Last weekend World Cruising Club hosted its three day Ocean Cruising Seminar at the Holiday Inn, Guildford. It was a great opportunity for delegates to listen to a number of chosen lecturers and meet fellow sailors, many of whom have similar sailing ambitions and plans. Delegates had travelled from across the UK and further afield including Portugal, Netherlands, Monaco and Finland.
The Ocean Cruising Seminar covered in depth, a variety of subjects associated with the planning and preparation required for an ‘Atlantic Circuit’ or round the world voyage. Lecturers were chosen for their wealth of knowledge in their specialist fields. Emphasis was on this year’s 25th anniversary ARC and what to expect in terms of weather and equipment issues. Many of the lecturers have sailed in the rallies and shared their experiences from participating in the events.
Amongst the subjects covered were:
Communications equipment update, incl DSC/GMDSS, Sat-Coms
SSB Installation and usage
Communications and position reporting
Rigging preparation and maintenance; sail choice
Onboard safety equipment; choosing and using
AC/DC Power management and generation
Choosing and running a water-maker
Wind self-steering systems explained
First aid at sea; techniques and medical supplies
Refitting for the Atlantic circuit
Spares and maintenance on board
Provisioning for offshore cruising
Weather Forecasts - sources & interpretation
Women's Sailing Forum
During the breaks delegates were able to chat with lecturers and ask more questions specific to their requirements and to see and get a feel for the products they had available. The floor space outside the seminar room was occupied by water-makers, gas stoves, satellite coms, MOB recovery gear, books, solar panels and a liferaft to mention a few.
Seating plans were changed both evenings so that delegates could meet one another more easily. Saturday evening saw all the delegates looking very smart in their evening wear to sit down to a three course dinner. Robert Holbrook, Managing Director of Admiral Boat Insurance, afterwards shared a short presentation drawing on his own experiences from sailing across the Pacific last year. He referred to the many highlights of ocean cruising that can sometimes be forgotten about in all the planning and preparation.
Now in it’s 10th year the Ocean Cruising Seminar again had very positive feedback with it being viewed as a detailed, insightful and essential weekend. Participants left feeling they had gained a wealth of knowledge, having met many future fellow rally participants and for many it was with a “see you in Las Palmas” that the weekend came to a close.
The scheduled dates for next year’s Ocean Cruising Seminar is 11-13 March 2011.