Hornet News

Vela Tour of Britain 2019

Solo sailing round Britain in a little red boat with a supply of gin – what could possibly go wrong?

Jill Rogers sailed around England this summer . Here are some extracts from her blog:

“My rough plan is to go clockwise around Britain. I’m aiming to stop at the following major points: Dartmouth, Falmouth, Penzance, Padstow, Milford Haven, Fishguard, Pwllheli, Menai Straits, Isle of Man, Bangor, West coast of Scotland, Caledonian Canal, Whitby, Lowestoft, Harwich, Ramsgate, Brighton and back to Gosport. Of course, no plan survives first contact with the elements so we shall see if this comes to pass! “

"Throw off your bowlines. Sail away from safe harbour. Catch the wind in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain

“Of course, the absolute star of the show is ‘Vela’. A Sadler 25 built in 1981 with jaunty red topsides, a curvaceous tumblehome hull and a loyal and forgiving disposition. Originally suggested by Jon as a matching accessory to my newly acquired red foul weather gear, she’s been a source of joy and fun since we bought her in 2016. Small enough to sail singlehanded with ease, she is a reliable, seaworthy yacht.”

“I’m indebted to a few people for helping make this trip a reality. Firstly Jon who made it possible for me to actually have a boat through shared ownership and has generously let me take Vela away for the summer; secondly my sister Nicky who after being widowed a few years ago, took a sabbatical and went to live in Spain for three months, leading the way for a voluntary opt out of the daily grind. Lastly I’m very grateful to Sam Steele, who went through Army officer training with me and is a great sailor, she and her partner circumnavigated the UK and wrote a fantastic book about it "The UK and Ireland Circumnavigator’s Guide". Her account and experience inspired me to have a go.”