Leg 3 Champion lights the Olympic Cauldron

Callum Airlie, the Voyage to Success 2012 Champion for Leg 3, was one of seven promising young sports men and women to be asked to light the Olympic cauldron at the climax of the Opening Ceremony on Friday evening.

We had heard that Callum had been invited to perform a duty at the Opening Ceremony but its exact nature was kept a closely guarded secret.

It has been an amazing year for the young sailor, who presented certificates to young people from Deckham Community Centre (Leg 3) on the same day as he carried the Olympic Torch through his home town. By an extraordinary coincidence the evening of the Opening Ceremony was Callum’s 17th birthday! Within hours of lighting the cauldron Callum had to fly to Austria to compete in the 420 Youth World Championships in Austria.

His mother Julie Robson said: “He lit the cauldron and he was on a plane at 6.30am to Austria. He turned 17 today. I think it is a case of feelings are beyond description – proud does not touch it. I think I will watch it a couple of times to know that it was not a dream and it was him. I think he is a bit like that.”
The two-time Optimist UK National Champion was nominated to be among the final seven by double Olympic sailing champion Shirley Robertson. He has been competing internationally since 2008.

Duet is due to depart Weymouth tomorrow crewed by a group of young people from York Children’s Services.

Sir Steve Redgrave hands the torch to the young athletes who will light the cauldron

Sir Steve Redgrave hands the torch to the young athletes who will light the cauldron


Leg 3 Champion in Olympic Opening Ceremony

Callum Airlie, our champion for leg 3 who presented achievement awards to the young crew in Eyemouth, has been invited to participate in a ‘special part’ of the Olympic Opening Ceremony.   We are not sure what the ‘special part’ is or what Callum will be doing but why not look out for him and report back to the blog if you spot him.

After the ceremony Callum is off to Austria to compete in the 420 World Championships followed by Italy for the 420 Junior European Championships as a member of Team GB. Good Luck Callum.



What an achievement

Leg 3 / Day 6

Callum Airlie presents certificates to Leg 3The young people from Deckham Community Centre were justly pleased with themselves as they were presented with certificates of achievement and RYA Competent Crew qualifications at the end of a challenging Leg from Hartlepool.

They were joined, on Thursday evening, by members of the Leg 4 group who start their Leg aboard Duet on Saturday. “I think the new crew was very funny and easy to get along with. I didn’t think I would acheive my certificate but I did” said Bethany. “I am very proud of what I have done. The expereince was great fun and it was good to meet new people.”

The Leg 3 Champion Callum Airlee came straight from his own moment of honor when he carried the Olympic Torch through his home town earlier in the day.

“Callum seemed down to earth” said Conner, “and the new crew seem canny”. 

“It was nice to show the new crew what we have learned and really good to get my certificate. I didn’t think I would stay but I did and I really enjoyed myself” said Kyra

The young people were also congratulated by their group leaders.

“Well done Deckham crew. You worked really hard and I am very, very proud of you” said Ashley.

Rounding off the evening the group leader Steve congratulated the young people and wished the new crew well “I am proud of our young people for getting their RYA Competent Crew certificates. Tonight was really good and it was great to meet someone who has carried the Olympic Torch for our country. Thank you Callum and good luck to the new crew.”

Crews of Leg 3 and Leg 4 meet

Crews of Leg 3 and Leg 4 meet in Eyemouth with ex-Harbour Master Jonny Johnson




Holy Island to Eyemouth

Leg 3 / Day 6

Conner . . .Lovely weather and it was nice all the way along the coast. We went back to the shop so here’s a shout-out to Gary from the island shop on Holy Island!

We rowed at Holy Island and and got attacked by some seals. They were so close that we could basically touch them. We did some Competent Crew knowledge and we plotted our course out and then left for Eyemouth. On the way the weather was lovely and the waves were high but alright..

Bethany . . .Today, we set sail to Eyemouth from Holy Island. It was a great big challenge because with it being windy, we could hardly do anything. My best part off today was when me and Kyra were singing and dancing to songs.

I didn’t like the waves, because it made me have a headache. Steven had fallen onto his hands and knees. Dawn was very worried, as she had thought that Steven had fallen off the side (over board).

Me and Kyra helped put the sails away. We felt okay until we went downstairs to make the food, when Kyra accidentally cut her finger open with a cheese grater. Dawn had to get the first-aid kid and bandage it up. It wasn’t that bad.

Kyra . . . Today on our sail to Eyemouth we got caught in big waves. I thought that they were going to soak me. The weather was very cold, although I didn’t put my coat on.

My best part about today was when me and Bethany were singing whilst we were on watch to look out for lobster pots. I think that the worst part about today was when I and Bethany had to do the cooking and I cut my finger and blood went everywhere. I liked today  as I loved Holy Island.


Arrived Eyemouth

Leg 3 / Day 6

Exhausted crew following arrival in Eyemouth

Exhausted crew following arrival in Eyemouth

Congratulations to the crew of Duet who have arrived in Eyemouth to conclude a challenging voyage from Hartlepool. They are now resting before making preparations to join members of the group who will sail Leg 4, for a fish and chip supper this evening.

Also joining them for the supper will be the Champion for Leg 4, Callum Airlee, a 16 year old sailor who represents Great Britain racing 420 dinghies. Callum will congratulate the crew and present them with V2S badges and certificates of achievement.

Today is also a big day for Callum who will be carrying the Olympic Torch through his home town today.

The young people from Deckham Community Centre will bid farewell to Duet tomorrow with a the new group joining on Saturday.


At Holy Island

Leg 3 / Day 5

Bethany . . .Today we arrived at Holy Island. No-one was sick apart from Steven. We put our life-jackets on with our waterproofs. We had a look around at the buildings, castles, ships, etc . . .I bought presents for my family. Kyra and I found shells on the beach. I also found a live crab. Conner found a dead one and a crabs claw too. It was massive.

Kyra . . . We arrived at Holy Island at 11:55. We put the sails down in two teams. We made sandwiches (tuna and sweetcorn). After we had our sandwiches we cleaned the boat from top to bottom. Me and Bethany washed the dishes and dried them. Steven did the cooker and Conner and Ashley did the saloon and the heads. After that, we got the dinghy and went onto land to explore. Bethany and Conner found crabs and I found shells and pottery. Later we got onto the boat and drew the boat while we waited for out tea.

Conner. . .We left quite early but not to early. It was a short sail at only 1 hour and 30 minutes. We arrived for 12 but had to have a happy hour (cleaning) which lasted for about 3 hours, but then we went ashore. W had a look around and had to return at 7:00pm. After buying Dawn and Gavin Kit Kats and we had ice creams. We also had a story competition. We had a look on the beaches for crabs.


Our Champion for Leg 3 of the Voyage to Success 2012

The Champion for Leg 3 is Callum Airlie who at the age of 16 has been a GBR dinghy sailing squad member since 2008. He has twice been awarded RYA Scotland Young Sailor of the Year and this year represents Great Britain in the 420s European and World series. He is a Bank of Scotland ‘Local Hero’.

Callum will be carrying the Olympic Torch through the town of Gordon on Thursday before welcoming the Duet crew to nearby Eyemouth where he will present the young people from Deckham Community Centre with Certificates of Achievement.


He says . . .

“Sailing is one of life’s great levellers: it doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from, or how much money you have. There is nothing to match that sense of freedom and achievement you feel whilst battling across the open sea. It is just you, your crewmates and the forces of nature. Go out there, give it your all, and most importantly, enjoy it!”

Callum Airlie (Helm) with Joe Butterwirth at 2011 National Championships

Callum Airlie (Helm) with Joe Butterwirth at 2011 National Championships


North Shields – Farne Islands – Holy Island

Leg 3 / Day 3 

Anchored at the Farne Islands

"We have come to a place that is trapped in time!!" Conner

Conner . . .The sail started well until after dinner when I was sick. But I soldiered on and eventually became well again. Unfortunately it was very, very cold.

As we sailed, time caught up and we had to drop the sail and motor inside The Kettle. We had an alright sleep in the Kettle at the Inner Farne Islands. After debrief it was seriously surreal and trapped in time. I started to miss home, but mainly my dog as I’m used to it waking me up in the morning.

Bethany . . . The weather yesterday was a little windy but sunny too. Yesterday we sailed approximately 65 miles. However, I am missing my family and my house. I also miss my dog. I am looking forward to tomorrow.

Dawn and Gavin are very kind and helpful. We ate our food downstairs whilst the boat was rocking. It was a very big challenge. Me and Kyra kept falling asleep and everyone was being sick all over.

Tomorrow I am going to try harder at not falling asleep. Today, the weather is very warm and sunny. I feel better now.

Ashley . . . Woke up this morning with a struggle feeling rough after an unsettled night. Breakfast was lush though, poached egg on toast.

The young people worked well today. Got the sails up ‘ne bosh’ and were quick to respond to instructions. Later on we were struck down by unfortunate weather and more sea sickness. We all carried on to the best of our ability.

The evening went on late into the night. The young people were falling asleep standing with heavy hearts and heavy eyelids.

Steven . . . Today has been a long and tiring day. We were able to sail for most of the journey. However, for the last 2 hours the tide was going against us. We ate our lunch and evening meal on the go which was quite a challenge when the boat is being rocked all over the place.

I was very proud of the young people today as they soldiered on with their work though they were falling asleep. It has been a great day for sailing.

I feel that the young people have really perked-up today and are trying to get the most out of what they have learnt so far.

A lesson that I feel we have all learnt from today’s sail is, even if it is sunny, we should still wear our waterproofs.

We have anchored at Holy Island now so that we can get the boat cleaned up and have a good look around the island.

Conner . . .  We woke up and had to having to flake anchor chain. Once we did this and had breakfast the sun came out so that we could sail most of the way. Once we got near we dropped the sail. The sun was glorious.

The wildlife is very, very friendly and inquisitive. Now we are anchored there is no rocking and we are fine below and above deck.

Ashley . . .I felt nice and fresh today we sailed from Farne Islands to Holy Island.

The weather is beautiful we had our breakfast. I felt very sick but after when I ate it I felt alright. The weather is a lot calmer.

Onward we travel. I got twanged just below the eye with a bungee cord but carried on ‘cos that’s how I roll!

After sailing for a tad, we anchored at Holy Island. We have made friends with lots of seals.  Motivation, energy and general feeling is at a high. Time to go and explore…



No fog on the Tyne

Leg 3 / Day 2+

Kyra . . .Easy sail, no waves as we went along the River Tyne. We looked at the buildings on both sides of us. The Millennium Bridge at Newcastle had to be elevated to let the Duet boat through. The weather was a bit damp and sunny.

Ashley . . . Weather was good. Everyone was tired and fed up. Responding well to jobs on deck. We looked at what people were selling on the quay.

Sailed back to North Shields. Had a shower. Missing home at this point but a quick phone call sorted me out.

Woke up this morning we sailed back to North Shields on the boat and got a shower. After that I felt much better. I really enjoyed the sail. The best place was North Shields.

Bethany . . .It was an easy calm sail. There were no waves. I felt okay when we stopped the boat. I really enjoyed it and thought that it was very interesting too. I think that having to steer the boat was quite hard.

Conner - Nice trip, easy sail and no waves. As we went along the Tyne we looked at the buildings on both sides and navigated underneath the millennium bridge. We had time to go on land and look inside the Baltic. Then back on board, along the Tyne and harboured in Royal Quays. And this allowed everyone to have a shower and get clean. We slept very well. No sickness.