Copyright 2022 - BBSC


I have now been a member of BBSC for 10 years and counting! How did that happen?  Since joining I have sailed many thousands of miles learning all the way as you do when you sail. I have sailed into literally hundreds of beautiful harbours and anchorages, that I would never have seen without Brighton Belle. I have met many good friends...


I have now been a member of BBSC for 10 years and counting! How did that happen?  Since joining I have sailed many thousands of miles learning all the way as you do when you sail. I have sailed into literally hundreds of beautiful harbours and anchorages, that I would never have seen without Brighton Belle. I have met many good friends through the club and continue to be amazed at how sailing on a yacht like Brighton Belle can be available to us all for only a few hundred pounds a year. 

I have always loved being on the water. I started sailing dinghies as a wee lad and progressed on to yachts as a teenager sailing wherever and whenever possible. I spent a couple of gap years working charter yachts around the Eastern seaboard of the States, through the Bahamas to the Caribbean and across the 'pond' to the Mediterranean.   RYA Yacht Master since 1998. I came back to get a 'real job' but sailing as often as possible. I joined Brighton Belle Sailing Club 2009.  The club has been a brilliant route for me to sail on a beautiful yacht with friends.

So many coastlines and so little time! 




Return from Lockdown

Towards the end of last year, Brighton Belle arrived in the Canaries for another winter cruising season. Little did we know that a few months later the last crew would be flying home, leaving Brighton Belle in Marina San Miguel, Tenerife, as the Covid-19 pandemic took hold.

This July, a decision was taken to bring her home to the UK, come what may, and an intrepid crew led by Stewart flew out to Tenerife to carry out some overdue repairs, and start on the long passage back to Brighton. The crew comprises Stewart Henton (skipper), Mike Maddox (mate), Chris Anderson, Phil Helby, Petra Kopp, Bill Hill and Sevdalina Rukanova. They have hired an Iridium satellite phone, so they can download GRIB files and other weather data, and upload reports of their progress.

This blog is a rolling account of their trip as it occurs, and will be updated as each report comes in. Feel free to comment (scroll to the bottom of the page), although the onboard crew will not be able to read your comments until they reach land. This could be en route, or only at journey's end.

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Brighton Belle arrives home after a 7246 mile cruise!

Brighton Belle sailed out of Brighton marina on September 3rd 2016 heading off for a winter cruising adventure. Since then she has traveled 7246 miles visiting Guernsey, Spain, Portugal, Madeira, Lanzarote, Fuerteventura, Tenerife, La Gomera, Isla de la Palma, the Azores,  across to Brittany, up the French Atlantic coast and ove...

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Brighton Belle sailing in 2017

This blog is to wish all members and friends of Brighton Belle Sailing Club a Happy Christmas and to give a brief outline of our sailing plans for 2017, so that you can sail more and ensure your Happy New Year :-)

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AGM - 4 December 2016

​We held the seventh Annual General Meeting for Brighton Belle Sailing Club on Sunday 4th December at the Cricketer's Arms in the heart of Brighton. It was great to see so many members and guests there to hear about the results of our club's past year, and to plan some more sailing adventures and club activities for the com...

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Brighton Belle’s winter in the Canaries Lanzarote, 12th to 19th November 2016

I write this as a bit of a novice sea sailor, half way through my Day Skipper theory course and a complete newcomer to Brighton Belle. What a wonderful boat you have! Here's a brief report of her late November outing around Lanzarote. We, the fresh new crew of three complete strangers to each other, joined skipper Fiona, first mate Joan and back up...

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Video of Brighton Belle under sail

See this amazing video of Brighton Belle taking part in the 2016 Sussex Yacht Club Royal Escape race from Brighton to Fecamp in France. Many thanks to crew member and drone pilot Shawn Vader for this wonderful video. Watch Now Drag to move block. We had a good start close to Brighton pier, getting first over the line, then sailed clo...

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Brighton Belle in the press

Yachting Monthly magazine sent a journalist along to join our delivery trip to Ireland in May 2015. ..

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Brighton Belle & Brighton Lifeboat Woman Overboard Exercise

Irenka ready to come aboard BB

Gordon, Liz, Stewart and I had the most interesting, useful and enjoyable session on Sunday 18 October practising our Man overboard drill . We were ably assisted by Brighton Lifeboat. Dan Gurr, the senior helm, kindly agreed to help us and supply a man(sic) to go overboard – crew member Irenka Griffin. Gordon had come prepared for a dip but was, I ...

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From Cork to Kinsale the long way

On the 6th of June 2015 Brighton Belle was on the custom house pontoon in the heart of Cork, Ireland. A brilliant spot for visiting Cork and its night life.

I was staying on as skipper from the previous week. After the previous week of gales on the nose all the way from Brighton I was chilling out on deck in the sunshine while waiting for the arrival of the new crew and guests for the coming week. 

I was delighted to hear that the new crew Jo, Beth and  Francina wanted to stay that night in Cork. Another chance to enjoy that delightful city.

Early next morning after a hearty breakfast, safety briefings and a chat about the week to come, we slipped down the river, past Cobh and out toward the sea. Sunday morning and the harbour was full of yachts racing as we sail out between them and out towards the Old Head of Kinsale. . 

The wind was light and the sea calm and I was praising Neptune for favoring us as my plan was to make a shortish passage this first day giving the new guests a chance to get familiar with the boat and learn the ropes in comfort.

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Brighton Belle is re-masted

Brighton Belle was re-masted today and is now proudly wearing shinny new rigging. She looks very smart . Follow this link to see the event. Thanks Ingmar.


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Brighton Belle has been de-masted


Yesterday we set about unstepping both of Brighton Belle's masts for service and rigging replacement


Brighton Belle was moved to a berth close to the road that goes over the bridge into the boat yard.  The crane set up in the road and lifted Mike Stevens up to tie the slings on. Once the weight of the mast was supported by the crane, all the shrouds were disconnected at deck level and the mast was slowly lifted straight up. Brighton Belle was reluctant to let the mast go...stuck fast but after a few anxious moments and with a little work it suddenly popped and started to rise out of the deck. The mast was laid onto wooden trestles ready to be serviced and re rigged in the coming days.


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Brighton Belle has been lifted into the boat yard for winter maintenace


Brighton Belle has been lifted into the boatyard this afternoon to have her bottom pampered. The Coppercoat finish applied last year has done a fantastic job and kept the hull really clean. Just a thin dark slime has grown. 


....but as you can see, a quick pressure wash and the bottom is back to perfect again! Excellent!

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Brighton Belle is going to Ireland this summer

At the end of May we will take a long voyage of nearly 400 nautical miles to get Brighton Belle to Ireland in a couple of hops of about 2 days. Then we will have gentle potter along the coast visiting the beautiful harbours and inlets looking for that perfect sheltered spot away from the noisy bustle of modern life, before returning to Cork to hand over to the next Skipper and crew.

Each of the following crews will fly to Cork or Shannon airports and share a taxi to get to the boat. They are then in easy reach of the beautiful south west coast of Ireland. The Irish Cruising Club has this to say about it: 'the coast provides some of the most fascinating sailing imaginable with many well sheltered anchorages and endless scope for exploration. The sea is empty of shipping, except for local fishing craft. The scenery is varied and magnificent. The inhabitants are courteous and friendly'. 

See details of the dates and location of cruise on our web-site

If you sign up as crew, you will be spending one or two weeks this summer sailing  and exploring this beautiful area on Brighton Belle.   We look forward to sailing with you.

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Mince pies and mulled wine

Our gathering on Saturday was a great success with about 30 visitors, 60 mince pies, 2 gallons of mulled wine and some fabulous food.

It was really lovely to see Brighton Bell smartly dressed in Christmas lights and full of smiling faces and conversation.

Thanks to all who came to meet us and a really big thank you to Liz for being such a fantastic hostess and for producing such lovely nibbles. Pheasant Yorkshire puds!  

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A man fell over board this Sunday.......four times!

Brighton Belle sailed out of Brighton Marina for a jolly today. With 7 on board we set off to have a little fun and practice some manoeuvres. 

Skipper Phillip, assisted by a willing crew of 6 threw a nominated member of the yachts equipment over the side and shouted 'man over board'.

Lots of action, sail handling and great teamwork had us sailing back and picking up the 'casualty' within about 4 minutes.

In the excited discussion that followed, we talked about boat control and speed of approach and what could have been done better. It was agreed that the recovery had been quite successful. 

Then, extraordinarily, that nominated member of the yacht's equipment, the danbuoy and horseshoe life ring, was over the side again!

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Atlantic coast of France, Pornic to La Rochelle

These are a few photos taken during a weeks cruise along the Atlantic coast of France between Pornic and La Rochelle. I was lucky enough to have a fantastic crew and don't think I have laughed so much in years.

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2011 May day cruise east of Brighton

This was a great day out of Brighton with a group of German friends. The cliffs around Beachy Head were spectacular.



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