Refit 2006-7: volunteers needed
Six weeks to go until the shakedown voyage - and only 33 days until John Laing has to be back in the water! The launch is on March 7th, with the coding inspection (vital to allow us to sail with young people this year) booked for March 15th.
Lots of help still needed, especially from people who don't need accommodation - phone us as soon as possible on 07771 771864 to arrange when you can come. This is normally skipper Wolf's work phone number but he will be away from the boat from Saturday 3rd - Friday 9th February, when the refit will be managed by ex-staff bosun Craig Dickerson, who will have temporary charge of the phone.
Laura has been off this week doing her Ship Captain's Medical course with Yvonne Taylor. On the boat with Wolf were Brendan Stewart, Chris from Contact Marine, Craig "Princess" Dickerson, Dougie Walker, Julian Jansen van Rensburg, Becca Causer, Andy Shuttleworth, Phoebe, Flav "the fish" Zamboni, Pete and Richard French, Matt Bland, Rob Harwood and Luke & Mark from the Wheatsheaf Trust.
Jobs this week included painting the scuppers, getting the coach roof ready for a first coat of paint, sanding all the white paint on deck except for the cockpit, putting a first coat of paint on the portholes, more filling of deck and hull, putting the steering gear back in, adding another coat of paint to the mid-hatch and the dorade vents, finishing the water tank lids, and cleaning and sanding almost the entire engine room. The skipper's bilge is also now painted, and the area under the skipper's heads is done. And Phoebe managed to get the lid of a paint tin stuck to her hair but failed to notice this until Mattie pointed it out (good one-liner from Trevor Hewson: has her hair gone all glossy? Trevor, incidentally, is in hospital for a few days - we all wish him the very best).
We had a visit to the boat this week from the Southampton Probation Service (thanks to Jacki Tapley for arranging the contact), who may be able to help us with some extra refit labour and possibly also book a voyage later in the year.
And Wolf went to a meeting of Marine Net, an organisation which connects local businesses - thanks to Emma Laird for getting Wolf involved. This meeting included a visit to a submarine (Wolf says "it looked like it would be really tough to park") and the group also included our surveyor, Di Roberts, plus someone from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency who turned out to be a magician and was able to make the print appear and disappear on his business card.
For more information on how the refit works, who can come and what volunteers can do, see here.
Huge thanks this week to Mike Heffer (brother of third mate Dave "Tigger" Heffer) and the Masons of Aylesbury Vale, who raised £1,100 for OYT South at their Ladies Night Gala Dinner.
If you haven't already made a contribution to the refit appeal, PLEASE help us if you can. It is a very expensive job to keep John Laing in good condition, as well as keeping voyage prices down at a level which our crew members can afford - especially those from deserving or disadvantaged backgrounds.
To see how refit donations are spent, you can find a pdf of the Appeal leaflet here. It's already out of date as many more donations have come in since it was written, but it will certainly give you an idea of how refit funding works!
See here for how to make a donation.
Thanks to all those of you who have booked places on the various courses on February 17th. I have now sent out detailed joining instructions to those involved - let me know if you didn't get yours.
If anyone is planning to come to the pub meal after the training courses and hasn't already let me know, please do so as soon as you can - we are close to our limit on the number of people who can be fitted in, so don't leave it too late or there may not be room for you. Those who have expressed an interest in coming to the evening meal should have received an email copy of the menu, as we need to choose our food in advance - if you haven't already replied, please do so as soon as possible (let me know if your menu hasn't arrived).
If anyone is desperate for accommodation after the meal, Martin Skipper can offer two berths on his own boat in Hamble Yacht Services (see below).
Can't wait to go sailing? - crew needed urgently for two days in small yacht
Martin Skipper (an OYT South first mate) needs help to take his own boat, Cwac, from Hamble Yacht Services (where John Laing is in refit) to Weymouth. Weather permitting, he'll be leaving on Monday 19th Feb, after the training weekend, and must be in Weymouth for Tuesday evening. Food on the boat will be provided but if people want to stop at Poole overnight they will have to chip in for the mooring fees. There is room for two crew, at least one of whom must have a fair idea of what they are doing. There are waterproofs, lifejackets and harnesses on board. Cwac is a lovely boat and this trip might be good for anyone who wants to sail something a lot smaller than John Laing! E- mail Martin or phone 0208 786 7396.
Do you live in West Sussex?
OYT South's West Sussex Support Group is meeting on Tuesday February 13th at 1830 in Chichester Yacht Club. Please email Chris Lane if you might be interested in coming. This is an informal gathering, with a meeting lasting about an hour, and a chance to have a meal afterwards if you would like. In past this group has done excellent work selling berths, raising money and making contacts; and it's a good forum for sharing successes and good ideas Anyone welcome!
Roundwood voyage update
Second mate Andy Shuttleworth, who for several years has been involved with our annual voyage with the Roundwood Club from Brent, has emailed to tell us about a tremendous occasion this week. Peter and Margaret Smith from Roundwood invited him to the DEA award presentation. It was held at Brent Town Hall in the council Chamber and was very high profile. The Mayor presided, there were talks from the Chief Executive of the DEA scheme, the London DEA Regional director, the Deputy Director of Children's and Families department and the Leader of the council. The crew gave an excellent presentation about last year's voyage and Margaret introduced Andy to many of the important people so he was able to explain the work of OYT South and to thank them for their support for Brent youngsters, Margaret and the Trust. "All in all a very uplifting and humbling experience" says Andy. The Roundwood Club will be sending another crew to sail from Kiel to Ipswich this summer and it is a tribute to the group that three of last year's sea staff have already committed to sailing with them again because they enjoyed it so much!
2007 voyage programme
Vacancies in the first half of the season currently include:
24-29 March, Southampton, £310 - 4 spaces
21-25 May, Southampton to Torquay, £250 - 8 spaces
27 May - 1 June, Torquay to Guernsey, £350 - 11 spaces (ASTO Small Ships Race - see section on these races, below, for age restrictions)
2-7 June, Guernsey to Poole, £290 - 11 spaces
12-18 June, Southampton to Ipswich, £350 - full boat available (12 spaces)
There are also spaces on later dates up to November (see here for details).
We really need some help in filling the empty voyages - please use all your contacts and think whether you know anyone, groups or individuals, who might like to sail. If we get no bookings from young people (aged 12-25) for any particular voyage, we may offer it adult groups; but please note that our published voyage prices are subsidised for young people. Adult voyage prices can be negotiated with the office but are likely to be higher.
Anyone interested in any voyage, please contact the office.
7-20 July: Race 1, Arhus, Denmark, to Kotka, Finland (£845) - 8 spaces
20-29 July: Cruise in company, Kotka, Finland, to Stockholm, Sweden (£585) - 4 spaces
Race 2, Stockholm to Szczecin, is FULL.
You can find more information about the host ports here.
For Tall Ships voyages, we can take up to four crew members aged 15, and the rest must be aged 16-25.
Tall Ships travel
Crew members and sea staff planning to take part in Tall Ships voyages might like to know that Ryanair have now published their flight schedule covering Tall Ship events - they fly to all ports except Kotka. There are many other carriers flying to Tall Ship ports.
The Tall Ships Travel company is not arranging block bookings this year.
Small Ships 2007 - new availability for Torquay race
ASTO - the Association of Sea Training Organisations - Small Ships races are for sailing vessels up to 120 feet in length. John Laing will be taking part in two Small Ships races in 2007:
27 May - 1 June: Torquay to Guernsey, £350 - 11 spaces
2-7 October: Solent race (starting and finishing in Southampton), £325 - 12 spaces
The Solent race is open to anyone aged 12-25, and is only a one-day race (Saturday 6th October), but the full voyage allows time to get everyone familiar with the boat and do some race training.
There is a new rule affecting the Torquay race, which initially had a minimum age of 15. The organisers have now decided to accept 12-14 year olds under certain circumstances - essentially, you can apply but OYT South will make a decision based on sailing experience and other relevant factors, including the wish not to have too many very young crew members on this trip. But we would welcome a limited number of keen younger crew members.
Contact the office if you want to take part in either race.
We have now confirmed an exciting new port on our voyage programme, with three crew changes now happening in Kiel, Germany, the home of the world famous Kiel Week sailing festival. All these voyages offer the chance to see Kiel itself, as well as other great places during the voyages - as usual, itineraries depend upon the weather and on you, the crew.
The three Kiel voyages are:
21-28 June: Delivery voyage, Ipswich to Kiel, £480
29 June-7 July: Delivery voyage, Kiel to Arhus, Denmark, £420
9-16 Aug: Delivery voyage, Szczecin, Poland to Kiel £505
12 places (full boat) available on any of these three voyages.
These would be fantastic voyages for someone doing their Duke of Edinburgh Gold residential, or anyone else looking for an unusual voyage in one of three superb sailing areas. The August voyage is during school and college holidays; the June voyages might be ideal for people who have just finished exams and are desperate to get out of doors and have an adventure.
Kiel to Arhus and Szczecin to Kiel both have the same age restrictions as the Tall Ships voyages (up to four crew members aged 15, and the rest must be aged 16-25), because the voyages overlap with Tall Ships festivals in Arhus and Szczecin. The Ipswich to Kiel voyage may be open to younger crew members on application to OYT South.
Want to sail but can't afford it?
Two ideas for people hoping to raise money in order to sail in John Laing this year:
The Lewis Winstock Trust is inviting applications from individuals seeking sponsorship for charity-run "character building expeditions" - which describes our voyages perfectly. See here for details on how to apply. You will find that they ask for a letter from the charity confirming that you would be accepted on the voyage if you get the funding: email me a copy of the rest of your application, including some details about your background and why you want to do the voyage and, if appropriate, I will write the relevant letter from the charity.
Another option might be the Battisborough Charitable Trust. Applications can be made by individuals (not groups) from Devon and Cornwall only, to: Sonia Donovan, 57 Green Park Road, Plymstock, PL9 9HU. You will need to write a letter explaining a bit about yourself, why you want to sail and why you need help with funding. The Trust looks most favourably on people who have succeeded in raising some of the funds themselves, so you should write about what else you are doing towards paying the voyage fee - they will not normally cover 100% of your costs. And you should enclose a stamped, addressed envelope so they can reply to you.
Thanks to various relief skippers who have been confirming bookings to run John Laing whenever skipper Wolf is on his relief periods this year.
Voyages to be skippered by Brian Eyres, Yvonne Taylor, Helen Acton and Steve Furniss are fully booked, but there are still opportunities for people who would like to sail with other skippers:
Nick Crawford: Southampton to Ipswich voyage (12-18 June, £350) and Ipswich to Kiel (21-29 June, £480).
Dave Carnson will be doing Szczecin to Kiel (9 - 16 Aug, £505) as well as two other voyages which have been booked by the Roundwood and MDL groups respectively.
Martin Clough: Solent ASTO Small Ships Race (2-7 Oct, £325) and a voyage out of Southampton, 8-12 October, as well as the following voyage which has been reserved by TS Swiftsure.
If you've sailed with Nick, Dave or Martin in the past, you will know how good their voyages are, so book now to avoid disappointment.
Otherwise, there are still plenty of spaces left for those whose season wouldn't be complete without doing a voyage with Wolf!
Sea staff bookings
First, second and third mate berths for this year are booking up very fast. Thanks to all those who have given me a choice of dates; over the next few weeks I shall be embarking on the major task of allocating berths so that as many people as possible get something they want. If you haven't already been in touch about when you would like to sail, please email me as soon as possible!
Please note that you should have paid your annual membership (£30) and annual sailing fee (£70) before you can book.
New sea staff and those doing assessments this year MUST have completed an application form and a Criminal Records Bureau background check before you can sail - details here. But please note that filling in your application form and getting your CRB check done just puts you on the list of people eligible for voyages - you MUST contact me about dates if you want to sail this year.
And those over 65 must also now have an ENG1 medical before you can sail - let me know if you need advice or information about arranging this.
Training voyages for sea staff and new prospective sea staff
The mates training weekend, 30 March to 1 April, is full, but I have set up a reserve list in case anyone drops out.
There are two spaces on the adult training voyage 17-22 April (£275) - email me to book. This is the ideal trip for people new to OYT South who want to see how we run our voyages and get used to the boat before committing to training as a watch leader.
The next training voyages for prospective sea staff after that will be in September: There has been a date change for the longer voyage, which was originally planned for 10-14 September, as we have been asked to make these dates available for booking by young people. The adult voyage is being moved to the previous week which, as it is the first week of term, seems much less likely to attract interest from young people. So the correct dates are now:
3-7 Sept (£275) - 12 places
7-9 Sept (£150) - 10 places
Prices include £30 annual membership and £70 mates sailing fee - which means that any other voyages you do in 2007 would be free! Email me to book.
Please note that as these voyages are for adults only, you cannot do your watch leader assessment on them - to be assessed, we have to see how you deal with leading and teaching young people. The adult training voyages are designed to give you a chance to get used to things before you take on the responsibility of trying to teach others.
Website - members-only section
If you are a paid-up member of OYT South sea staff, you should have password access to the members-only section of this website, which includes sea staff assessment forms and the Voyage Handbook (baboon file). If you don't have your password, please email me.
Oysterband Big Session Festival
Last year, an OYT South group had a great time at this music festival, and several people are planning to go again this year - it's held in Leicester on June 15-17. Details here.
Survey - tell us what you think
Still looking for more responses to the web-based survey - please have a look!
New readers' section
If you are reading the OYT South newsletter for the first time, I hope you will find it useful and interesting, and filled with opportunities for things you will want to get involved in. Please feel free to join in any OYT South activities - nothing here is restricted to long-standing members or people who already know one another. New people are always very welcome!
If you feel that you don't yet know much about OYT South, you will learn more by keeping a regular eye on these newsletters; but for a lot of background information, take a look around this website:
If you are aged 12-25 and hoping to sail as a crew member, take a look here.
Adults interested in joining our volunteer sea staff can check here.
To volunteer for OYT South ashore, please look here.
To help with the winter refit, see here.
The Directors of Ocean Youth Trust South
Annual General Meeting will take place on
At TS Hornet Sea Cadet Unit, Royal Clarence Yard, Weevil Lane, Gosport.
2) Apologies of absence received
3) Minutes of last meeting 19 February 2006
4) Chairman's Report
5) Treasurer's Report, presentation of accounts for year ending 31 October 2006
6) Resignation of Directors on rotational basis
7) Nominations for Directors/ Trustees
8) Confirmation of appointment of Auditor
9) Items previous advised with 7 days of AGM for inclusion of meeting
10) Date and time of next meeting
11) Close of meeting
Please note: - Everyone is welcome to attend, but only paid up members may vote on any resolution presented to the members.
Nominations for election to board of Trustees must be received at office at Spur House 14 days prior to the meeting, and must be agreed with nominee before submission.
Light refreshments will be available before commencement of meeting.
Any item you wish to be raised at the AGM must be forwarded in writing 7 days prior to meeting.
Please notify the office if you will be able to attend. Thank you.