Sat 23 Apr – Sun 24 Apr – Spring Rally to the Itchenor Sailing Club

The April Rally to Itchenor was a very windy NNE F5/F6 and that among other factors led to several boats pulling out of our fast cruise in company.   In the end only three boats took part in the fast cruise: 

  • Jumunu – Lesley Brooman,
  • Magus Tao – Peter Puttock,
  • Tres Jolie – Jeremy Taylor

Many thanks to our Vice Commodore John Taylor who helped setting the course and provided two options, the second being a shorter course should the conditions worsen. Although challenging I made a decision to go with the longer course (Alpha).

2022 Itchnor Rally Route

The routes were as follows:

Route Alpha. 21.8NM.
Start at line between 5F North Sturbridge (North Cardinal, 50 ˚45’33N 01˚08’23W) and motorboat Rip Tide. First start at 1000 BST, take your GPS time as you cross the line. If Rip Tide is not on station take your time as you pass due North of North Sturbridge within 200m.

  • Mark 1 6A No Man’s Land Fort (bloody big round thing, 50˚44’40N 01˚05’70W), leave to Starboard
  • Mark 2 6K Horse Tail (Green channel marker, 50˚43’23N 01˚00’23W), leave to Port
  • Mark 3 6L Winner (South Cardinal, 50˚45’45N 00˚56’59W), leave to Starboard
  • Mark 4 Pullar (West Cardinal, 50˚40’47N 00˚50’90W), leave to Port

Finish Between West Pole (Red tripod, 50˚45’45N 00˚56’59W) and motorboat Rip Tide; if Rip Tide is not on Station take your GPS time as you pass within 200m due West of West Pole.

Route Bravo. 15.4NM
Start at line between 5F North Sturbridge (North Cardinal, 50 ˚45’33N 01˚08’23W) and motorboat Rip Tide. First start at 1000 BST, take your GPS time as you cross the line.

  • Mark 1 6A No Man’s Land Fort (bloody big round thing, 50˚44’40N 01˚05’70W), leave to Starboard
  • Mark 2 6K Horse Tail (Green channel marker, 50˚43’23N 01˚00’23W), leave to Port
  • Mark 3 6L Winner (South Cardinal, 50˚45’45N 00˚56’59W), leave to Starboard
  • Mark 4 6P New Grounds (West Cardinal, 50˚41’84N 00˚58’49W), leave to Port

Finish Between West Pole (Red tripod, 50˚45’45N 00˚56’59W) and motorboat Rip Tide if Rip Tide is not on Station take your GPS time as you pass within 200m due West of West Pole.

Arriving in Itchenor
Our berth for the night was a river pontoon to the East of Itechnor which due to the direction of the wind was a struggle to tie up to. After expending a lot of energy getting onto the pontoon we were then instructed by the ISC Commodore that we were on the wrong pontoon and we had to move to the 2nd pontoon further East!

Commodore’s Cocktails
After another struggle we finally settled down on the correct pontoon where we were joined by Graham Blake on his boat Boomerang and a few others from shore who had managed to convince the ISC boat man to give them a lift.

Jumunu took line honours and was 10 minutes faster than the competition on corrected time, I have therefore invited Lesley and her crew to join us at the Annual Dinner on Saturday 19th of November to award them the coveted Rose Bowl trophy.

Many thanks to the 29 members who joined us at Itchenor Sailing Club where we had a hearty meal, great conversation and enjoyed the amazing vista that their clubhouse has of the river. 

I’m also pleased to announce we managed to raise £100 from members towards the

2022 – Sardinia Rally – Sept 24th

Following a visit by Jonathan of Nautilus Yachting to our November meeting we can now confirm the date for the Sardinia Rally will be September 24th 2022.

The meeting was a great sucess and at the time of writing we have 33 members interested spread across 7 Yachts. Copied below are details of the proposed itinerary courtesy of Nautilus Yachting.

Suggested 1 week sailing itinerary from Portisco

DAY 1 : Portisco

Portisco lies on the jet set Costa Smeralda (“Emerald Coast”), an area buzzing with designer shopping, piazzas and stunning views.

Day 2 : Cannigione (15nm)

A sheltered harbour with good seafood restaurants. If you keep going along the Caprera coast, the very deep bay of Porto Palma offers the best sheltered free mooring in the area. Here you can safely stay the night whatever the wind.

DAY 3 : La Maddelena (6nm)

Visit a couple of small bays in S.Stefano and on the mainland, then sail to La Maddalena harbour on the main island of the Archipelago. La Maddelena is a traditional fishing harbour, picturesque and bustling, but sometimes in peak season the small harbour is very crowded, so you may have to overnight in Palau on the mainland.

DAY 4 : Lavezzi (15nm)

A marine park with fabulous snorkelling and diving.

DAY 5 : Bonifacio (21nm)

Bonifacio is on the south coast of Corsica. A dramatic entrance through the cliffs opens into a beautiful bay with anchorages and moorings on the town quay.

DAY 6 : Porto Massimo (16nm)

A small harbour on the north eastern coast of La Maddelena.

DAY 7 : Portisco (18nm)

Sardinia 1 week sailing holiday itinerary

If your interested in joining our rally please let us know ASAP.

2022 Visit to the Little Ship Club Jan 25th moved to Feb 22nd

UPDATE: Due to the rampant spread of Omnicron I have pushed back our visit to the Little Ship Club to Tuesday February 22nd, On Tuesday nights, the LSC have their regular club night and on this occasion they have a talk scheduled by Miles Featherstone Deputy Harbour Master of the Port of London Authority.

By kind invitation of the Little Ship Club Commodore Barrie J Martin, Oxted Offshore have been invited to pay a visit to their club. The LSC is the only sailing club by the Thames in the City of London and has been providing unique entertainment to sailors since 1926.

Little Ship Club London
Little Ship Club London

The LSC run regular events at the clubhouse, please see the following link for a full list: The LSC is equipped with a full bar and kitchen and are able to provide dinner which is usually a fixed menu (main course with vegetarian option and dessert or cheeseboard) for under £20/head. Please note the kitchen needs to know if your planning to stay for dinner a week before the event.

More details to follow…

To find out more about the club, please visit

2021 Freezer Rally December 10th

With little on the sailing calendar in December OXO members have been tradionally getting together for a nautical day out and usually a long lunch. Excursions in the past have included the Island Sailing Club on the Isle of White and the Royal Thames Yacht Club in Mayfair which Founded in 1775 is the oldest continuously operating yacht club in the world.

This year we visited Greenwich for a tour of the National Maritime Museum to be followed by Lunch at the aptly named Trafalgar Tavern, situated next to the River Thames. An OXO freezer rally of course would not be the same without some sort of water based transport and so we got to Greenwich on the Thames Clipper just in time to see a Tower Bridge lift.

Most of us arrived at the Museum at 11:00 in time for the now notorious tedious group photo.

The National Maritime Museum – Greenwich

After working up an appetite at the museum we wandered down the road to the The Trafalgar Tavern where we had the the Hardy Suite reserved. This is one of their upstairs private upstairs dining rooms which have great views across Greenwich and the River Thames.

The food was excellent, the quiz tricky and as you can see from the faces of our members it was thoroughly enjoyed by all.

2021 Trafalgar Tavern Festive Menu
2021 Trafalgar Tavern Festive Menu
The Pickle Room at the Trafalgar Tavern
Example Room at the Trafalgar Tavern

October is Boat Jumble time


With the end of the sailing season quickly approaching its time to cast overboard all those gadets that you never used and make more stowage for all those other things you have have your eye on.

One Mans Junk is another Man’s Treasure

Yotam Ottolenghi 

With that in mind I am officially designating our October meetup on the 20th of October 2021 at the Carpenters Arms as a “Boat Jumble” so take a peak in those lockers and fish out anything you no longer want.

Here are some examples of things you may no longer want:

  • Anchors
  • Bouys
  • Books
  • Charts
  • Electronics
  • Fenders,
  • Guidebooks
  • Nets
  • Oars
  • etc. etc.

So do bring them along, or let me know and I’ll pick them up from you, and lets see what we can do to get them into new hands.

Force 9 South Coast Lutine Charter

Last October we were able to charter Lutine from Lloyd’s Yacht Club for an out of season four day weekend which proved to be quite eventful due to the weather. Working through the weather windows we managed to get to Weymouth via Poole from Gosport.

The trip was enjoyed by all and so early in 2021 I booked Lutine again with the plan of getting to the Chanel Islands. Due to Covid it was decided that the Chanel Islands wouldn’t work and Dartmouth would be our destination.

With the weather closing in and the forecast looking grim we departed Gosport and had an uneventful sail down to Yarmouth.

05:30 Saturday 2nd of October. After a lovely meal in Yarmouth involving hot rocks and raw meat we were up before day break in order to reach Weymouth before 12:00 at which point 55kn gusts were predicted.

Lutine berthed in Yarmouth

Safety tethers were issued to the crew partly because of night sailing but also because of the poor forecast.

Five hours and 38 miles later after a very wet, windy and bumpy sail into 30kn of wind we arrived in Weymouth around 11:00. With two reefs in the main Lutine managed the conditions with ease and reached speeds upto 12kn. Special mentions go to Bill who had prepared Marmalade rolls for breakfast and also to Peter who navigated us safely around the live firing range in Lulworth Cove.

Mark looking after the Starbord Winch

Weymouth wasn’t very busy so managed to secure C2 berth which is located right in front of the Harbour office and facilities. The afternoon was spent catching up on sleep and drying out our gear.

Drying out

After a lazy afternoon and several pints in local hostileries we had an excellent dinner in Ming Wha, although 9 hungry sailors in a Chinese restaurant is always a recipe for confusion as you can imagine.

We have been using the Splitwiseapp app to divi up the bill between us, if only we could work it out.

After a tot of navy 100% proof rum we headed to our bunks for a good rest.

Next morning we woke to the smell of bacon and sizzling sausages being prepared by Kevin R who gets a special mention as odly enough he doesn’t eat meat.

Breakast for Hungy Sailors
The perks of being Commodore – Coffee in bed

We departed at 11:00 and set sail downwind for Lymington in what promised to be another fast sail in strong winds.

We were not disappointed, sailing under a reefed jib alone we reached speeds of 15 knots surfing down building seas in severe gales that gusted 45 knots.

Back in Lymington we strugled to find a restaurant open late on Sunday until eventually striking lucky with an excellent Sunday roast at the Ship Inn

After more heavy rain overnight we set sail East back to Gosport making the most of the persistent 27kn winds blowing in from the West.

OXO Lutine Crew back in Gosport

20th Anniversary

The 22nd of September 2021 was the 20th Anniversary for the club and so to celebrate our monthly meeting was turned into a special gathering. 20 years is an incredible milestone for a club as many fall by the wayside well before.

The celebration was held at The Crown Inn, Old Oxted where the 3 founding members of the club used to meet on an monthly basis and organise sailing trips.

Celebrating 20 year of Oxted Offshore

The event was well attended and we enjoyed plates of nibbles laid on by landlord Alan who remembers the first meetings taking place. Henry and Roger, two of the founders of the club entertained us with stories from when the club first started and we finished with a toast to Oxted Offshore and here’s to another 20 years.

The Crown Inn - Old Oxted
The Crown Inn – Old Oxted

RYA Day Skipper Practical Motor Course

I took a wander over to the dark side earlier this month and joined three other OXO members on a four day RYA Day Skipper Practical Motor Course. Being a yachtman I’ve never shown much interest in motor boats however our club does have an active motor boat section so I though it time to dip my toe.

202109 RYA Day Skipper Practical Motor Course
202109 RYA Day Skipper Practical Motor Course

The course was run by Mendez Marine and our instructor Monty took us through the RYA sylabus from engine checks through to nightime navigation. Based at Swanwick on the Hamble river our time was spent on Fenlad Dancer a Princess 368 fitted with two very large Cummings engines which could power the boat to 20 knots.

As well as covering the standard elements such as man over board, the course was very practical and focused heavily on building skills maneouvering the boat into some very tight spots taking into account the effects of wind a tide. Fortunately with our existing sailing experience we were able to tick off a lot of the RYA sylabus quite quickly and this allowed more time behind the controls.

We all thoroughly enjoyed the course and learned a lot of new skills along the way. My biggest take away was discovering just how maneoverable two engines can make a yacht when applied correctly.

View from the Flybridge

How an Oxted Offshore Octet became very lucky sailors

We were lucky enough to book Lutine for the weekend at the end of Cowes Week, with Paul May as skipper and a crew of 8 Oxted Offshore members. Lutine was carrying her full racing sail wardrobe, so an exciting weekend beckoned, especially when a low developed off the Scottish coast on Friday and delivered lively winds all weekend! Peter Puttock takes up the story:

The Oxted Offshore Octet with skipper

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Nick Nack sails to the sun 2019

After the rain and variable weather of our Round Britain trip in 2017 – 2018 we determined to go south for the sunshine in 2019, leaving Port Solent on Sunday 2 June.


After a very short “night” in Cowes, we battled into a fresh south westerly breeze at 4am towards the Needles bearing away for Cherbourg, which we reached 15 hours later. We were delayed there by storms for 3 days but eventually made it to St Peter Port, Guernsey (another 42 miles) with enough wind and not too much rain, arriving in time to take wine on board another boat we knew. However, our berth inside Victoria Marina exposed our stern to both wind and waves as soon as the tide allowed water over the sill and we spent an uncomfortable 48 hours there.

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