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How to avoid expensive mistakes when you buy a new or second-hand yacht. 

Available on Amazon here


Icom IC-M35We review the Icom IC-M35 handheld.  Read the full review here.

GMDSS A User's Handbook

By Denise Bréhaut

GMDSS A user's handbook








The Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) provides a fast and efficient way of calling for assistance at sea, whatever the size of craft or its geographical position. Since it was first published, this book has helped explain the system for anyone using GMDSS and has been excellent pre-course reading for students.



SafaSail HatThe SafaSail Hard Hat looks just like a sailing cap, but will help protect you if you get a bang to the head.  See our review here

The News


RYA Club of the Year Competition

RYA Club of the Year LogoApplications for the RYA Club of the Year 2014 are now open. The awards are aimed at recognising and promoting the outstanding achievements of the amazing array of people who work together to create vibrant clubs across the UK and keep our sports alive.  

Launched in 2007, the award which is supported by Gallagher Heath, looks for clubs who are successful at:  

·          Encouraging people to get on the water 

·          Providing a range of quality and safe activities for all

·         Attracting new club members and volunteers 

·         Engaging with the local community, particularly young people

·         Demonstrating good governance and club management

Read more: RYA Club of the Year Competition

RYA revises guidance on Flares

FlaresThe RYA has issued revised guidance on the carriage and use of flares by non-commercial yachts.  The new guidance has been approved by both the Maritime Coastguard Agency and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution. The guidance note can be downloaded here.

The carriage and use of flares by small leisure craft has recently been a matter of some controversy.  We ran an editorial a few years ago, following an horrific accident to an RYA Instructor who was demonstrating their use, arguing that with the increasing use of Personal Locator Beacons, Electronic Position Indicating Beacons, and the mandatory use of DSC VHF, the carriage of what are in reality dangerous exposives that can't be easily disposed of when out of date is an anachronism.

Read more: RYA revises guidance on Flares

Best Round-the-Island for years!

On a gloriously sunny morning, one thousand, four hundred and fifty one assorted yachts, from Ben AinslIe's America's Cup Catamaran to tiny 'Old Gaffers' set off early this morning on the 2013 Round the Island race.

I salied with Glenn Smallcombe of Quantum Sailing on their Sunfast 37, and we were round in just over seven hours - slightly longer than Ben Ainslie's two hours and fifty two minutes!

Read more: Best Round-the-Island for years!

GPS replacement rolls out in Channel

Trinity House Logo. The UK’s pursuit of technology to counter the threat of GPS jamming has achieved a significant milestone, and is setting the benchmark across the globe.

It was announced today that seven differential eLoran stations will be installed along the South and East coast of the UK, following approval by the Department for Transport. The stations will provide alternative position, navigation and timing (PNT) information to ensure that ships equipped with eLoran receivers can navigate safely in the event of GPS failure in one of the busiest shipping regions in the world.

Read more: GPS replacement rolls out in Channel

Olympic Yachtsman dies in capsize tragedy

The British Olympic sailor Andrew Simpson, 36,  was killed when his team's ultra-modern catamaran capsized on Thursday in strong winds in  San Francisco bay and trapped him underwater during training for the America's Cup.

The 72-foot Artemis catamaran flipped over at around 1.15pm local time, sending its 13 crew members into the water and trapping Andrew under the vessel's platform for about 10 minutes.

Rescuers pulled him into a support boat but despite attempts to rescusetate him, he was declared dead about 20 minutes later.

Simpson won a gold medal for Britain in the 2008 Beijing Olympics as a crew member in the star class, and he also took silver last year at the London Games.

"The entire team is devastated by what happened," said Artemis chief executive Paul Cayard, a sailing world champion and America's Cup veteran. "Our heartfelt condolences are with Andrew's wife and family.

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