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'Westerlys on Wheels' – Valentine’s Rally, 9 - 11 February 2018
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The inaugural Westerly on Wheels event certainly put the group’s motto – “Foul British weather will not deter us” – to the test. We arrived a day early to ensure that everything was prepared; and it was just as well that we did, because, despite several telephone calls with the pub over the previous weeks to confirm pitches, meals, etc, the staff on duty on the day we arrived had no record of us coming! Moreover, of the promised six hard-standings, there were only three available, the rest being already occupied by other campers. The back-up of using the pub’s overspill car park was therefore necessary, but we needed to make an urgent shopping trip (thanks to David Symonds) to purchase a couple of splitters to provide the promised electric.

David and Judith had also arrived on the Thursday, and we set our vans up with the awnings facing each other, which together with the Westerly Gazebo, we hoped would provide a dry meeting place for the pontoon party. In the event, we decided that the wind would be too much for the big Westerly Gazebo and so made do with a small one to extend our van’s awning instead. In any case, the wind increased late in the evening, and we had to take everything back inside.

Next morning, we put it all out again. The temperature had just struggled above zero, although the wind chill made it feel much lower. With Westerly flags flying we were ready to welcome the fleet! By Lunchtime most had arrived and we had our “pontoon party” get-together, just before sunset. David and Judith’s gas-fired “volcano” provided warmth for those huddled around it.

The following morning found us sheltering under the awnings from the wind and rain, for coffee and a Valentines themed quiz, and a wonderful iced sponge cake, specially made by Mandy and Paul Whitney, and featuring the WOW logo, to commemorate the inaugural event. Tim and Michele Burkinshaw were worthy winners of the Quiz and received the prize of a bottle of bubbly. Afterwards, although it was still raining intermittently, we decided to take down the gazebo and furl up the awnings as gale force winds (and rain) were forecast for the afternoon.

After lunch five hardy souls began the 1½ mile trek to visit Keyneston Mill where we had arranged for a visit to the Parterre perfumery and Botanic Café. On the way, we diverted to visit St Mary’s Church and admired the ancient murals on the walls. After tea in the café, we were shown around the perfumery, and given a talk on aromatic plant cultivation and perfume making. Fortunately, the rain held off for the walk back to the camp, and we didn’t get too wet.

In the evening we had arranged dinner in the True Lover’s Knot pub. This was accompanied by a raffle, which raised a total of £66 towards the Ocean Brothers’ target of raising £100,000 towards the British Skin Foundation charity. More information on the Ocean Brothers epic Atlantic rowing challenge can be found on their website. Another cake (chocolate, this time) by Mandy completed a very sociable evening, and we retired to our ‘vans.

On Sunday morning, the pub put on a full English Breakfast for all, before we went our separate ways home. There was even a brief flurry of snow as we packed up the campsite.

In total, 19 people (and three dogs), representing ten boats, attended the event. It was particularly encouraging to meet several couples who had not attended Westerly events before. We are looking forward to organising the next Westerly on Wheels event in the Autumn. Watch the website for details. If you want to be reminded of future WOW events please send us an email.

Contact: Dick Leedham


WOA at the London Boat Show 2018
The Association was at the London Boat Show at ExCel in a big way!
WOA had Centaur Sapphire III on show as the backdrop to the Show’s PBO Theatre, where we presented to the Show on Westerlys and WOA. We thank John Goode for his steadfast support of WOA's presence at the London Boat Show.
WOA’s three Flag Officers and Aurora Allen, Sapphire III’s owner, were on hand to introduce Show visitors to our great boats. Meanwhile, our welcoming team of members was standing by on the Stand to sign-up new members.
Annual General Meeting 2017
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The 50th AGM of the Association took place at The Village Hotel Wirral, Bromborough, Merseyside.

Members started arriving on Thursday taking advantage of the hotel facilities and its proximity to Liverpool and Port Sunlight Village to take an early break and do some sight-seeing although the weather was less than kind.

On Friday evening, approximately 40 people enjoyed two very different, but equally interesting presentations. The first was given by Precision Paints, the donors of our Precision Prize Trophy. An outline of the rebranded company and its products was given which resulted in a thought provoking discussion on where DIY application of antifouling was going. It was generally agreed that all concerned needed to take heed of advice given and adopt best practices.

The second company was Dah-Di-Dah, a new publishing enterprise, that have produced a range of aide memoire books to be used in an emergency. They have four volumes – Diesel, First Aid, Navigation and Baby/Child First Aid, all are designed to be prompts for action to be taken should you be in an emergency situation. Hopefully they will never be used in anger.

Saturday morning pre-AGM was a hive of activity with a range of companies collected in the lobby to display their products and discuss the services they had to offer plus, of course, our boat jumble.

The meeting commenced with the Commodore, George Pickburn, welcoming everyone at the end of our 50th Anniversary year using the gavel that had been received as a 50th Anniversary gift from Westerly Club Nederland. The Commodore and the Treasurer then gave their reports followed by the election of committee members and honorary auditor. This included a resume of the anniversary year celebrations; in addition to the gavel a framed certificate of congratulations from American Westerly Owners Newsletter was on display. The Treasurer shared with the meeting the problems being experienced with members who pay by Standing Order who do not update them or cancel them when they leave the Association. Direct Debits would be much easier to control but whichever form of payment if used the plea is please include your membership number!

The Commodore presented engraved glasses to retiring committee members and Officers, David Gill, WOA’s Auditor, Martyn Morris, Rear Commodore whose help and advice has been much appreciated, Robert Jones, Technical editor for 7 years, John Ruskin, our first Public Relations Officer who has done “a fantastic job and will be a hard act to follow”, and Bob Shapland was retiring as Treasurer, for the 2nd time, having has also served as Commodore. Finally, a big thank you was given to Liz Truscott, who has served as Secretary for the last 7 years. Liz was presented with a potted patio plant as a memento of her service to WOA.

There being no other business the formal meeting was closed. Presentations ensued of the Magazine Prizes, The Harken Trophy, Rayner Challenge Plate, Navigators and General Photographic Trophy and Commodore’s Clock. The Magazine Editor, Jill Pickburn thanked the many contributors during the year including members of Area Groups who send in their reports of events. She also thanked Brian Easteal for his ‘From the Archives’ series of articles.

A brief resume of the contenders for the articles and logs was then given before the winners were announced as follows:-
Best Article – Julian Mandiwall ‘Happy Birthday Borborygmae’:
Best Log – Liz Marshall ‘Centaur’s Voyage around the Aegean’
Best Technical Article was awarded by Robert Jones to Alan and Ann Rand – ‘Free Charging - Use Solar’
The Harken Trophy for an Inventive Technical solution – to Bill Redgrove ‘Continuing Camomile’s 30th Birthday Refit, Replacing Toe-Rails and Grab Handles’. Julian Roberts received the trophy on Bill’s behalf as he is on his way to Ascension.
The Navigator & General Photographic Trophy had 87 entries and was won by-Richard Truscott for his shot of a Konsort on the Round the Island Race.
The Precision Prize Trophy, to be awarded by the Area Groups (it will be circulated around the Area Groups with each group deciding as to how it is to be awarded) was won by John and Pauline Powell for winning the Portsmouth to Beaulieu Race held during the 50th Anniversary Meet in Portsmouth.
The Rayner Challenge Plate, our most prestigious trophy, was won by Doug Pingel for his participation in the ‘Jester Azores Challenge 2016’.
The Commodore’s Clock was awarded to Bob Shapland, not just for his service to the Association but for the help and advice given to Commodores, the Committee and members over 11 years of service.

The meeting was then opened to the floor for general discussion. John Alker, from SW Group, addressed the meeting with regards to the review of Reeds Almanac that is being considered over the coming 3 years. John asked how the content can be made more relevant and useful and requested that any thoughts and comments be emailed to him.

The Commodore than gave notice of the Fulmar Nationals at New Quay, 22nd – 25th June.

Alan Rand along with Jan Smallwood and JayT have been looking for ‘Lost Westerlys’. Alan is photographing any Westerly he encounters and either sends it to the owner, if he’s a member or to Jan if not. Alan requests that other members do the same.

Judith Symonds, on behalf of the last 3 Commodores thanked Liz Truscott for all her hard work and support during her time as Secretary.

Dick Leedham suggested the formation of a Westerly Motorhome Group for out of season activities and will put an article in the magazine.

A request for the competition photographs to be made available for viewing was made and JayT will be asked to provide a link on the web site.

A carvery lunch was then served.

The afternoon session started with a presentation by Katherine Lynch, Heritage Manager of Port Sunlight Village Trust who gave an interesting account of how the Village has developed over the past 100+ years and how the Trust is working to preserve it for generations to come. Our second speaker was Brian Anderson, a Wirral based architect, photographer and lecturer, who entertained us with his photographs and anecdotes of life on and around the River Mersey.

The meeting ended at 4.00pm with many members returning home whilst those of us who remained enjoyed the comfort and extensive facilities of The Village hotel for a further evening.

Next year we will be back at The Lifeboat College in Poole, I hope to see you all there.

Gill Clare – Minutes Secretary.

Contact: Gill Clare


London Boat Show 2017
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Despite the rail strike and threats of snow there was a good turnout of WOA members at the London Boat Show. The 237 visitors recorded and new memberships and sales statistics compare well will both last year’s London show and with the Southampton Show.

The WOA stand was part of a large stand area allocated to Owners Associations. The area was at the west end of the South Hall next to the indoor Marina and was shared with the Moody Owners Association and the Broom Owners Association. As usual the area had been organised by John Goode and John was there during the build up to advise and assist.

We had excellent stand staff on all the days including one person who had actually worked at Westerly building boats.

Special events during the show comprised a reception on the PBO stand and our pontoon party on the late-night Thursday evening which was well attended despite the threat of snow.

On the second Friday WOA had a slot on the London Boat Show Stage. I gave a 30minute illustrated talk entitled “Classic Westerly Yachts – Even better value in 2017”. You can download the presentation file from this URL http://tinyurl.com/woalondon (save the downloaded file and open it with powerpoint or a powerpoint viewer). The presentation briefly described the history of the Westerly Company and the objectives of Commander Rayner noting that it is 50 years since the death of Commander Rayner during London Boat Show week in 1967. The presentation illustrated the excellent value of Westerly Yachts in 2017 by reference to current adverts from the WOA web site. Thanks to Brian Easteal, Tim Pullen, George Pickburn, John Ruskin and Mary Buchannan for making pictures and slides available. Special thanks to Ken Hastie for allowing use of a short video of his W33 “Forever Autumn” sailing off Northumberland.

Future show dates in 2017 are expected to be:

Beaulieu Boat Jumble: 23 April
Jersey Boat Show: 29, 30 April & 1 May
All Wales Boat Show: 9-11 June
Southampton Boat Show: 15-24 September
Scottish Boat Show at Kip Marina: 13, 14, 15 October

Contact: David Jibb


50th Anniversary National Meet
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Participating Westerlys gathered for the 50th Anniversary National Meet at Gunwharf Quays Marina in Portsmouth from Tuesday 20th June. By the Friday of the week’s celebrations, 45 boats had arrived, many dressed overall, creating a spectacle for sailors and the public alike with their 50th Anniversary banners fluttering in the lee of the 550 feet high Spinnaker Tower. WOA members came from near and far, including Brittany, the Netherlands, Scotland and, remarkably, our only Australian members.

To mark the anniversary, a memento collection of a rally banner, buff and badge, all bearing our 50th anniversary emblem, was given to participants in the Meet and all attending our 50th events.

The Meet was comprised of several events - thank you to our South Coast Group for hosting them: a rally in Ryde’s drying harbour at for bilge keelers; a re-enactment of the race from Portsmouth to the Beaulieu Entrance held at the Association Inaugural rally in 1966; a rally and BBQ in Newtown Creek, a parade of Westerlys (take a look at the video on our new Facebook page); and a “Solent Haunts” evening for visiting members at the Still & West pub in Old Portsmouth. There were, of course, a couple of almost spontaneous pontoon parties, one hosted by the East Coast Group.

At Gunwharf Quays, we were visited on the pontoons by marine insurers Navigators & General, and Paul Cochrane of XW Rigging did a Q&A session on rigging and rope, including a demo of braid-on-braid splicing,

The focal event of the Meet was a Reception and Gala Dinner in the Royal Maritime Club where 144 diners sat down to four courses, and an excellent celebratory cake baked by member Mary Allen and decorated by Creative Cakes. The dinner speaker was Peter Thomas, ex sales director of Westerly, and our special guests were Caroline and David Hardy of Trafalgar Yacht Services, and Jackie and Tim Pullen of JayT who run the Membership Office and Website. In surprise presentations by Tjerk Tjeerde of the Westerly Club Nederland, we received a gavel for the Commodore to keep the Committee’s business flowing, a bottle of “Schipper Bitter”, and, on behalf of The American Westerly Owners’ Newsletter, a framed certificate of congratulations with accompanying bottle of West Indian rum. A tombola of donated items from our advertisers raised over £300 for the Ed Dubois associated charity CLIC Sargent; this will be added to that raised at our other 50th events. The evening concluded with enthusiastic dancing to IB5.

And if that wasn't enough, the week also included the referendum on membership of the European Union!

All were exhausted by Monday 27 June - a rest day - with participants finally dispersing when the weather suited both boat and crew.

George Pickburn, Commodore

Photos courtesy of Tim Harrison, Jill Pickburn, & George Pickburn
The Beaulieu Boat Jumble.
WOA was on stand Red (R) 33 which was on the left quite near the entrance.

Contact: David Jibb


Dubois Naval Architects announce the death of Ed Dubois
Ed Dubois made a huge contribution to the burgeoning success of Westerly yachtbuilding from the 1980’s onwards.
He was the company’s designer of choice to move Westerlys into a more modern market when the time came to replace the biggest-selling British yacht ever built – the Centaur.
Unfazed by the size of the challenge he produced the 26ft Griffon, soon a considerable success that paved the way for the equally well-liked 32ft Fulmar, one of his personal favourites. He went on to produce a total of 17 different Westerlys until the firm’s regrettable meltdown in 2000.
Although he progressed eventually to superyacht design and moved to a quite different level, he still occasionally recalled his earlier days at the Westerly drawing board that produced for him well-deserved recognition all around the globe.
Many are the owners of Dubois designed boats large and small who will feel the sailing world has just lost one of its best-loved marks.
Where WOA has been ...

When WOA cruises visit clubs and harbours, there is often an exchange of burgees.
Here’s our collection so far . . . .