Temple News August 2015 - Royal Temple Yacht Club



Temple News August 2015 - Royal Temple Yacht Club
August 2015
Dear all,
The focus throughout July was on preparing
for Ramsgate Week. Planning for the week
started many months ago but there is an
inevitable push required during the final runin.
Ramsgate Week was once again a huge
success, running during the final days of July.
As I write this on 3 August the events of last
week seem all to merge into one.
combination of strong winds early in the week,
leading to very challenging sailing conditions
and a full-on programme of brilliant
entertainment meant that there was barely a
moment to draw breath.
The week itself will be covered in more detail
elsewhere in this Newsletter, but I would like
to record, on behalf of all Members, our
grateful thanks and appreciation to all who
played a part, especially The Ramsgate Week
Sailing and Entertainments Committees and
their Chairmen who all worked tirelessly to
ensure that our competitors and visitors had a
week to remember.
Last month I wrote about the funeral of one of
our Past Commodores, Frank Roberts, and
the moving eulogy given by his daughter Lucy
at his funeral. Members have asked that this
be included in this month’s Newsletter so it
appears in full, herein.
Summer seems to have arrived over the past
few days, so enjoy it while it lasts!
Frank Martin
JULY 2015
No 21
Mrs J Brammer
Mr N Rawbone
Mr N Blackburn
Ms P Johnson
Thanks also to our Staff, ably led by Carol
Jackson and Barry Stone, who all did a
fantastic job. And thanks also to the members
of Broadstairs Sailing Club who provided
essential support both on and off the water.
The job of holding Ramsgate Week would be
very much more difficult without their
contribution; so many, many thanks to BSC.
Later in August, in fact on the Bank Holiday
Monday, Broadstairs Sailing Club will be
hosting the annual Dyson Dash race series
together with fund raising activities in support
of Pilgrim’s Hospice. I hope as many RTYC
members as possible will support the on the
water event and the other fund raising
activities. It is a very worthy cause and one
that is very close to the members of BSC.
They deserve our support.
Mr G Hobbs (A)
Next Draw
Sunday 30 August 2015
to make a fool of themselves by dressing up on
the 80's and Pirates nights!
Work begins again soon on 2016 and put the
dates in your diary Sunday 24th July to 29th
29th August
9th September
26th September
17th October
25th October
31st October
6th December
13th December
19th December
31st December
Tony Lovell plays the Bar
Commemorative Cream Tea
Officers Reunion
Trafalgar Night
Racing Crews Lunch
Prize Giving
Children's Christmas Party
Christmas Dinner -members only (Black Tie)
New Year’s Dinner and live music.
The crew of Outlaw dressed for the rain on the
Ramsgate Week was amazing!
Strong winds at the start of the week made for
testing conditions with more than one casualty but
then the sun came out and the winds settled down
and everyone I have spoken to said it was the best
in recent years! And I have had some lovely
emails from visiting yachts thanking everyone!
The Mayor of Ramsgate, Trevor Shonk, being
photographed starting the first race
I had a great time playing the roving reporter for
the Ramsgate Week Facebook and Twitter sites,
whether it be taking fun photos on the pontoon,
touring Port Control, escorting the Mayor with
Davena Green or assisting in the Race Hut. If
anyone out there does Facebook or Twitter then
make sure you 'like' the site and have a read back
through the entries and look at the photos to
remind yourself of what a great week we had. I
have enclosed a selection of photos from the
week, if anyone wants copies they can be emailed
to you, just speak to me.
The bands all proved a great success, in particular
the Moments on the Sunday evening and the
Hyper Active band on the Wednesday. Everyone
was up dancing, how we all found the energy
amazes me! And thank you to everyone prepared
The crew of Rollerskate mixing the club cocktail at
prize giving
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]
Stuart Carter has kindly provided this
nautical quiz
1. What was the name of Sir Francis
Chichester’s boat that he used for his
1066-67 circumnavigation?
2. Who is the most decorated Olympic
Sailor (based on number and colour of
3. What is the current world speed sailing
record in knots (averaged over 500m),
held by Sailing Rocket II: 62.34, 65.45,
64.25, 63.54
The crew of Assassin winners of the Gold Cup
4. Which of the following locations is on the
highest latitude (numerically ignoring
hemispheres): Cape of Good hope, Cape
Horn, Aberdeen, Quebec
5. According to traditional flag etiquette
which of the following is the correct order
of precedence for flying flags on board:
 Masthead/stern/port
spreader/starboard spreader
 Stern/Starboard spreader/port
Davena, Bob and Bibi 'helping!!!!' me serve
competitors’ cocktails!
 Stern/masthead/starboard
spreader/port spreader
So moving on, at the end of this month, Saturday
29th August, we have Alan Lovell, current lead
singer of the Swinging Blue Jeans performing in
the club from 8pm onwards. Should be a great
evening! Please encourage friends to come along
 Masthead/starboard spreader/port
6. What do you call the act of naming all 32
points of the compass in order clockwise
7. What year was the first Whitbread Race
Then on the 9th September we have a Cream
Tea to celebrate Queen Elizabeth becoming our
longest reigning monarch. This can be taken with
or without bubbles - Prosecco. We will get the
booking sheets out for that soon as the last one
proved very popular.
8. Who or what was a loblolly boy?
9. What Nuclear-powered submarine passed
under the North Pole in 1958?
10. Which Port Authority was fined £4M in
1999 because of the Sea Empress Oil
I am about to start planning the events for the
autumn and winter so, as usual, if anyone has any
suggestions then please do not hesitate to speak
to me.
Solution on Page 10
Entertainments Chairman
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]
failed to cross the start line and, equally true
to form, Norma produced a ‘full English’ as we
retired. So leaving the racing to the big boys
the day was not a complete loss. Again we
were pleased to act as the clubs corporate
boat this year during Ramsgate Week and
with the help of Tommy and Sue took a party
out on Thursday, zig zagging all over the
racing area in order to watch some very
exciting action in all of the classes
It is wonderful to be back and great to see the
Club in such fine fettle. Ramsgate Week was,
in my humble opinion, a huge success and the
cruising side of our club seems to be going
from strength to strength, especially with the
upcoming East Coast cruise being so heavily
supported. We would have loved to go along
(thanks for the invite, Dennis), but it is grown
up time again for us and we really have to get
back to work.
Before our journey fades into a distant
memory and we get bogged down in the
humdrum of normal life, both Norma and I
thought it was important that we take the time
to give a special thanks to all of the members
who gave us such a great welcome home.
When we were met by a mini flotilla in
Ramsgate roads, apparently organised
through an email campaign by that stalwart of
the club Elizabeth, it really felt like we were
home at last and later in the club the welcome
was simply overwhelming.
That’s it from us, thank you all for being you,
and keep up the good work.
Paul and Norma Russell
(and, of course, Spectra)
So what have we been up to since we came
home? Having completed just shy of 13,000
miles over the last 11 months we decided that
this was Spectra’s year to make a mark in the
Round Goodwin’s Race. True to form, we
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]
An excerpt from the
Royal Southern Report
Champagne Joseph Perrier July Regatta
With a very successful Ramsgate week now
behind us, it’s time to organise this month’s
Racing Programme.
Spectacular conditions and close racing
for the Royal Southern YC Champagne
Joseph Perrier July Regatta.
forego the pleasure of collecting his liquid Joseph
Firstly, our Race Hut Team are away for this
Sunday’s (8th August) Summer 3. Any volunteers
available to help in the Race Hut on Sunday
please contact Carol or myself.
Perrier reward for winning IRC2 with Stiletto. Instead
Sunday 16th August
For John Barrett, however, the distance involved in
returning to his Ramsgate home meant he had to
Summer 4
crew Prue Nash did the honours at a packed
Saturday 22nd August
Offshore 6
Race to Gravelines. Any boats intending to take
part please contact Carol with the following info:
clubhouse prize-giving.
‘We were the lowest rated boat in the class and were
really chuffed to do so well – it was champagne
sailing, literally in this case,’ said Prue, adding: ‘It was
a fantastic regatta and really well organised.’
The east coast based First 35 responded well to mixed
Boat name
Draught and Beam
We will then book moorings for the night.
conditions in The Solent, which saw solid breeze on
Saturday topping out at over 20-knots give way to light
Sunday 30th August
airs early Sunday before the sea breeze restored ideal
racing conditions for the concluding race.
Summer 5
Finally we have the Dyson Dash on the 31st of
this month. More info nearer the time.
Stiletto posted a 1-2-4-1 score-line to finish ahead of
Roger Bowden’s Dufour 40 Nifty Drifter and Robbie
Fair winds and happy sailing.
Steve Stokes
RC Sailing
and Lis Robinson’s First 35 Hot Rats.
‘We had our worst result in the light but when it got up
to 15 knots we were really in our element in just the
right range for our sails,’ said Prue. ‘She was just
going really, really well. We had Mike Relling at the
back doing a lot of the trim, a bit of the great and the
good, but this team have been together for a long time
now and this is our fifth season so we have got her
going really well. We have been together through
three quarter-tonners, X332s, X99s and more recently
the Dehler 34 and now the First 35, it’s just working
really well for us.’
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]
With our Theory Courses finishing in March and
not starting again until October, the summer
months are usually a quiet time for the Navigation
School. This has not been the case this year.
Throughout March and April Mike Greenstreet,
Roy Fomison, John Adkin and Dick Smith ran our
‘Academy’ course with 20 students from the
Marlowe, Dane Court and St. Georges’s Schools
attending for 8 x 2½ theory sessions culminating
in an Awards Ceremony for students and their
parents with Richard Falk, Chief Examiner for the
RYA, attending to present students with their
Basic Navigation Theory Certificates.
In the midst of all this, we were contacted, at very
short notice, by the Churchill School of English,
with a request to run a 2-Day Theory Course for
16 Italian students. So, on 22 and 23 June John
Adkin and Dick Smith, using our ‘Academy
Syllabus’, entertained our Italian guests and their
Tutors to a very Intensive ‘Theory of Navigation
Course’! The students enjoyed the experience
and the Tutors were well pleased with the course
and plan to arrange further such courses next year
Then, with the help of our Racing Skippers, we
earmarked six races in the Spring Series for
Academy students and managed to get all 20
students out on the water, with twelve of them
taking part in all six races, eight of whom have
now been signed up as permanent crew on their
respective boats.
Following straight on from that we had a request
to repeat the ‘Mini Academy’ course we ran last
year for Year 6 students from Chilton Junior
School. In last year’s trial we were able to
accommodate five students, but this year, with the
extra help of Roy Fomison and Mark Andrews,
along with their boats, the loan of ‘Eroica’ from
Gary Lewis, plus John Adkin and Dick Smith, we
were able to take ten students for six Wednesday
afternoon Practical sessions. The weather was
kind to us and we were able to get out on the water
for every session. The final session was a
Practical Exam, in which all ten students were
successful, and John and Dick were invited to
Chilton School to present our Mini Academy
students with their certificates. We wish them all
well in their new Secondary schools and hope to
see them back in the Club sailing again in the not
too distant future.
Crammed in between all this activity was the need
to run six ICC/CEVNI Practical Exams for skippers
intending to visit Belgium and Holland, plus two
Competent Crew Courses!
Somehow, amongst all these courses, I managed
a little personal sailing, like the ‘Round-the-Island
Race’ and a couple of boat deliveries to and from
the Solent. And I thought retirement would be an
easy life!
However, with all these courses during the usual
‘slack period’ for the Navigation School, the net
result is an unexpected summer income for the
school of just over £1000.00. I would like to thank
all of the Tutors who have given up their time and
effort to help run these courses.
In view of this extra income, the Navigation School
has purchased a VHF Radio set to be installed in
the Main Bar area which will allow Club Officers to
monitor races where necessary and to contact the
Race Hut, the Committee Boat, Port Control and
Dover Coast Guard. This VHF set should be up
and running for Ramsgate Week and will hopefully
prove to be an asset for the Club’s racing.
Dick Smith
Principal - Navigation School
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]
Social Drinks at the Club
2nd Thursday every month
Our social evenings are still very popular and
always attract a convivial crowd. Our next one
will be on the 10th September – why not join us?
The Cruising Section continues to prosper and our
cruising programme is continuing.
The highlight of the past month was the Summer
Cruise. Five yachts departed Ramsgate on the
27th June for Nieuwpoort. There was very little
wind for the first few hours, but the wind gods
smiled on us and brought us to Nieuwpoort with
ease. The next was a non-sailing day, so we went
down the coast on the tram to De Panne. There
was a reason for this, and it was to make sure
Lawrence Mayne got back to Ramsgate on his
bike. But that’s a different story.
Stan Jacob
RC Cruising
15 JULY 2015
Despite a forecast of sunshine and light breezes,
the six members who turned out played the first
few holes in strong breeze and persistent drizzle.
When the sun eventually emerged it very much
suited the Vice Captain’s game; Mike Foote
added 20 points on the back 9 to the more modest
13 he scored going out to take the top prize, and
will duly be docked 2 shots on his handicap next
time out. Doug Hack will lose a stroke for coming
second with a very steady round. At the other end
of the field Dave Allen gets 2 strokes back despite
winning the longest drive with a fine drive at the
12th hole. Mark Andrews gets on stoke back on
his handicap. Ronnie Vaughan won the nearest
the pin at the 14th.
Mark Andrews
Monday saw us sailing for Blankenberg, and again
we had a good wind and sunshine. But this time
we all attracted the attention of the Belgium
Maritime Police. They were quite friendly and
unobtrusive, but were doing their job. We
finished the day with a very pleasant meal in an
Italian restaurant. Tuesday the 30th was a nonsailing day, so we all departed for Bruges and
spent a very nice day sightseeing and refuelling in
the cafes there. In the evening, Tony Peers
entertained all crews to a drink on Stay Young.
The following day Assumpta Anne, Saje and
Juniper departed Blankenberg and sailed for
Breskins and the Dutch Lakes. They were the
adventurous ones. Stay Young departed for
Dunkirk, where we celebrated Elizabeth
Anderson’s birthday. Then back to back to
Ramsgate on a 17kt wind.
It was a very enjoyable cruise, and the company
and the weather were great. Thanks to Dennis
Payne for planning the trip.
Our next trip is to the East Coast. We are planning
to leave Ramsgate on the 10th August and return
on the 17th. Our stops include Rayal Harwich
Yacht Club, Titchmarsh Marina, Woodbridge and
Shotley Marina. So far five boats have signed up
for this and we welcome any other boats who
would like to join us.
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]
and throw them around -I think it's also because he was a
massive flirt! It was here he met a girl five years his senior
called Betty Champion -Betty and Dad fell in love and got
married in 1951. Dad had been working with an engineering
firm called Lex and he was learning the trade of mechanics.
His new in-laws assisted him to secure a loan and he
purchased his own garage in Croydon and Dad and Betty
moved to Limpsfield in Surrey where they had built a new
home and met life-long friends Joan and Jeff Baggott who
lived next door. Betty had trained as a teacher and an
opportunity arose to purchase a girl's boarding school called
Downham in Hatfield Heath in Essex -Dad and Betty bought
the school and ran the estate of Downhall, which the school
was on, Dad as bursar and Betty as headmistress. Dad also
purchased himself another garage in Hatfield Heath and
continued with his mechanics. Dad absolutely loved the life
he had here and threw himself into country pursuits of
shooting and hunting. He had also purchased his first boat; a
motor cruiser called 'Cara' at this time and belonged to
Burnham Yacht Club. Dad loved the freedom having a boat
gave him and often went off exploring -he especially had a
love for the Mediterranean, particularly Malta. He was always
a sun worshipper so I am particularly glad the sun is shining
Dad's mum and Aunty had both moved down to Ramsgate
and so as Dad was coming down regularly he joined the
Royal Temple Yacht Club in 1967 with his boat at the time
'Christiana'. 1967 was also the year that Downham School
closed. Betty had become ill with breast cancer and could no
longer work and Dad sold the remainder of the estate after
Betty sadly passed away from cancer in 1979.
During Betty's treatment she was an in-patient at the
Middlesex Hospital in London where she became friendly
with the ward sister, a plucky little Welsh woman called Jill.
Betty made a bequest to Dad when she died that he treat the
ward sister to the best meal in London as she had observed
Jill mainly lived on cigarettes, coffee and kitkats! One day
Dad turned up and wanted to carry out this bequest -he took
Jill, or as I like to call her 'Mum' out to The Savoy for dinner
and a relationship developed from there. They were married
in July 1980, just over a year later in October 1981 I was born
and Dad found himself a first time father at the age of 55.
Apparently he was glad that I was a girl as having had 3
sisters he thought he better understood girls.
And so began our incredibly special father daughter
relationship. I never minded that my Dad was slightly older
than most of my friends Dad's because for one I always had
an interest in history and Dad had lived through most of the
major events of the 20th Century but also he had retired and
therefore Dad was always able to come and watch me at
school concerts, competitions, plays as well as looking after
me through the holidays. We moved to Ramsgate when I was
2 years old -that year I was given a little blue bicycle for
Christmas and Dad taught me to ride it along the promenade.
I started school in 1985 and my uniform had a tie -Dad taught
me how to tie the tie I needed to wear and the importance of
a decent sized knot. He was always a stickler for being well
In the eighties and early nineties Dad was heavily involved
with the yacht club and our general holiday routine involved
him taking me to the club with him in the morning and sending
me off to help the cleaner or to help bring up the soft drinks
from the cellar for bottling up whilst he went through the
books and the like. Then we would head down to the boat
and he would give me a tray of nuts and bolts to play with or
he would utilise my size in the engine room to pass him things
when he was tinkering around -we had our Grand Banks by
this time 'Pieces of Eight', having upgraded from the Royal
Cruiser 'Sumati' -she was Dad's pride and joy and there was
no other boat in the marina that had such perfect varnish!
Dad loved to have people on board and it was often said you
couldn't walk past his boat without being invited on for
When I sat down to write this I really didn't know where to
begin. How to condense 89 years of a very rich and full life
not only of a man but of a man who has had such a profound
influence on my life and meant so much to me -my father.
So I decided that the best way to start was from the beginning
and see how I go.
Dad was born on a Monday -the 7th December 1925 in
Battersea maternity home to Margaret Lacey and Frank
Duncan Roberts. The second eldest of four and the only son,
named Frank after his father and grandfather before him. He
lived in Balham south London and then aged 3 the family
moved to a new build house in Mitcham. Dad had a fond
memory of this age as he was given a tricycle by an Aunt and
he would be allowed to go off on his own on it. One day his
mother had reports that he had been spotted in Norbury high
street, which was approximately 4 miles from his house.
Apparently his mother wasn't too concerned as he had a
good sense of direction! Dad was quite a sickly child,
suffering regularly from nausea, until he was diagnosed with
a “wonky appendix” aged 10 years old and was sent by his
family doctor to Bollingbroke hospital in Battersea to have it
From then on he grew into a tall strong handsome and
healthy young man and retained his thirst for adventure. He
finished schooling aged 14 years and began his working life
in 1939. Through the Blitz Dad was living in London and his
family were bombed out of 3 homes. On one occasion he
almost went up with the house after insisting that he finish
mending his shoe before heading to the air raid shelter. As
he closed the front gate to his house the bomb dropped and
the blast threw him across the street. During this time dad
had several jobs including working at his Grandfather's
butchers shop, as a page boy in the Berkeley hotel in
Piccadilly, a hospital porter, a groom- where he learnt to ride
and also one of his favourite's which was building Motor
torpedo boats at Sussex yacht works.
In 1943 Dad joined the Army as part of the East Surrey
Regiment. After his initial training he volunteered for the
parachute regiment -this was mainly because the pay was an
extra 2 shillings a day. He went to Ringway in Manchester to
train as a paratrooper and then after 5 weeks training he was
reposted to 12th Division parachute regiment on Salisbury
Plain. Dad was always very secretive about his military
career but we do know that on one mission when as the last
to jump from the plane the pilot turned the plane around early
to avoid fire and clipped Dad, breaking his neck. He was then
unable to drop correctly and broke both his ankles -amazingly
he was recovered and brought back to England. On another
occasion he had a serious hand injury and was given a new
wonder drug to fight infection 'Penicillin' -this unfortunately
was not so wonderful for him as he had a severe allergic
reaction and went into cardiac arrest requiring a large
injection of adrenaline direct to his heart - again he survived
against the odds. When the war ended Dad was sent to
Palestine and worked there with the police due to escalating
violence -again he never like to talk about this time as he said
he saw some terrible things. He did pick up another skill
though and learnt to ride a camel as well as more than
passing understanding of Arabic.
Once he left Palestine Dad took digs in Streatham where he
met a young man of similar age who he became friends with
-this man was a fledgling actor and managed to get Dad a
couple of stunt roles in some films- his parachute training
came in handy when he had to jump from moving carriages
and so on. Dad didn't stay in the film industry more than five
minutes but the actor is now known as Sir Roger Moore. In
his free time Dad used to go to social gatherings at Streatham
ice rink -he took part in ice shows and he said all the girls
liked to skate with him because he could lift them up easily
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]
tea/coffee or something stronger. 'Pieces of Eight' also had a
decent sized oven and fridge and Dad used to like to make
cakes on board but also, much to my disgust, regularly made
jellied eels -'you can take the boy out of London'...
Dad had an interesting approach to marine safety -and whilst
I had learnt to swim from a very young age when wandering
the deck at sea I was expected to wear a life jacket. Prior to
any trip Dad's method of checking the life-jacket was to put
me in it and then promptly throw me into the harbour!
Dad would also take me on long walks or to visit places of
interest such as the local castles and country houses. I loved
visiting London with him as he knew the whole town like the
back of his hand and it always felt a great treat to go shopping
with him in some of the big posh London shops.
He was an absolute stickler for time keeping and would not
wait for people -he would allow me say five minutes to look in
a shop and on a number of occasions he was halfway up the
street walking on when I came out.
I was quite an adventurous child, obviously taking after Dad,
but also pretty accident-prone. I had had a few close calls and
scrapes as an infant but it was when I was 7 that I had my
first major accident and fell through my parent’s conservatory
roof. Thanks to Dad's quick thinking first aid and also
penchant for driving over the speed limit I was delivered to
Margate A&E swiftly and I didn't lose my leg. I also followed
in his footsteps aged 12 and managed to break my neck -I
don't think he was too impressed that I had managed to copy
him in this field. I was sent to Stanmore orthopaedic hospital
and Dad, who was Commodore of the yacht club by this point,
would go to the club first thing and then every day he would
drive up to see me and would distract me from the pain I was
in and encourage me with my physio. Dad always had the
ability to remain calm and clear-headed in crisis situations
and he often counselled me and kept me from panicking
about situations. He was my number one supporter and
believed in me 100% but also pushed me to be better. He
was not the sort of Dad who let me win at games by playing
badly win but rather he would cheat at them to teach me a
lesson that one should always be on their guard!
He also regretted that he had not had a better education so
was keen for me to go to University and took me on a road
trip around the country during the year that I had to make my
selections so that I could visit the different places. I studied
Archaeology at the University of York, I had the classic
wobble in my second year and phoned home to say I wanted
to quit my course and come home, mum answered the phone
and said that this was okay and they would support me, Dad
called me back shortly afterwards and said “young lady you
will not give up your course” -he reminded me that I was lucky
to have the opportunity but also that it was time I made my
own way in the world. Dad would always take me up to York
and collect me at the beginning and end of term and was
always very generous regularly taking my friends and I out
for meals. If I hadn't stayed on in York then I wouldn't have
made such fantastic friends, one of which convinced me to
train as a nurse with her. I remember being worried about
telling Dad that I had decided to train as nurse, we had had
conversations and plans to join the Royal Navy and I thought
he would be disappointed. However, when I did tell him he
was very pleased, he always did like nurses and with one for
a wife and one for a daughter he knew he would be well
looked after! He has always supported me in my career and
been proud of me and not shy of telling me this either.
In latter years, once Dad had sold 'Pieces of Eight', he took
pride in his garden. He loved being outside and would potter
for hours in his shed. He was never idle and his poor mobility
often frustrated him. He used to like to do puzzles and word
searches to keep his mind active and became quite an avid
He taught me the importance of making every day count and
his drive and determination always shone through. After
having a pace maker fitted last year we were worried that he
wouldn't manage to come down to Dorset for my wedding,
but not only did he manage it -he exercised in the garden for
weeks beforehand and walked me down the aisle, a truly
special memory.
I am going to miss my wonderfully funny, kind, generous and
loving Daddy who taught me so much and loved me so much.
He was a very special man, my hero and my father.
Dad also liked the fact that I enjoyed music and singing, he
had been a choirboy himself as a youngster and had a very
good voice. He would often sing to me and make up songs
with naughty lyrics -he had a great sense of humour and
always had a cheeky twinkle in his eye. He nurtured in me a
love of classical music and opera for which I will be eternally
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]
By Denys Tweddell
In this and subsequent issues of Temple News we
are publishing a series of Articles on Club history the
work of one of our Past Commodores – Denys
Tweddell. In introducing them he writes:
One of the problems faced by anyone seeking
information on history is to distinguish between fact and
fiction. So often legend passed down by word of mouth
is tainted by romantic embellishment.
For some time now I have been striving to gather a
series of notes relating to the factual history of the Club.
Compiling this has been rather difficult; over the years
many records have been lost, some with the transfer of
“offices” in the late Victorian days and sadly earlier
historians and writers have been negligent in returning
material that they had access to. The vicissitudes of
Club occupancy during the War Years and the frequent
movement of records within the Club has not been
helpful, nor the zeal of organisers who have mistakenly
destroyed damaged or decaying material under the
pretext of “Health and Safety”.
Against this background I have sought to draw up a
series of notes drawn from various sources still
accessible including early editions of the Yachting
press, existing Club records, Race Books and Legal
Against this background, our Editor Sue has agreed to
publish them as Supplements to subsequent issues of
Temple News………READ ON ! OVERLEAF
Gypsy Moth IV
Sir Ben Ainslie
Stern/masthead/starboard spreader/port spreader
Boxing the Compass
Assistant to the Ship’s Surgeon
Milford Haven
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]
the road to the village was in such a condition that one
risked breaking limbs in reaching it. In wet weather,
none of the roads were fit for use. He proposed using
the Tavern near the Custom’s House Gravesend as the
meeting place.
Deliberations continued and in the following year one
member suggested Rainham Ferry House. Saying that
the House was very respectable, the service and grub
excellent and cheap.
Eventually the Pier Hotel
Greenhiithe – landlord Mr Wingrove – was chosen.
In 1872 the Club had 31 yachts on its list; the largest
was Mr LS Shadwell’s Thalatta of 35 tons. There were
small boats too – a couple of 2 tonners Dux and Fairy
– owned by Mr AQ Dumphey and Mr WE Lewin,
Owners were becoming more venturesome and races
were being run to Gravesend and beyond where in
1880 the Clarendon was in use and permission was
given for flying the Club flag from the flagstaff on the
In London the Club was using Anderton’s Hotel, Fleet
At the beginning of the 1882 season members were
granted Honorary Membership of the Erith Yacht Club
and had full use of the yacht Gypsy as a floating Club
Races were started at Gravesend and courses
extended. Yachts had to round the Nore and back, or
to Port Victoria, or to the Sun Pier at Chatham, and
often to Ramsgate. A move was made to the Falcon at
Gravesend with the Royal Hotel at Ramsgate, in the
words of the Pall Mall Gazette, “as a sort of annexe”.
The Sun Hotel Chatham was chosen as another
watering hole.
Back in London towards the end of 1893, it was
decided to set up headquarters at the Hotel Victoria,
Northumberland Avenue. Agreement was reached that
the Club had the use of the ground floor, Edinburgh
Room on the first and third Wednesdays of the month
at a cost of ten guineas per annum.
Offices which had been at 86 Leadenhall Street were
transferred to Dashwood House, New Broad Street. At
the beginning of 1896 the Club was regarded as a small
institution with about 150 Members.
All was to change.
A formidable team of Officers and Committee had
plans for the future. Realising that there was an urgent
need of a Club House, this became their priority.
Where did it all start?
In the late 1850s a half-dozen or so gentlemen, who
frequented the Constitution, a hostelry in Bedford
Street off the Strand, banded together to form a Yacht
Club. Their inaugural meeting was on 4th March 1857,
at the Ship Tavern, Essex Street. This Street ran down,
by the side of the Temple, from St Clements in the
Strand, to the small Temple Pier. So the Temple Yacht
Club was founded, the name being taken from the
Temple Pier, the starting point of their sailing.
Forty years later the Vice Commodore, Mr JH Gretton
at the 1897 Annual Banquet, referred to those early
days saying that
“The Club was founded by a few young men who
wished to learn to sail a boat. They had no paid
hands and were obliged to do everything connected
with the navigation of their craft by the knowledge
they possessed or more correctly by the accidents
which happened to them in their attempts to
educate themselves. They had preserved their
character of amateur sailors and one of the first
principles of the Club was to encourage amateur
Records of the early years are scanty and we are
reliant on Magazine and Press articles of the time
together with a Register of Members compiled in 1947.
There were 30 Members in the first years with Francis
Fricker, the Honorary Treasurer, Fees were half a
crown enrolment and a subscription of sixpence a
month thereafter.
In the latter half of the 1850s the Thames was severely
polluted – 1858 being referred to as the Great Stink.
Parliament was disrupted; sailing in the region of the
Temple would be quite vile. New waters would have to
be found.
An issue of the Field in 1862 mentions a General
Meeting at the Ship Tavern on 5th March and comments
that several members of the London Model Yacht Club
had recently joined - an early indication that the Club
should be open to all with a nautical interest. It was
agreed that the opening cruise would be on Good
Friday with yachts assembling at Erith. The move
downstream had begun.
The first race that year was on 19th May from Charlton
to Greenhithe and back. Four boats took part with
Rifleman owned by Mr Antill winning in a time of 5
hours 05 seconds. The Commodore, Mr Chillingworth,
accompanied the little 5 ton yachts on the steamer
(Boats were rated using the Thames Measurement and
referred to hull size as will be explained in a later report)
At this time the Anchor and Hope at Charlton was the
official meeting place of the Members
In the 1867 Season races were being run from
Charlton. The closing match was on 4th October with a
fleet of nine. Again the course was to Greenhithe and
back. On return, in the Erith Reach they were
becalmed resulting in a slow long drift home. Five
managed to finish in times around 8 hours, the rest
rowed in.
In 1872 the Vice Commodore, Mr FW Laxton, made the
point that the journey to Charlton was very dangerous;
Please send any contributions for compilation into the next issue or comments, etc to Sue Foster at [email protected]