OYT South bulletin 18th March 2022

OYT South’s weekly newsletter, including details of what has happened on the boat in the last week, plus short notice sailing vacancies for crew and sea staff and other ways you can get involved, and all the charity’s news.

OYT South bulletin 18th March 2022

by | Mar 18, 2022

In this Bulletin
Sections which have changed since last time marked *

* Welcome Jenn – and farewell Georgia
This week we are delighted to welcome our new cadet Jenn Rogers as a full-time member of the team! We know everyone will want to make her very welcome and give her lots of support as she gets used to a seafaring life on board Prolific.

But of course this means we have to say farewell to Georgia Watson, our first-ever Cadet, who has been on the staff team since 2018, though of course we knew her as a volunteer before that – and we will continue to see her as a volunteer because she already has a voyage booked in the summer! We all want to say a huge thanks to Georgia who has been an amazing member of the team. We have been very proud to see how far she has come, and we wish her all the very best for the future.

Huge thanks to the Ellis Campbell Foundation, Trinity House and the Honourable Company of Master Mariners, who fund the Staff Cadet position as a training role.

Now we look forward to seeing the progress that Jenn will make in the job!

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* Season starts next week! Huge thanks to all involved with the refit
Big thanks this week to Holly, Josh, Georgia, Jenn, Iori, Glyn Collins, Ollie Bowden, Rob Jelley, Cathy Ayres, Dave, Julie, Chris Gibson, Joe Parker and Graeme Cole for help at refit.

Last week was all about the engine – huge thanks to Josh and to BD Marine, and everyone who put in an amazing effort on this major job.

This week included the trip round to Gosport on Tuesday so that the masts could go back in on Wednesday – big thanks to Vortec and Victoria Quay. Also to Colin Baxter who kindly took some photos:

Ollie wasn’t too impressed with the weather on the run back from Gosport to Southampton:

Other jobs include a massive sanding session on the capping rail, getting all the gear back on board, chart corrections and lots of cleaning!

The team seem very pleased with their new vacuum cleaner:

Next week we have the sea trials – and then the first proper voyage of the year!

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* 2022 volunteer sea staff bookings – NEW availability
A few more vacancies as people who had provisionally reserved berths have encountered clashes with new jobs or other issues! We have spaces for volunteers as follows:

1-5 June – Southampton – third mate, trainee mate or bosun needed
11-17 June – Southampton – third mate, trainee mate or bosun needed
16-22 July – Brixham – one more qualified watchleader needed
24-29 Aug – Brixham to Poole – at least one more qualified watchleader needed, plus a trainee mate or bosun
19-23 Sept – Southampton – third mate, trainee mate or bosun
24-27 Sept – Southampton – two spaces for third mate or trainee mate or bosun
7-9 Oct – Southampton – one more qualified watchleader

It would be good to fill the berths needing qualified watchleaders now. For the voyages open to trainee mates or bosuns, we might wait until after the mates’ training weekend 1-3 April to see if we have some good new volunteers needing voyages, but if anyone else really wants one of these dates then by all means get your name on the list now.

Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you can help with any of these.

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Using a RIB to help berth Prolific – training session

On Tuesday 26th April, Dom Coleman (OYT South volunteer and expert powerboat instructor) has kindly offered to come and run a session on how to use the dinghy to assist in parking Prolific. Sometimes it is really helpful to have a push from the dinghy – as long as the angle, force and timing are right and there is effective communication with Prolific’s helm – and that takes a bit of practice! We’ll have the sea staff team on board who were already booked for that week’s voyage, but there is room for a few more people if you would like to come and learn. You might be very glad of this next time you are on board and Prolific needs to get on to a tight berth in windy conditions! Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you are interested. This day is aimed at active sea staff who will be sailing Prolific this season.

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South Coast Boat Show 6-8 May – volunteers needed

The South Coast Boat Show will be taking place in Ocean Village over the weekend of 6-8 May. Prolific will once again be at the heart of the show, providing tea, coffee and bacon rolls to the public in exchange for donations to the charity. We also hope to have a reception for exhibitors on board on Saturday evening.

We will need a good team of volunteers on Friday afternoon, Saturday and Sunday, to get the boat ready with the deck awnings up plus flags and bunting, and then working in the galley to make drinks and bacon rolls, or showing people round the boat and talking to them about the work of the charity. It would be good to have some sea staff on board but also at least a couple of under-18s who have sailed with us and are happy to talk to people about what the experience was like.

Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you would like to be involved.

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* 2022 voyage
availability – individual bookings
We are taking individual bookings for young people on the following voyages (see following sections for group voyages and adult voyages):

15-19 April, Southampton, 4 nights, £425 – ONE place possibly still available tbc!
2-8 July, Southampton to Poole, 6 nights, £625
9-15 July, Poole tbc to Brixham, 6 nights, £625 – may be full unless we can add extra places – please ask!
23-27 July, Brixham, 4 nights, £425 – may be full unless we can add extra places – please ask!
10-16 Aug, Brixham, 6 nights, £625
17-23 Aug, Brixham, 6 nights, £625
24-29 Aug, Brixham to Poole, 5 nights, £525
30 Aug – 4 Sept, Poole to Southampton, 5 nights, £525 – may be full unless we can add extra places – please ask!
21-25 Oct, Southampton, 4 nights, £410 (voyage starts later on Friday so people can join after schools break up for half term)

If you are interested in any of these dates. email webmaster1@oytsouth.org stating the age of the person who will be sailing. Our voyages can be open to people aged 11-25 but in practice we aim to divide people into compatible groups and not have 11-year-olds and 25-year-olds sailing together. If you are around the middle of the age range, any voyage on the list could work, but for younger or older people we will advise if your chosen date looks appropriate or not – sometimes it is hard to be sure until we have a reasonable number of enquiries.

People who are aged 18-25 can apply for places on youth voyages but would also be eligible for adult voyages (18+ with no upper age limit).

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2022 voyage voyage availability – group bookings

One voyage currently available for group bookings (usually at least 12 people, which may be all young people but can include adult leaders). Please email webmaster1@oytsouth.org a.s.a.p. to discuss the requirements for your group.

10-15 Oct, Southampton, 5 nights, £525 per person.

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2022 adult voyages
and volunteer training
We have adult voyages scheduled as follows:

1-3 April 2022, Southampton, 2 nights, age range 18+, £215 per person, adult weekend voyage (Friday evening to Sunday evening). Currently full but we can take names for a reserve list in case anyone has to drop out.

12-16 Sept 2022, Southampton, 4 nights, age range 18+, £425, adult week (Monday to Friday). Spaces available.

7-9 Oct 2022, Southampton, 2 nights, age range 18+, £215 per person, adult weekend voyage (Friday evening to Sunday evening). Spaces available.

These are open to anyone aged 18+ but priority will be given to people who are interested in finding out more about volunteering with the charity and potentially hoping to use the voyage to earn a recommendation for volunteer training (especially those who have not had the opportunity to earn a recommendation on a youth voyage), as well as current volunteers looking for some extra training on a voyage where they can focus on their own skills without the responsibility of supervising young people at the same time.

Email webmaster1@oytsouth.org if you are interested in an adult berth.

In addition, as we did in 2021, we have earmarked a special training voyage for young volunteers aged 16-25. This will run from 6-11 September and will be largely filled by invitation: we will be looking for young people who have excelled on a youth voyage and have great potential as volunteers, or people who have recently started sailing as young volunteers and whose training we are investing in for the future of the charity. We will be aiming to raise funds to make this voyage as affordable as possible: the priority is to focus on the best young people who could be part of the charity for years to come and will make it possible for us to sail with hundreds of other young people in future. Although we will be inviting people to join this voyage, if you would like to be considered, you can ask the skipper on any other voyage if they would recommend you, or you can email webmaster1@oytsouth.org asking to be considered. If not all the places are filled with young volunteers, we may open up a few places to others in the same age range who don’t mind getting involved while others practise their leadership skills.

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* Financial appeal

Big thanks this week to the family and friends of the late Roger Grimsdick (see below) for some very kind donations in his memory.

We need a regular flow of funds to cover at least three major areas: bursaries for young people who could not otherwise afford to sail; vessel maintenance and equipment; and staff salaries – please help, or pass on our details to anyone you come across who might make a grant, large or small.

See here for how to make a donation – you can contribute by cheque, phone or PayPal, but please do something if you possibly can. Don’t forget that if you complete and return a Gift Aid form (pdf) we can claim back tax on your donation.

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* Roger Grimsdick

Last month we were sad to report the death at the age of 90 of former OYC skipper and governor Roger Grimsdick.

Many people have commented on how much Roger did for the charity through almost four decades.

Paul Bishop, Staff Skipper of OYC vessel Scott Bader Commonwealth (November 1984 to June 1987) writes: “I first met Roger when I brought Scott Bader Commonwealth into London in November 1984 to set up a new OYC section which was to be based from the Isle of Dogs. This was the vision of David James who was the OYC Director at the time. David had been the skipper of the sail training gaff ketch Larvik which had operated from this colourful and rapidly changing community a few years before. The London Dockland Development Corporation had given the community a sizable grant to establish a sail training vessel on the Isle of Dogs. This was before Canary Wharf had been built and the Dockland Light Railway had been completed.

Roger was my Area Governor and was always on hand to provide wise counsel throughout this exciting period of my life as a young OYC staff skipper. He helped me steer this initiative through the inevitable ups and downs, and somehow succeeded in keeping me out of trouble.

As a young skipper in his early twenties who thought he knew it all, I am sure that I must have been a supreme ‘pain in the backside’ to provide any degree of control or direction over, but Roger was ever calm, patient, and supportive. A kind and thoughtful man, I will be forever grateful to Roger for his stalwart support and dedication to the OYC. He helped me galvanise a strong support group of amazing individuals from across London, some of whom remain best friends to this day. Roger was not only committed to supporting an organisation that provided so many benefits and positive life-changing experiences for young people, he was also passionate about the leadership development opportunities it gave to the many young volunteer second and trainee mates and bosuns who came through our voyage programme. He used to say “Paul, these are our future  ‘Leaders of Industry’”.

Without Roger and our support group, it would have been impossible to make such an impact into community life on the Isle of Dogs, taking hundreds of young people on sail training voyages and Tall Ships Races across the North Sea and beyond. I am delighted to know that this legacy continues with Prolific’s sail training voyages with George Green School on ‘The Island’.

Roger, I was saddened to hear that you had ‘crossed the bar’ recently and I look forward to raising a glass to you tonight to thank you for all you did in supporting OYC London, Scott Bader Commonwealth and me over those ground-breaking years that we shared together.”

Jonathan Cheshire adds: “Roger was one of the first OYC Governors to come and meet me after I was appointed National Director in 1989. He took a lot of trouble to introduce me to the organisation and to some of his friends in Gosport when I moved here with the family. He was unfailingly supportive of what I was trying to do to improve our youth work practice and helped me to navigate some of the more perilous internal politics of a national charity with a large volunteer membership. A kind and generous man who gave a lot to OYC, the support and development of young people, and the craft of navigation and seamanship.”

And Roger’s son Peter kindly sent in a copy of the eulogies delivered at his funeral. Jean Griffith spoke about his time with OYC but several other people spoke about his career as an engineer; his many hobbies – including dancing on ice!; his role at the Royal Institute of Navigation and his involvement in developing the Ocean Yachtmaster astro-navigation syllabus. One speaker described him as “a raconteur, entrepreneur and buccaneer … as wise as Methuselah, kindness itself and as a host wonderfully generous.”

Peter closed the service with a poem, saying “I hope it raises a smile for you, particularly to the sailors in the room, and to those of you who knew how Roger’s love of technology contrasted with his opinions on astronavigation, the vulnerabilities of GPS, and the use of a good old fashioned sextant. For further context, the original poem by John Masefield describes the joy of sailing with nought but the wind’s song, and the stars overhead.

I must go down to the seas again, in a modern high-tech boat,
And all I ask is electric, for comfort while afloat,
And alternators, and solar panels, and generators going,
And deep-cycle batteries with many amperes flowing.

I must go down to the seas again, to the autopilot’s ways,
And all I ask is a GPS, and a radar and displays,
And a cell phone, and a weather fax, and a short-wave radio,
And compact discs, computer games, and TV videos.

I must go down to the seas again, with a freezer full of steaks,
And all I ask is a microwave, and a blender for milkshakes,
And a water maker, air conditioner, hot water in the sink,
And email and a VHF to see what my buddies think.

I must go down to the seas again, with power-furling sails,
And chart displays of all the seas, and a bullhorn for loud hails,
And motors pulling anchor chains, and push-button sheets,
And programs which take full charge of tacking during beats.

I must go down to the seas again, with RAM in gigabytes,
And teraflops of processing, for hobbies that I like,
And software suiting all my wants, seated at my console,
And pushing on the buttons which give me complete control.

I must go down to the seas again, my concept seems quite sound,
But when I simulate this boat, some problems I have found,
The cost is astronomical, repairs will never stop,
Instead of going sailing, I’ll be shackled to the dock.

I must go down to the seas again, how can I get away?
Must I be locked in low-tech boats until my dying day?
Is there no cure for my complaint, no technologic fix?
Oh I fear, electric fever, is a habit I can’t kick.”

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* Summer Marina Assistant roles with our sponsors MDL
Anyone looking for a great job over the summer? Summer Marina Assistant roles with our sponsors MDL might be ideal for anyone who loves being around boats.

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Painting of Prolific – prints available to buy!

Our friend, Gosport-based marine artist Colin Baxter, has prints taken from an original painting of Prolific available for you to buy.


The unframed prints will measure 370mm x 230mm plus border. They will be numbered and signed, and will cost £45 if you can pick yours up in Gosport, and £50 if you need it posted (they will probably come rolled in a cardboard tube). Order here:

Postage / collection options

Anyone outside the UK wanting to order a copy, please email us.

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Raise funds for OYT South if you’re shopping online
we’ve made nearly £1,000 through Easyfundraising!
“What a fool I was!” says Mark Todd.

“For ages I’ve seen in the bulletin that Easyfundraising is a good way to raise money for charity, but I never got round to doing anything about it, and when Caz told me how easy it was, I didn’t listen.

I thought it might be a hassle, or that I’d have to remember to do something when I bought stuff online, or that it probably wasn’t really worthwhile.

This week I finally got round to it and it turns out it’s a REALLY EASY way to raise money for the charity I care about … and I definitely should have done it sooner.

It takes a minute or two to sign up; you can do it on a desktop, tablet and/or phone, and you can install a widget that flags up when a donation is available. Once that’s done, imagine you’re looking to buy – say – a rainbow unicorn: just put “rainbow unicorn” in your usual search box, and the list of results shows you which sites come with donations, and how much. It’s up to you what to pick and whether to accept the donation from the site, but a huge choice of sites will offer a donation – and it doesn’t cost you a penny.

I don’t know why I didn’t do it sooner … but if there’s anyone else who has been like me and just not got round to it, PLEASE click the link now and sign up!”


We have already raised more than £900 through Easyfundraising – huge thanks to everyone who has used it!

OYT South is also registered with Amazon Smile which makes donations to us when people shop – Amazon will donate 0.5% of the net purchase price on eligible purchases. If you ever shop with Amazon, do have a look – once you pick Ocean Youth Trust South as your chosen charity and start using https://smile.amazon.co.uk, you don’t need to do anything further, and all your other Amazon account settings remain unchanged.

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OYT South social media – please get involved
One of the simplest ways you can help us while we can’t sail is to keep looking at our social media pages and share, retweet or like as many posts as possible. This all helps to make sure other people hear about us too – and the more we can keep alive the interest in our charitable work, the more people might help us now or start to think about sailing with us in future. Maybe you’ve got a community group, a local page, even a street WhatsApp where members might like to know that you are involved with a charity that could be of interest to them?

We are on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/oytsouth – please do give us a Like! If you were friends with John Laing on our old page (https://www.facebook.com/johnlaingsailing please do move to the new page now.

We are also on Twitter @oytsouth so please follow us!

And Instagram @oyt_south

And LinkedIn Ocean Youth Trust South

Please note that OYT South has a policy that our adult staff and volunteers should not make or accept individual online friend requests with crew members aged under 18, or vulnerable adults. Crew members can use the sites to stay in touch with the boat and with each other, but not with individual staff and volunteers.

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Branded clothing
OYT South branded clothing available – please see here. You can buy hoodies (in a wide range of colours), fleeces, short- and long-sleeved t-shirts, baseball caps, beanie hats, polo shirts and more, all with OYT South’s logo!

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Raise And Sail – website for anyone looking to raise money to come sailing
Raise And Sail is a section of this website full of ideas, information and support for young people who would like to raise money in order to come sailing with us. Huge thanks to Fiona Keen and Emma Burrows for putting Raise And Sail together. We hope you will find it useful – let us know how you get on as we can add success stories and new ideas to the site in due course.

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New readers’ welcome and introduction
If you have recently registered your interest in OYT South, welcome to our newsletter, which is sent out almost every week, normally on a Friday, and is also copied onto the website.

If you have just started receiving this newsletter by email, it is because we believe you have signed up and consented to receive it – perhaps by emailing us to ask for it, completing a form on our website, or adding your email address to the book on board where people can sign up to receive news, as well as leaving comments. If this was a mistake or you simply decide you want to stop receiving the newsletter, just press “reply” to the email and write UNSUBSCRIBE at the top, or email webmaster1@oytsouth.org asking to unsubscribe.

Each week the newsletter includes a wide range of news from the boat and from the charity, including details of voyages available for young people; adult voyages; opportunities for adult volunteers both ashore and afloat, and much more. We find that while some people read the bulletin almost every week, many others dip in and out, and read it when it’s convenient – which is why some items are repeated. New items are marked with an asterisk * so that if you did read it last week, you can see which sections you can safely skip.

Please feel free to join in any OYT South activities – nothing here is restricted to long-standing members or people who already know one another. New people are always very welcome!

If you need an introduction to the work of OYT South, you should find a lot of useful information on our website. But essentially, we are a registered charity (no. 1079959) which exists to offer adventure under sail as a personal development opportunity for young people aged 12-25, from the widest possible range of backgrounds. A high proportion of our young crew members are disadvantaged or deserving in some way: many of these sail in groups organised by other charities, youth clubs, special schools and so on, and will fill the bulk of our term-time voyages. But those from more fortunate backgrounds are also welcome to sail, either in groups or by coming as individuals on a mixed voyage. Every year we run a variety of shorter local voyages plus longer adventure trips – sometimes including Tall Ships races during the summer holidays. If you are aged 12-25 and hoping to sail as a crew member, take a look here– and this section is also useful for adults who are thinking of organising a voyage for a young person. Adults planning to organise a full group voyage should also see here. Adults who want to sail themselves should see here.

We have a professional staff skipper and engineer, but our watch leaders are normally all volunteers, who combine sailing skills with an interest in working with young people. You can find more information here – how the system works, how to join, and profiles of existing staff and volunteers.

To volunteer for OYT South ashore, please see here. To help with the vessel’s annual refit, see here.

It is a very expensive business maintaining a boat, running an office and employing staff. If you want to help us, please become a member of OYT South. Or see here for information on making a donation.

If you have any questions, please do email – or contact the office.

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Receiving this newsletter by email
Many thanks to all those who have given consent to receiving this newsletter by email. If you are not currently getting it by email and would like to, please just click here Newsletter Subscribe and press “send”, or email webmaster1@oytsouth.org.

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