Geoff and I met many years ago at the Eastney Cruising Association (ECA) in Portsmouth. Our love for all things aquatic bringing us together. We married in 1988, closely followed by the birth of our 2 wonderful children Matthew in 1989 and Joanna in 1991. We both worked and studied throughout the next 25 years Geoff with Marconi and BAE and I joined the NHS in 1993. Throughout these years sailing was still a big part of our family life.
Geoff has sailed a variety of dinghies and yachts over his 56 years. His sailing career started at the age of 15 with a yachting world catamaran. He caught the sailing bug and spent the next 3 year sailing single handed catamarans, Unicorn, from the ECA. He then move in dinghy sailing in 1980 crewing on 505’s which took him around the world. Geoff then changed to helming singled handed dinghys and for the last 10 years helming a 4000 (Laser 4000) with me as his crew. . As for my sailing history, I raced a Topper , windsurfed and crewed a variety of club dinghies over the years until we decided to try racing the 4000 as a couple, this would test our sailing ability as well as at time our marriage! But we had a great time with the 4000 competing international and European events
In 1999 we decided that we would join the cruising community and bought a Westerly GK24 Snoopy. We not only cruised along the south coast but we raced her like a big dinghy and in 2000 came 4th overall in round the Island race. With matthew and Joanna getting bigger and we wanted to travel further afield we decided to buy a slightly larger cruiser in 2001 we bought a Sigma 33, Auditrac. It was in Auditrac that we first crossed the channel to france and the channel islands and our dream to buy a ‘big boat’ and ‘sail around the world’ was born.
In May 2015 we bought our big boat, a beautifully well maintain and loved Westerly Ocean 43, no 10 (of only 15 made) KINDRED SPIRIT.
Because we planned the trip for over 10 years we have had time to gather our nautical qualification as well as sailing as much as possible. Geoff has yachtmaster theory and practical. I have yatchmaster theory and dayskipper practical. We both have VHF radio licence, first aid, sea survival, safety at sea, SSB radio licence and radar courses. Geoff has recently taken his ocean master theory and I have my MCA first aid and I am completing my MCA care at sea course in April. We think taking these courses and putting the theory into practice will help us realise our dream, safely.