John Laing at sea


OYT South bulletin 19th September 2006

In this Bulletin

Boat Show – URGENT help needed!
We desperately need just a few more people to help out on our stand at the Southampton Boat Show this Friday and over the weekend (22, 23 or 24 Sept). Please help if you possibly can – these should be busy days at the show and it is a fabulous opportunity to get more people involved with OYT South: parents, young crew members, sea staff, other volunteers and supporters. You don’t need to be able to answer complex questions about OYT South (just pass enquiries on) - all you need is to be enthusiastic! Young crew members as well as adult volunteers would all be a great help on the stand – call David Salmon ASAP on 07850 723646 if you can give us a few hours of your time. It really would be enormously appreciated.

Meanwhile, MANY THANKS to all those who have helped already at this year’s show, or who are signed up to help later this week – not forgetting David Salmon, our General Manager, who has to put in a lot of hours to make the show a success! If you are trying to get hold of the office about other matters, please bear in mind that despite Sally’s best efforts, David’s workload does tend to pile up while the show is on so please bear with us if it takes a little longer than usual to deal with other enquiries.

2007 voyage programme

NOW AVAILABLE on our website here. Hundreds of exciting sailing opportunities, from local trips to adventures overseas, including the 2007 Tall Ships race series in the Baltic. Weekends up to 2-week trips; voyages for young people (12-25) or adults (16+); training voyages for prospective volunteer sea staff; opportunities for individuals and groups. Some voyages have already been sold – bookings are being taken NOW so please start making your bookings for next year!

Annual dinner 2006

This was held last Friday at Chichester Yacht Club – a superb venue, with 48 people attending. Almost £3,000 was raised, 50% for OYT South and the rest to be split between our children’s hospice partners, CHASE and Naomi House. Thanks to Chris Lane, Jo Rule and their team for all their hard work in organising this event.

Voyage News

Most of last week’s crew came from Devon and Cornwall branches of the Foyer Federation, a charity which supports homeless 16 to 25 year olds. They were joined by two crew members who had sailed with OYT South before, Aaron and Kate. They only had one day of decent wind during the trip, but John Laing’s hard-working engine enabled them to do Southampton – Cherbourg – Alderney – Weymouth – Poole – Cowes – Southampton in a week. During this time, they met up with a number of old friends: the sea cadet vessels Royalist and John Jerwood; the Cirdan Sailing Trust’s Queen Galadriel; in Poole they saw Brian Eyres and Chris from Contact Marine; and in Cowes they met Dick Patterson, who was one of the organisers of the army voyage in John Laing to Antarctica in 2001-2.

Many of the Foyer group were individuals who have a lot of difficult issues to cope with in their lives, but, as on so many Ocean Youth Trust voyages, the experience of sailing together and overcoming fears and challenges made a real difference. By the end of the week, skipper Wolf says they were brilliant, and by the last day, even some of those who had struggled most at the start were reluctant to leave!

Sea staff were Wolf, Dan Russell, Mark Boggis, Rosie “Habit” Allen (who passed her third mate’s assessment – many congratulations!) and Kirsty from the ASTO skippership scheme (the scheme Gizmo is currently on, for all those of you who know her). And crew member Kate Whiffing secured her recommendation to start training to be a third mate, following in the footsteps of her dad, Phil, who is already a member of sea staff!

People News
Another visit this week from Princess Craig, our ex-staff bosun, who came to renew his acquaintance with John Laing’s engine. And seen at the Boat Show, Mr and Mrs Holman – Kat and Simon, an even earlier staff bosun, married a few months ago!

Voyage Opportunities

If you would like to book one of the few remaining places for this season please call the office on 0870 241 2252.

22-24 Sept                   Southampton                £150    1 space left*
25-30 Sept                   Southampton                £275    3 spaces left**      
9-13 Oct                      Southampton                £120  12 spaces (full boat)
14-15 Oct                    Southampton                £tbc     12 spaces (full boat)***
17-20 Oct                    Southampton                £tbc     1 or 2 spaces possible - please ask.
30 Oct-3 Nov              Southampton                £140    12 spaces (full boat)

* This is a mates' training weekend, minimum age 16 - open to existing sea staff and to people interested in training as sea staff - including recent crew members.
** This is an adult (16+) familiarisation voyage - open to the same people as a mates' training weekend, but also suitable for parents, prospective group leaders and anyone else who wants to find out a little more about what we do - as well as having a thoroughly enjoyable voyage.
*** A late opportunity for a short weekend voyage which has just become available! This could be run as a Friday night - Sunday trip, or Saturday morning - Sunday, or even two separate Saturday and Sunday day sails. If you and a group of friends might be interested, please ask. It could be restricted to adults, or it could be a youth voyage. If you can't fill all 12 places, maybe we could match you with another small group? Contact the office for details. Price on application depending on what you want!

Prices for the voyages 9-13 Oct and 30 Oct – 3 Nov have been greatly reduced in the hope of selling them; these prices are subject to getting a minimum of 8 bookings for the trip.

For all enquiries about bookings, contact the office: 0870 241 2252 (calls charged at national rate) or email

Sea staff and prospective sea staff

Thanks to all those who responded to the call in the last bulletin to fill the remaining mates’ vacancies this season. Just a few left - please email me if you are interested!

30 Oct- 3 Nov (no bookings yet)          First and second mates needed if voyage is booked
3-5 Nov (TS Swiftsure)                        Second mate needed

For those of you who are new to the organisation, or who have only recently been recommended for sea staff, dates for adult training voyages next season are:

30 Mar-1 April (£150)
17-22 April (£275)
7-9 Sept (£150)
10-14 Sept (£275)

Prices include £30 annual membership and £70 mates sailing fee – which means that any other voyages you do in 2007 would be free!

All these training voyages are also open to qualified sea staff who are looking to make progress, brush up on a few skills or practice something they don’t often get a chance to do – as well as helping us introduce the new people to John Laing and OYT South. Email me to reserve a place.

Prospective sea staff who are hoping to sail next season: please note that to sail with young people, you must complete an OYT South application form, providing references, and have clearance from the Criminal Records Bureau. If you aren’t familiar with this system, it is perfectly straightforward but it can take weeks or even a few months for the CRB to deal with your form, so it’s well worth starting the process before the end of this year to ensure that you are ready to take up any opportunities to sail from the start of next season. Email Brian Eyres at for application forms.

Diary Dates

Southampton International Boat Show, until Sunday 24 September 2006.  Please call David Salmon NOW on 0870 241 2252 or mobile 07850 723646 to secure your choice of dates to help man the stand.

Sunday 1 October: John Laing maintenance day, Southampton (call Wolf 07771 771864 if you can come and help).

 Don't forget the OYT South link to Amazon - click on the Amazon logo at the bottom of the OYT South home page ( and a proportion of any money you spend will be donated to us - at no extra cost to you!

“It has been a great sail, the skipper was funny and the rest of the staff were great.” Axel