First aid and GMDSS courses


OYT South bulletin 23rd February 2007

In this Bulletin

2007 AGM news
Key news from the AGM last Sunday was the election of two new Trustees, Phoebe Swatton and Trevor Hewson. Thanks are due to David Illingworth, who has been a Trustee since 2004 but did not stand for re-election. In his time as a Trustee, David made a major contribution by arranging the complete redesign and relaunching of the Trust’s website.

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Annual report
OYT South's Annual Report and accounts for 1 Nov 2005 - 31 Oct 2006 now available here.

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Bosun’s radio
Thanks to Pete Yeoman for helping with the request in last week’s bulletin for a radio for Laura the bosun, so she can listen to orchestras while everyone else has Oysterband, and Bach while everyone else has Snoop Dogg.

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Refit 2006-7: volunteers needed
Three weeks to go until the shakedown voyage - and only 12 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. Up to now the team has generally tried to take Mondays and Tuesdays off, but not this coming week – help still needed on Monday 26th Feb.

Working with Wolf and Laura this week have been Dave “Tigger” Heffer; Matt Bland and Rob Harwood (currently known to the rest of the team – despite their protests - as Scooby Doo and Shaggy – which means they can be motivated by Scooby Snacks and are doing a great job watching for suspicious-looking janitors); Dave Blogg, Ray Dittrich, Eddie Harper, Rachel from the Jubilee Sailing Trust; Miranda Camping, Anthony Fawcett, Amanda Smith, Geoff Eddy, Mark Boggis (who returned all the boards he has been painting) and Phoebe.

Jobs this week included finishing painting the deck; painting all of the cockpit except the bits inside the cockpit coaming; more touching up in the engine room; finishing reassembling the stern platform; a first coat of paint in the workshop bilge, bosun’s cabin bilge, veg locker bilge and the “bilge with no name”, in between the veg locker and the mid-bilge. Phoebe has been painting the deck numbers. The boot top and rubbing strake are done. The saloon is painted. The bottle screws are going back on; and they have started dealing with the leak in the skipper’s heads.

For more information on how the refit works, who can come and what volunteers can do, see here.

The refit team did manage a day off this week and went on an expedition to Dorset. For once this did not involve getting lost as they had some professional tour guides: Brian Eyres showed them round Lulworth Castle; and they were taken up one of Dorset’s hitherto undiscovered mountain peaks (Wolf says it was very steep and at least a hundred yards up) by Steve Lacey, who explained how great the view would have been if it hadn’t been so foggy. This was followed by a pancake night which was also attended by Martin Clough, Becca and David, in honour of Phoebe’s birthday. It was also ex-staff bosun Craig’s birthday this week, so many happy returns to them both.

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Financial appeal
Thank you very much to the Gosling Foundation for a donation of £1,000 this week.

The refit is drawing to a close and the bills are coming in fast, so 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.

See here  for how to make a donation.

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Shorebased training
Last weekend saw an excellent training day, during which 8 people earned GMDSS qualifications, 8 got the RYA radar certificate, 11 passed first aid, 9 passed Basic Food Hygiene and 7 passed Sea Survival. Many thanks to instructors Wolf, Stuart, Tony & Nicky, Mike and Yvonne.

This was followed by more than 30 people attending a dinner at Kingfisher Caravan Park, Gosport. Thanks to them for coping with such a big group, and also to David Salmon for making the arrangements and dealing with all the last-minute changes.

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Can you help track down this person?
Some time within the last year or two, second mate Trevor Hewson spoke to someone on board John Laing - possibly the father of another member of sea staff? - who was the ex-chief engineer of a company called Shipton Engineering. Trevor is very keen to track this person down again - can anyone help? Email me if you know who this person is!

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Voyage posters
Now available to download from the website and print out: two posters which you could hand out to people or put on a school, college or club notice board, to encourage young people to come sailing with us.

One is mainly pictures and is primarily designed to get people looking at our website; the other poster has a bit more text. Both can be printed on ordinary A4 paper so I hope you will find it easy to spread them around!

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Voyages still available
We really need people to fill some of the following voyages:

Small Ships races
"Baltic and back" voyages
Tall Ships races

Among standard UK-based voyages the most urgent spaces to fill are:

24 - 29 March: Southampton, £310. Just three spaces left but this voyage is only 4 weeks away so we need to fill it urgently!
21 - 25 May: Southampton to Torquay, £250
2 - 7 June: Guernsey to Poole, £290
12 - 18 June: Southampton to Ipswich, £350

After that there are several vacancies from the end of August onwards.

For Duke of Edinburgh Gold Residential projects, see here

Please book now, or send the links to your friends!

For the full voyage programme, including latest figures on the number of berths available, see here.

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.

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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. 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.

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Sea staff bookings
I still need qualified sea staff to fill the following places - can anyone help?

JL07-04, 2-5 April. Third mate needed for a mixed crew at the younger end of our range. Steve Furniss is the skipper.
JL07-05, 6-10 April. First and second mates needed. School group (new client). Steve Furniss is the skipper and there will be a third mate assessment.
JL07-09, 23-27 April. Second mate needed. Another school group from a new client, but this school is for boys with special educational needs. Again, Steve Furniss is the skipper and there will be a third mate on assessment.
JL07-10b, 30 April - 3 May. First and second mates needed, and possibly a third mate too! Voyage booked by the Wheatsheaf Trust but may be divided into two day sails and one overnighter, so several different groups of people can have a "taster". Skipper Wolf.

There are still plenty of spaces later in the season, but I want to get the early ones filled as soon as I can. Email me if you can help!

Please note that you should have paid your annual membership (£30) and annual sailing fee (£70) before you can book.

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. It does need to be an ENG1 and not any other kind of medical – please don’t rush off and spend money on an ML5 or anything else. ENG1s need to be done by an MCA-approved doctor, not by your own GP.

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Training voyages for sea staff and new prospective sea staff
The mates training weekend, 30 March to 1 April, is full, but there a reserve list in case anyone drops out.

There are one or 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.

After that, there are two adult training voyages in September:

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.

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.

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People News
Kat and Travis Musselwhite (ex-OYT South Trustee and first mate) have announced the birth of a son, George, 7lb13, all doing well. Many congratulations!

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Chris Ellis Award
The award for the best piece of written work based on an OYT South voyage has gone this year to Richard Penton Stewart – well done for producing an excellent account of the highs and lows of a voyage last year. Richard wins £200 off the price of another voyage.

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Anyone need small boat sailing experience?
Does anyone want a few days’ sailing in a Westerly 30 with someone preparing for her Coastal Skipper? 10th/11th March and 24th/25th March; cost about £30 plus food and drink; starts and finishes in Hamble. Email me for details.

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Website - links needed
With so much work having been done on this website over recent months, it would be really great if we could increase the numbers of people visiting it. If you have any access to another website - anything from a marine site to a MySpace page - could you include a link to And let me know so that we can link back to you!

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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 the website, which includes sea staff assessment forms and the Voyage Handbook (baboon file). If you don't have your password, please email me.

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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.

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Photos needed
Please keep sending photos from John Laing voyages or the refit, and I'll use the best on this website.

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Survey - tell us what you think
Still looking for more responses to the web-based survey - please have a look!

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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.

And if you have any questions, please email me - or contact the office.

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“I had a very good time and I learned a lot – nice to meet you all!” Hollie, aged 15