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Mike Tomkinson:  

I started sailing in a Cadet in 1951, progressing to a GP14, which I raced for a time and then started cruising. 8 weeks in the West of Scotland after the Midnight race to the Isle of Man (in a 1908 Albert Strange yawl) gave me a lot of fun and experience before going to university. Crossing the Irish Sea in an 18 foot gaff sloop was an adventure- of which Father disapproved, it was his boat.


On leaving university I joined the Royal Naval Reserve and gained experience in practical marine engineering and seamanship. I bought a 470, which I still sail but less vigorously than 45 years ago.

More cruising over the years, in which Gillie participated happily (well, mostly) and the odd bit of racing. Ferry trips for our friends were good fun and sometimes hard work. At some point acquired a Bridge Watchkeeping Certificate from Her Majesty and a Yachtmaster (Offshore).

The sailing continued, with various light hearted attempts at Cowes Week.

After an interesting couple of years with a Cork 1720 (26 foot racer), I looked around for a retirement project. I found it and had to sell the 1720.



Gillie Tomkinson:

I used to work at RORC- which was enormous fun, but a long time ago!


Over the years I have enjoyed my sailing providing it was not too rough. Not my cup of tea, getting soaked and cold. But we have gone round Scotland, Ireland and parts of Wales when it was not so fashionable and at that time you were really on your own.


I really enjoy our boating now- really a mobile caravan most of the time- and look forward to many more years afloat.




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Gillie and Mike Tomkinson