  Pot luck lunch – no staff – so please bring contributions to share.  The bar will be  open and run by members.
See you soon
Carolyne Vines

Tammy Trains

The sun was sadly absent on Sunday but a brisk 9 knot North Easterly set us up for a great Start Racing session.
After an intensive morning going through the theory three students went on the water crewed by the training team.
After a session of boat handling exercises , including penalty turns we held a couple of fun races.
The benefit of previous sessions was obvious with tight starts ,hard fought nip and tuck races and neck and neck finishes .
The instructors then ensured best practice lee shore landings and made sure the boats were put away properly.
Training is now more or less complete for this year but students are being encouraged to take part in Sunday racing , in particular the Christmas Pudding race on the revised date of 16th December.
My thanks to all students and Instructors for a fun and productive year.
Eric Finlayson

Prize Giving 2018


photo – Zoe Adams
photo Zoe Adams
The catering crew – photo Zoe Adams
60 members attended our annual Autumn Dinner and Prize Giving last Saturday.  The prizes were presented to the winners by our Commodore, Carolyne, during breaks between courses at the dinner.  Many thanks to Brian Timbrell for organising all the splendid cups, trophies and prizes and to Caroline Timbrell for her invaluable assistance.
Thanks also to Nicky Johnson and members of the House Committee for organising the three course dinner and setting up the Clubhouse for the occasion.
Zoe Adams designed the poster and took photos (keep a look out on the website) and Chris Pollard designed and printed the menus and table plan.
Dinner was cooked by Joanna de Courcy with help from Caroline and Chris.  Tamesis staff were Sophie, Harry, Dylan, Josefine and Amy.
A super evening much enjoyed by all.
Nicky Johnson
Rear Commodore House, Tamesis Club

Tammy Matters

Dear all

Just recovering from a very successful Prize Giving on Saturday night.  Many thanks to all involved including of course those who came.  See the report below for more details.

Our Tammy Trainers were busy again on Sunday – please see the report.  Three potential crews/helms – great stuff.

The Kingston Royal Canoe Club (our neighbours on Trowlock Island) are holding a short race along the Middlesex Bank next Sunday from 10am to 11am.  We are therefore cancelling the 1030 race and the merlins will start at 1130, Lasers 1135, 18’s 1140.

Upcoming events:

Thursday 6th December  –  Club Supper followed by talk by Zoe Adams on her non stop walk fro Glasgow to Edinburgh for the British Heart Foundation in the summer.  Meal is £10pp.  Please sign up in the clubhouse, or e mail Nicky Johnson on nickyjohnsontamesis@gmail.com

Sunday 16th December – Christmas Pudding races and Christmas Lunch.  Fabulous event for all members.  Please sign up in the clubhouse or e mail Nicky Johnson on nickyjohnsontamesis@gmail.com  The list is filling up rapidly.

See you soon

Carolyne Vines


Tammy Trains

Yet another beautiful autumn day at Tammy.
Our priority this weekend was to finish off the Powerboat Level 2 course.
Sundays activities included close quarters maneuvering and, with a bit of help from the Dinghy team, various methods of towing.
We plan to run a Safety Boat Workshop in the new year including capsize and total inversion recovery and lee shore rescue.
All welcome , no charge first come first served.
Next Sunday we plan another Start Racing session starting at 11.
Eric Finlayson
Conventional tow