Copyright 2021 - BBSC

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.


Fri, 31 Jul 2020 15:17:33 +0100

The Great Escape - Stewart Henton

Myself, Chris Anderson, and Phil Helby arrived at Tenerife late evening 29th July on our rescue mission. Wearing masks to avoid recognition we found Brighton Belle in San Miguel marina covered in red Saharan dust and looking very sad. Next day we hosed and scrubbed everything. Clean windows and stainless. Drained and flushed water tanks. Checked all systems and the engine. A good days work.

This morning at 0500hrs under cover of darkness we quietly slipped out and set sail. A nice force 4-5 set BB moving with two reefs in main and genoa. As the sky gradually lightened BB seemed to steadily shake off the memories of floods and six months of dusty lockdown. She was back in her element and puring.
We are just rounding puta sardinia on the north west corner of Gran Canaria on route for Las Palmas where her crew for the return passage to the UK will arrive in a couple of days.
We were passed close by a forty foot whale just now.
All the best to all friends and members from a liberated Brighton Belle.
Stewart with a wide grin.

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Tue, 4 Aug 2020

Hello BBSC Members and friends, 

Brighton Belle arrived in Las Palmas Gran Canaria late last Friday. The following morning Chris Anderson, Phil Helby and Stewart set about the list of maintenance and repair items. As usual as we worked, the list seemed to get longer rather than shorter for a while. Local expertise set about to fit our new gooseneck fitting but as luck would have it, complications intervened so we have refitted the old one with new fixings so all good. We have had the rigging checked by two dynamo riggers. They arrived at BB and the skinny one was hoisted without winch handle by his heavier colleague to the top of the mizzen mast within minutes of their arrival. Skinny shook and pulled and looked at everything from the top down swinging from side to side like a trapeze artist. A sprint to the main mast and up to the top in 30 seconds and again a very thorough inspection. I was told our baby stay had a cracked strand at the top and bottom. When it was pointed out to me I could hardly see it but skinny had seen it in a glance. Amazing. My heart sank at the thought of delay but they fitted a new stay this afternoon. Stars. Mike, Bill, Petra, and Sevdalina have joined the boat and joined in to tackle that list. Now all done. 
We have also done a vast amount of shopping. To feed six people for three weeks with no corner shops available en route sets a real challenge. What to buy and how much and where to store it. Packet milk below the galley floor for example. We even have a bag of cucumbers and courgettes hanging into the keel which is considered the coolest place outside the fridge. (which is completely full of course) - BB never knowingly underprovisioned! 
After a lovely meal at a restaurant recommended by George (good call George) we are now all sleeping our last full night for the next three weeks or so. Into the watch system tomorrow. Working in pairs. Four hours on eight hours off. All sharing sailing, steering, cooking and cleaning and a few laughs until we get back to Old England. Fair well and adieu......... 

Please make offerings to Neptune to give us fair winds and gentle seas. 

Stewart

Thur, 6 Aug 2020 - BB return day 1- settling in to the routine

Hello BBSC members, family and friends

All good on board!

We departed Gran Canaria yesterday morning, carefully picking our way out of the busy port, past large numbers of anchored cargo boats and some large old oil platforms. We passed under the stern of a container ship bound for Madeira and, once safely clear of everything, set our sails to sail close hauled on port tack in a northeasterly direction.

Once we'd cleared the large swell close to the island, we settled into a comfortable sail and started our watch system: three pairs of two, taking turns to do two hours on during the middle of the day, and four on hour's per watch between 1600 and 1200.

We're settling into the routine now, always takes a while to find sea legs again and to get used to different sleep patterns.

In the wee hours we spotted the twinkling lights of Lanzarote a few miles away in the distance. Tempting though they appeared, we tacked away and headed off into the moonlit night.

We're currently at 29deg 28.1N and 014deg 30.8W, motorsailing, as the wind dropped from an average of around 12-15 to less than 10. Sevdalina and Mike have been cooking ratatouille, so we're looking forward to our main meal of the day.

All good here, and BB is very happy to be homeward bound.

Stewart
06.08.20


Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Fri, 7 Aug 2020 1600

Dear BBSC members and friends.

Our position 7 Aug 20. 12.00 UTC.
30⁰44.3N 015⁰ 55.7W

We have spent the last 24 hrs heading NW from Lanzarote area and Madeira is now 120 miles away bearing 340 degrees. With this wind of 11knots we are sailing in smooth seas close hauled at 6 knots and making a COG of 320. Warm and sunny. Tee shirts and shorts. Glorious.

The forecast tells us of low wind area covering the Madeira area and extending North for a couple of days so we will try to keep in the wind a little if possible by heading North from here passing Madeira to the East. As I type the wind has dropped so engine on for a while.

We had not planned to stop in Madeira to avoid quarantine restrictions etc but it's there as a safe haven for a few days if required.

We're settling into our watch routines nicely and all getting plenty of rest and sleep between watches. Having a bit of trouble figuring out what food is stashed away and where... Milk under the galley floorboards; 160 (!) eggs, chocolate and biscuits behind one of the seatbacks; various vegetables in string bags hanging in the forepeak and Keel; chorizo and other Spanish sausage.

Phil and Bill have just produced a mixed salad dish named Durham and Devon surprise which was delicious. The culinary competition is hotting up!

The middle of the day is where we are all awake and can chat and do little jobs. Stewart brought his sextant so a sun sight was taken at local noon where the sun is highest on the sky before beginning its descent once more to sunset. Now the complicated calls to get a position.

No mutiny and smiling faces so all good aboard BB at the moment.

Best wishes
Stewart
1600 7-8-

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Sat, 8 Aug 2020 17:34:54 +0100

Well, it's been an eventful day after a beautiful night on the ocean!

Last night we saw a glorious sunset, followed by the most amazing starry skies - the Great Bear looked close enough to touch, with lots of other constellations and the Milky Way clearly visible. As we motorsailed north towards Madeira, a huge orange moon appeared under a blanket of black clouds, slowly rising through the clouds and showing his smily waning face as it climbed higher.

Early in the morning we were visited by a pod of dolphins frolicking around us for a while. Then, after we'd passed the Islas Desertas and were approaching Madeira, a group of Minke whales came to say hello.

Stewart decided that we might as well call into Madeira to fill up fuel and water tanks. We weren't able to raise anyone at Quinta da Lorde marina until we were just outside - turns out the office isn't staffed on Saturdays, which is perhaps just as well - most probably they would have turned us away due to ongoing restrictions because of Covid 19. When we finally managed to make contact, the fuel man quizzed us as to where we had come from and did we really absolutely need fuel and water.... By this point we were a fait accompli, just rounding the corner, and the guy, in mask and gloves, took our lines - calling to us not to set foot ashore. We filled up and left promptly, Stewart masterfully reversing out of the narrow entrance while the rest of us looked on with trepidation!

We've just rounded the Sao Lorenco lighthouse and are heading NW to continue our journey. The sea is flat, knots of breeze - a line of stronger wind ahead...

Petra
08.08.20

Sun, 9 August 2020

We're into the low wind area now, though last night turned out better than expected and we still managed to sail for several hours on calm seas. This morning the wind dropped further, so we motored for a while to continue our northward progress. Just now we're sailing again, 9 knots of NNW wind, giving us 5 knots over the ground.

We're currently at 34deg 24.6 N, 016deg 28.2 W - appr. 100 miles north of Madeira, continuing in a northerly direction. So far we've been averaging 120 miles per day - 1,100 to go.

Watch mates Phil and Bill are playing daily cribbage matches in their breaks. Bill, after a bit of initial coaching from master player Phil, quickly picked up the challenge, though at the moment is trailing behind at 2 matches to 1. Early days!

Sunday lunch was delicious! Thanks to the efforts of Sevdalina and Mike (newly promoted from kitchen hand to sous chef!), we had steak with a leek and mushroom bake accompanied by potatoes and carrots. We gave it two Michelin stars! Apart from Bill, we are all carnivores, but we're managing to make meals where the meat can easily be replaced with a vegetarian option.

Stewart and Bill are using the sextant each day to take various readings and calculate our position. To the rest of us this looks like a very dark art indeed!

Life on board is calm and well-organised, with a list of daily checks and a morning cleaning routine to complete - both keeping BB shipshape.

The weather is warm, everyone is healthy - all happy here.

Stewart and Petra
09.08.20

PS Correction to yesterday's report: we saw pilot whales, not minkes - sorry got that wrong.

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Mon, 10 Aug 2020 18:47:20 +0100

Brighton Belle Return- Day 6 - North of Gibraltar

Dear BBSC members and friends
Our position at 1800 BST
36⁰02.7'N 015⁰ 56.4'W
We are 500 miles West of Gibraltar under a big sky on a deep blue empty ocean.

Calm seas and light winds through last night. Warm and sunny today and light winds continue so we motor sailed for 22 hours. The wind has just swung to the East so we are now enjoying glorious quiet, with motor off, and sailing North.

A tiny turtle swam past us at lunchtime, looking rather lost in the very big ocean. We hope it survives and arrives safely at whatever destination it's heading for.

To pass the time, we've been writing BB adaptations of well-known songs... not quite ready to be aired, but be prepared for some renditions by our resident shanty duo Bill and Phil.

Lunch today was also courtesy of Bill and Phil - delicious vegetable stew with cheesy dumplings and Marmite as a not-so-secret special ingredient. The only thing missing were turnips - probably unsurprisingly, none to be found on Gran Canaria, much to the disappointment of Bill, who (together with wife Sue) was recently notified by his local Sainsbury's that they were the biggest purchasers of turnips in the store :-)

We're munching our way through our large stores of fresh fruit and veg, regular inspections and fridge rearranging by Sevdalina is keeping everything in order. We did find some rather poorly bananas today - great excuse for baking delicious banana bread. As a consequence no cases of scurvy have been logged. No other viruses either so it looks like we are now clear.

The daily weather forecast download had me smiling and we seem set fair for England.

All the best to you.

Stewart and Petra 1800hrs 10 August 2020


Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Tues, 11 August 2020

BB Return Day 7

Last night we changed continents, leaving the northern tip of Africa and the Strait of Gibraltar about 500 miles to starboard and now sailing about 250 miles off the coast of Portugal: 37deg 32.7N, 014deg, 35.1W as at 18:48.

We've had a steady northerly breeze today and are making about 6 knots, currently heading in the approximate direction of Porto though will tack again before long to continue our northerly progress.

All good on board. Last night we had a visit from another school of dolphins - they flitted about alongside of us and spent ages ducking and diving under our bow. A couple even jumped vertically out of the water and belly-flopped back with a big splash. Stewart managed to capture a fantastic video - something else we look forward to sharing with you when we get back.

Not much else to report from this vast open space around us. Oh, we did encounter a couple of ships today, which seemed odd after having the ocean to ourselves for so long.

And then there was Mike's magnificent save of this morning! We had quite a lot of swell, so a bit of buffeting about down below. Mike was walking from the galley to the saloon table with a cup of coffee just as BB's nose dipped down another wave. Mike fell sideways onto the saloon seat but miraculously managed to keep pretty much all the coffee in his mug by lifting it high and then switching it from right to left hand in mid-fall! Neither Mike nor the coffee were harmed in what seemed like a slow motion comedy sketch. When asked how he managed this amazing feat, Mike commented drily: "I knew where the horizon was."

That's all for today. All the best from a calm sunlit ocean. Hope everyone at home is doing well.

Stewart and crew
11.08.20 19:15

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Wed, 11 Aug 2020 18:15

BB return to UK - Day 8

Dear BBSC members and friends,

Well, we've survived our first week at sea! We're all healthy, and and we're all still on speaking terms :-) AND we're making good progress towards Cape Finisterre. So all ok on board BB.

The wind has been pretty much northerly for the past 24 hours, up to about 18-20 knots during the night, now lighter at around 12-15.

We've had some biggish swell, on and off, but generally the sea is flat, making for lovely sailing.

We're still doing long tacks in the Atlantic to work our way up to Biscay. We're currently at 38⁰ 53.0N 013⁰ 28.6W, just North of Lisbon and 190 miles offshore so we still need to get higher up the Portuguese coast.

Not much else to report today. We're about halfway in our journey, with these middle days feeling a bit long and samey and we are wondering what is happening in the rest of the world. On the other hand, we're happy that the weather gods are being kind to us - and BB is doing us proud!

We hope all is good with you.
Stewart and crew.

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Thursday 13 August 1700

BB Return Day 9

Hello all.

Our position at 1700 BST
40⁰26.8N 012⁰11.1W
160 miles West of Aveiro Portugal.

After a long night motoring in very light wind and calm seas, the breeze built sufficiently to sail once more. As forecast the NE trade wind which has been on our nose since leaving Gran Canaria is slowly giving way to westerly breezes, so we are now able to ease sheets slightly. After eight days sailing into the wind we now have hope for some easier sailing. The Skipper is looking forward to hoisting the spinnaker in a couple of days for a 500 mile spinnaker run to Plymouth. :-)

Bright blue sea and clear blue skies here in a vast empty ocean. At night the clear skies give a beautiful star show. Venus rises brightly in the East around 10pm followed by the moon which had started our journey full and very bright and is now a steadily decreasing crescent. I expect we shall arrive in Plymouth at new moon. Some amazing meteors create light trails across the black sky that last for minutes. It is so lovely to have time just to notice the movement of our planet and see the progression of our time by the heavens.

The meal at lunch is a great highlight to each day. Everyone is awake and chatting and catching up with other watches and their experiences. Today it was pizzas with fried courgette and homemade baked beans on the side. Yum. Fresh vegetables reducing. A couple of sad casualties. Iceburg lettuces that could not fit in the fridge were placed in the bilge and forgotten. Liquid lettuce anyone? We still have enough food to go round once more though. Brighton Belle. 'never knowingly under provisioned'.

Water tanks dipped. We have 750 litres remaining. Fuel remaining 780 litres so, with luck, plenty of both to get us home. Engine checks done regularly. Since leaving GC we have done 84 engine hours and have not needed to top up cooling water or engine oil in that time. Skippers note.


All the best from Brighton Belle.

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Fri, 14 Aug 2020

BB Return Day 10

Hello everyone.

We had to motor all through last night and most of this morning, in very light wind now south westerly. We're getting close to Cape Finisterre:
At 1900 on Fri 14 August we are at 42deg 38.8N, 10deg 43.6W - 1169 miles since we left Gran Canaria and just 540 miles from Plymouth.

We should reach Finisterre tomorrow morning and are planning to celebrate with smoked salmon for breakfast :-)

We were looking forward to fresher winds for our Biscay crossing, but sadly today's weather forecast is showing very light airs for the whole of the crossing and also for the last stretch to Plymouth. We have fuel remaining for about 100 hours of motoring, so will need to economise and might have to refuel in Brittany.

In the spirit of economising, Stewart sneaked off to the forepeak after lunch to prepare the cruising chute... As per usual it needed some untangling and untwisting, involving a bit of colourful language, but was soon laid out on deck ready to hoist. There was excitement in the galley at the same time, as Sevdalina had prepared a large dish of creme caramel to go in the oven just at that moment. It was touch and go, as the creme caramel mixture was vigorously sloshing back and forth, but the gimbal saved the day!

At this point we decided a cup of tea was required before any further effort could be undertaken in the hot afternoon sun. And guess what, the gas bottle decided to run out, causing disruption to both the creme caramel and the spinnaker hoist!

Gas bottle replaced, tea made and drunk, and back to the spinnaker hoist. Up it went and it's now flying nicely, increasing our speed by about 2 knots.

Please keep all fingers crossed that we'll get a little more wind than forecast for the next leg of our passage.

Greetings to all from Petra, Stewart and crew.

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Sat, 15 August 2020
BB Return Day 11 - Into Biscay


Hello all BBSC members and friends.

Our position at 2000 Saturday 15th August
44⁰ 36.1 N 009⁰ 33.7W. Now 100 miles NW of La Coruna.

Early this morning we passed Cape Finisterre, the NE corner of Spain, and entered into the bay of Biscay. We were watched over by many cumulus clouds, some with localised but fairly heavy downpours. Our wet weather clothing got used for the first time on this voyage.

After hearing about France being added to the quarantine countries last evening we have decided to head straight for Plymouth so have passed by La Coruna and have set course to pass West of île d'Ouessant at the Western tip of Brittany, some 360 miles away.

The wind has rotated and we are now sailing downwind and making good speed. The Atlantic swell is rolling us around a little so care is needed moving around the boat and when working in the galley as things have a habit of sliding about.

In spite of that we celebrated entering Biscay with a lovely brunch of scottish salmon smoked in spain served on danish cream cheese on German rye bread, all topped with spanish avocado. Fabulous international cuisine aboard BB.

We stocked for about 3 weeks to be safe, so we are now eating rather well to make best use of the surplus.

We sailed with the spinnaker from about 7 this morning but sadly had an accident with it around midday where it got torn once more so it is off the sailing menu for now.

As I write this the watch has changed from Mike and Sevdalina (1600 to 2000hrs) to Phil and Bill (2000 to 2400hrs). As the wind has built a little through the day, they have collectively put a single reef in the main for the night watches but we are still making well over 6 knots.

The forecast is for lighter winds tomorrow but we are hoping for more of the same as it feels we made great progress without the rumble of the engine today.

All the best from us here.
Stewart and crew.


Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Sun, 16 August 2020

BB return to UK - Day 12

It's 1830 on Sunday, and we're making great progress. We're at
042deg 13.5 N
008deg 16.4 W
11 knots of wind on the beam, lovely sailing on a beautiful flat sea in glorious sunshine. We managed to sail through most of the night, so good 'zeds' for the off-watchers and everyone well-rested for Sunday. The wind dropped this morning, so we motored for a few hours. Now back sailing - how lucky are we!

Traffic around us is increasing, with plenty of ships passing us but at several miles' distance. We have 190nm to go to our waypoint west of the traffic separation scheme off the Île d'Ouessant.

Continuing our efforts to get through our three weeks' supply of food, we have eaten exceedingly well today. Mike and Sevdalina had been planning lunch for the last three days, and most of the morning was spent cooking. We had asparagus wrapped in ham (cheese for Bill) and topped with Dijon mustard mayo for starters. Main course was steak (veg pie for Bill) with chasseur sauce, roast potatoes, green beans and broccoli. And for pudding.... chocolate mousse with the last of our fresh oranges. All very yummy indeed!

Now we're thinking about one-pot meals for the next few days as all this fancy cuisine is creating lots of washing up and our water supply is dwindling!

We hope to reach Ouessant early Tuesday morning to coincide with the favourable tidal stream - and well before the 30-knot winds forecast for later on Wednesday in the western approaches to the Channel.

We're all looking forward to nice long showers, and celebratory food and drink ashore!

Greetings to all
Stewart and crew

Mon, 17 Aug 2020

BB Return Day 13

17th Aug 20
1500hrs
Our position 47⁰50.0N 006⁰ 56.2W
Crossing the continental shelf and approaching the tip of Brittany.

Under a warm blue sky on a smooth sea with no wind. Desperate. No sailing so not much activity. We are all going crazy and looking for jobs to do. Mike is updating the inventory of charts. Petra is baking French apple tart to mark our passing of Brittany. Sevdalina claims her brain is taking a holiday today - and we don't blame it, as she's spent the past two weeks organising and re-organising the fridge, dry stores and veg in the forepeak. Stewart is grumpy because he can't tweak any sails. The ensign, too, has joined the general droopiness of the day.

Uh-oh, looks like the mizzen staysail is about to go up! And Stewart is talking about getting ready to pole out the genoa so that we can goose wing when the promised 12 knots from astern appear. Let's hope they come soon to give us something to do...

Greetings from BB, Stewart and crew

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Tue, 18 Aug 2020

Hello all
BB Return Day 14
Our position at 2100 BST 18th August
50⁰06.4N 004⁰28.7W
Approaching Eddystone rocks just south of Plymouth.
Through last night we passed île ďOuessant at the Western tip of Brittany, avoiding many large commercial vessels carrying goods out of the channel and on to places like the Mediterranean, Africa, the Americas etc. We passed without incident into the Channel and set a course for Plymouth some 110 miles further on.

The sky filled with grey cloud and the sea took on a dark green hue rather than the sparkling deep blue we had become used to over the last couple of weeks. Those clouds delivered us some torrential rain a couple of times through the morning as we sailed with Genoa pulled out or motor sailed directly down wind toward our first stop in the UK.

The met office forecast for Plymouth sea area at 0700 this morning was for SW 3 to 5 increasing 5 to 6 possibly gale force 8 later. So I thank our fortune that our arrival to a sheltered harbour will be just in time.

We have eaten well as usual and have been careful to make the last drops in the water tanks last, but it has been a quiet day between us. Thoughts of arrival, long uninterrupted sleeps, showers, telephone connections, getting back to family etc. and generally getting back to normal life has, I think been occupying our thoughts through the day.

We should pass into Plymouth sound tonight. I understand that the members of Brighton Belle sailing club are running a sweepstakes on our arrival time so I will record the time we pass the Plymouth breakwater for you.

I expect to arrive into Mayflower marina in the early hours. Tomorrow will be interesting as we try to convince the authorities that we have completed our quarantine period while on route but that's another day.

All the best from Brighton Belle.

Stewart and crew.

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.

Wed, 19 Aug 2020

BB Return - Arrival

Our position at 1200hrs 19th August 50⁰21.7N 004⁰ 10.04W alongside the outer breakwater of Mayflower marina in Plymouth.

After a long day crossing the Western English Channel, Brighton Belle entered Plymouth Sound. We passed the breakwater light at 0009hrs on the 19th August. Who was closest in the sweepstake I wonder?

A great change to all of us on board: after so many days with only distant ships to indicate the existence of other people on the planet, we were now surrounded by boats of all sizes and the many lights of Plymouth in the dark night. We hauled down mainsail and mizzen and made our way around Drakes Island, into the Tamar river to arrive at Mayflower marina. Called them on the radio to be told that they only have space on the outside of the breakwater that protects the marina from the incoming waves, so no breakwater between us and the waves of the impending storm. We tied up as best we could, had some celebratory drinks and got to a well earned sleep by about 0300hrs. I climbed up on deck at 0700hrs to see BB bouncing up and down against her fenders and being pressed onto the breakwater by gale force winds. We had clearly arrived just in time to avoid a significant storm at sea. Very happy to be in safely.

I went to the marina office later in the morning to enquire about current regulations etc. and spoke on the phone with Border Control and the Port Health authority.

I was told by Border Control that they did not know that latest requirements but said that the rules had changed. The Port health authority confirmed that time at sea is no longer accepted as quarantine time. So despite literally, not having seen anybody for 14 days, being out on the ocean, we now had to go into self isolation for 14 days!  I am told that the 14 day period started when when entered UK territory not when we left the last foreign territory. Ho hum. Clearly there is no logic to this but rules is rules. The officer I spoke with agreed.

Phil has now left the boat for his home nearby. Where he must self isolate, but his family do not have to which is good news for them.

I guess remaining crew will isolate on BB but fortunately the rules are silly enough to allow us to move from port to port, so if the gales that are raging as I write this, subside, we shall move BB toward the Solent over the next week or so.

We moved BB from that uncomfortable berth to Queen Anne's battery marina close to the Barbican in the old part of Plymouth this afternoon and now sit on a comfortable berth in the shelter of a breakwater as the wind blows 40 knots above us. 

This voyage has been a great adventure with some beautiful sailing and great team work. BB has sailed 1716 Nautical miles from Gran Canaria and looked after us all the way. She really is a fantastic ocean going yacht. 

I thank Phil, Bill, Mike, Petra, and Sevdalina for their hard work, determination, good humour through this adventure. Without them BB would still be in lonely lockdown.

To the crew... hip hip hoorah.

And I thank all members and friends for your interest and support. Look out for plans of BB's future cruises and come and join in. We look forward to hearing about your own adventures on BB.

Signing off.

Stewart and crew.

 

Comments

Bob Williams on Wednesday, 05 August 2020 06:38
Well done & stay safe

Good to hear that all is progressing well, though I'm sure we'd like to know why you had to revert to the original gooseneck fitting.

I really like the account of the rigging check.

Keep these reports coming - and could we hear from some of the crew, please?

1
Good to hear that all is progressing well, though I'm sure we'd like to know why you had to revert to the original gooseneck fitting. I really like the account of the rigging check. Keep these reports coming - and could we hear from some of the crew, please?
Bob Williams on Wednesday, 05 August 2020 16:20
Under way

They're off. Follow their progress using the "Where is she now?" menu.

2
They're off. Follow their progress using the "Where is she now?" menu.
Bob Williams on Friday, 07 August 2020 06:07
AIS Out of Range

They are no longer visible on Marine Traffic or Vessel Finder, but nothing to worry about, it just means they're out of range of the shore-based AIS receivers.
So where will they pop up on our screens? Portugal or the Azores? Maybe Madeira? My bet is they will continue to beat north eastwards towards Portugal, as that is where the wind is, albeit in a northerly direction.
With luck, we will have a glimpse of the passage plan in the next report.

2
They are no longer visible on Marine Traffic or Vessel Finder, but nothing to worry about, it just means they're out of range of the shore-based AIS receivers. So where will they pop up on our screens? Portugal or the Azores? Maybe Madeira? My bet is they will continue to beat north eastwards towards Portugal, as that is where the wind is, albeit in a northerly direction. With luck, we will have a glimpse of the passage plan in the next report. :)
George Molony on Friday, 07 August 2020 16:20
Good Going

Well done to the Delivery crew. Well under way now and seem to be enjoying the trip. There are loads of questions for you all, but they'll have to wait. I think a post delivery social to hear all about it is called for. Covid 19 permitting.

3
Well done to the Delivery crew. Well under way now and seem to be enjoying the trip. There are loads of questions for you all, but they'll have to wait. I think a post delivery social to hear all about it is called for. Covid 19 permitting.
Bob Williams on Saturday, 08 August 2020 14:48

I like the idea of a post-delivery party!

2
I like the idea of a post-delivery party!
Matt Ledger on Thursday, 13 August 2020 19:27
Great progress!

Hopefully there will be many stories - maybe Phil and Bill can do a rendition of the shanty they're singing on the voyage.

2
Hopefully there will be many stories - maybe Phil and Bill can do a rendition of the shanty they're singing on the voyage.
Bob Williams on Saturday, 08 August 2020 14:46
Great pictures

Thanks for the pictures, team. I almost feel we're onboard with you!

1
Thanks for the pictures, team. I almost feel we're onboard with you! :D
Bob Williams on Sunday, 09 August 2020 17:00
Sextants and dark arts

I have to agree that sextants seem to be arcane instruments that only the grand masters of navigation can use. George and I 'assisted' on a transatlantic crossing; the skipper Ian called out 'now' (or something similar), George took the time, Ian read out the angle and I wrote it all down. I felt very proud of the part I played.

2
I have to agree that sextants seem to be arcane instruments that only the grand masters of navigation can use. George and I 'assisted' on a transatlantic crossing; the skipper Ian called out 'now' (or something similar), George took the time, Ian read out the angle and I wrote it all down. I felt very proud of the part I played. :D
Bob Williams on Sunday, 09 August 2020 17:02
Sextants and dark arts

If you buy George a beer, he will show you the Harrison's clock he used.

2
If you buy George a beer, he will show you the Harrison's clock he used. ;)
Bob Williams on Thursday, 13 August 2020 17:45
Venus? Or something else?

Hmm. Day 9. I'm not sure that's Venus you're seeing rise in the east around 10pm. Venus rises in the east just before dawn (as the morning star) or sets in the west just after sunset (as the evening star). You might have been seeing Jupiter, Saturn or Mars.

2
Hmm. Day 9. I'm not sure that's Venus you're seeing rise in the east around 10pm. Venus rises in the east just before dawn (as the morning star) or sets in the west just after sunset (as the evening star). You might have been seeing Jupiter, Saturn or Mars.
Matt Ledger on Thursday, 13 August 2020 19:26
Great progress!

Great progress everyone! Very jealous I can't be with you and grateful for your commitment to BB rescue mission. Keep the reports coming - look forward to them every evening.

3
Great progress everyone! Very jealous I can't be with you and grateful for your commitment to BB rescue mission. Keep the reports coming - look forward to them every evening.
Fiona Bernard on Thursday, 13 August 2020 20:01
Compelling!

I am so enjoying hearing the exciting progress of BB and her glorious crew. The day to day detail and routine of life is allowing us all a bit of an escape!
Thinking of adventure in these times is liberating.
Thanks to you adventurous souls...and really looking forward to my future adventures too on BB.
Keep it up.

4
I am so enjoying hearing the exciting progress of BB and her glorious crew. The day to day detail and routine of life is allowing us all a bit of an escape! Thinking of adventure in these times is liberating. Thanks to you adventurous souls...and really looking forward to my future adventures too on BB. Keep it up.
Joan on Friday, 14 August 2020 06:45
Daily pick-me up

⛵ Loving your daily news from on board. pure escapism as I imagine myself there with you. and recall fondly fomer blue water trips on BB too.
Thanks for taking the time to share with us.

4
⛵ Loving your daily news from on board. pure escapism as I imagine myself there with you. and recall fondly fomer blue water trips on BB too. Thanks for taking the time to share with us.
Bob Williams on Friday, 14 August 2020 08:56
Daily pick-me up

I agree, definitely a high point reading these reports. Especially those with little anecdotes - Mike juggling a full coffee cup.

0
I agree, definitely a high point reading these reports. Especially those with little anecdotes - Mike juggling a full coffee cup.
Joan on Friday, 14 August 2020 21:24
willing for wind

So hope you get some decent wind for a good sail. It can be frustrating on BB, when you really want to get all the canvas out, and appreciate the silence of the ocean.

2
So hope you get some decent wind for a good sail. It can be frustrating on BB, when you really want to get all the canvas out, and appreciate the silence of the ocean.
Joan on Friday, 14 August 2020 21:26
Cordon Bleu

The eating sounds pretty good. Creme Caramel ?!? Surely that's a BB first?

1
The eating sounds pretty good. Creme Caramel ?!? Surely that's a BB first?
Bob Williams on Saturday, 15 August 2020 06:19

It beats the usual ham sandwiches that I offer when we're underway.

0
It beats the usual ham sandwiches that I offer when we're underway. ;)
George Molony on Saturday, 15 August 2020 06:32
She’s Coming Home

Great blogs. Are we having a sweepstake on ETA Plymouth? My go first. 9am Wednesday at the breakwater.
Stewart seems to be keeping up the BB traditions. Never knowingly under canvassed!
Better message him about the new restrictions re France and having to isolate for 14 days?
Stay safe.

1
Great blogs. Are we having a sweepstake on ETA Plymouth? My go first. 9am Wednesday at the breakwater. Stewart seems to be keeping up the BB traditions. Never knowingly under canvassed! Better message him about the new restrictions re France and having to isolate for 14 days? Stay safe.
Bob Williams on Saturday, 15 August 2020 06:43

I have told them about the new quarantine restrictions, but it doesn't sound like they got the message. I am also trying SMS, which they should pick up if the get close enough to land to get a phone signal.

2
I have told them about the new quarantine restrictions, but it doesn't sound like they got the message. I am also trying SMS, which they should pick up if the get close enough to land to get a phone signal.
Paul Taylor on Saturday, 15 August 2020 07:47
3pm Wednesday

I think they going to take a bit of a detour to fuel up in Brittany so I'll call it 3pm Wednesday.

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I think they going to take a bit of a detour to fuel up in Brittany so I'll call it 3pm Wednesday.

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