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South West: Salcombe Rally
27th September 2017 @ 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
After a very successful rally in Dartmouth a number of boats decamped to join the Salcombe rally.
Westerlys started to arrive on the visitor’s pontoon from 10.00 am having left Dartmouth around 06.30 to take the tide around Start Point. In the event the advantage disappeared at Prawle Point and it was a bit of a drag into the Estuary until the flood took affect. We were greeted on entry by the Harbour launch. The whole of the east side of the pontoon had been reserved for us. The berthing plan devised by Charles Patchett worked out to perfection. The remaining boats who had elected to leave at a more civilised hour arrived just in time for the pontoon party at 18.00. Much wine and nibbles were consumed!
Charles and Jane arranged a rural walk centered on Loddiswell for the following day. Two mini buses took the walkers (about 20) and dog to the drop off point. First stop was a very good garden centre with the advantage of a coffee break. The walk continued up the side of a stream following a disused railway line. The station along the way had been converted into an attractive house. Most walkers did the whole walk up to Topsham Bridge and return through Aveton Wood and Silveridge Wood.
As we had the aged dog in tow we elected to take the first escape route across the stream and down the other bank. After negotiating many tree roots and fallen trees we crossed open grassland to rejoin the road and so back to Loddiswell.
Everyone else did the full distance – the length of which seemed in some dispute; varying from 5.5 miles to 8 miles. Possibly the greater mileage included walking round Kingsbridge whilst waiting for the bus back to Salcombe. Quite a few ice creams were consumed during the wait.
Charles had arranged for the Loddiswell Inn to open at 14.00 specially for all of us to have lunch. Such is the power of Westerly. Everybody bussed back to Kingsbridge and so to Salcombe. Much use of bus passes!
Back on board at 19.30. The pontoon was strangely quiet after such a busy day.
During the day on Friday people did their own thing, catching up on e-mails and visiting the Yacht Club for a light lunch. In the evening a meal had been arranged at Salcombe Yacht Club. We were treated to pre-dinner canapes and a Pimms. The meal was beautifully prepared by a Roux trained chef and served in the Chart Room upstairs. 37 people sat down to dine.
The boats and crews attending the rally were Pearl Fisher, Aurora, Senyol lll, Drongo, Sorcerer, Westerly Winner, Bonnie, Starquest, Chianti, Luckmead, La Saulire, Brown Eyed Girl, Classmate, Sea Gipsy, Lady Annabelle. In addition the crews of Kantara, Blue Star and Goldeneye attended the dinner as “Westerly on wheels”.
On Saturday boats started to depart early; several for the Channel Islands and Rosscoff and the remainder to their home ports or to continue cruising.
Full marks to Charles and Jane for organising such a great event.
Anne and Martyn Langford