Sunday 7th April
7:00am - Quick breakfast and checking the weather forecast for North Foreland to Selsey Bill, which looked good.
07:50am – Check for messages in the inbox and a glance at Facebook to see that Darren has sent a message to say stay safe at sea which was nice of him.
11:20am – Arrived at Brighton marina after picking up crew. The sun is out and we are finally feeling the warmth. Collect the keys from the harbour office, then a full and thorough check of the vessel including engine and systems checks, radio and passage plan to Solent Coastguard under the new Solas V regulations.
12:30pm – We finally depart with a gentle easterly wind of force 3, slight swell in the channel.
Having sea trialled this vessel before I had plenty of confidence in her abilities. The passage plan took us on the inshore traffic zone, Beachy Head to Dungeness followed by a stop at Dover for fuel. With little traffic out there, and autopilot engaged we maintained our look out and logged our positions along whilst noting engine revs and temperatures.
16:45pm – Radio call to Dover port for permission to enter and we proceeded carefully to the marina for a refuel and further detailed engine checks, a call to the client for an update of our progress and we departed on the final leg to Harwich.
17:30pm – For such a light and nimble vessel as the Fairline Phantom 40 and with the tide against us strongly in the Dover Straits, we really noticed how well the boat was performing to push us through and past Ramsgate.
18:30pm – Collision regulations and giving way to two powerful wind generator work boats as they were heading home after a hard day transporting builders from one tower to the next. The return on the radar showed up what appeared to be millions of wind turbines; this was one big wind farm, which is a growing trend in British waters.
19:30pm – Navigating around the sand banks on the Thames proved fun and passed the time away quickly, but not for the faint hearted for those who would like to try it without training.
20:30pm – Arrival to Shotley Marina – Harwich, through the lock having woken up the keeper and he placed us on the berth close to the marina entrance gate.
21:00pm – Boat put to bed, logs closed after a long day and a text to the owner to notify of a safe arrival. A quick dash to the pub for last orders for food. Gosh we were hungry!
23:30pm – Bed!
Monday 8th April
07:00am – Breakfast on the go while routine checking was taking place on board. We were due to be lifted on to a container ship at 9am but due to delays of the ship arriving, we were finally lifted on to dry land at 11:30am. Captains always have to be patient with load masters as they are managing around 8-10 people. As usual, a final text to the owner along with a photo to show safe lifting of the vessel. Owner very happy!
11:30am – Travelling begins again on the road to Brighton to pick up the car and head to Southampton for another delivery that afternoon for JD Yachts.