Arrived Scarborough

Leg 2 / Day 2 Sunday 3pm

Duet and her crew have arrived in Scarborough having sailed non-stop from the River Orwell in Suffolk in challenging conditions. An easterly wind meant fast progress but lively sea conditions. The crew were keen to make some distance to the north before the wind began to blow from that direction and make conditions yet more uncomfortable.

“Despite the discomfort of seasickness the young people and their leaders did a great job” said Skipper Dawn.

Chart showing route from River Orwell to ScarboroughHaving sailed through the night, all on-board are looking forward to a good square meal, some sleep and a rest day tomorrow. Despite the difficult conditions, feedback from the crew is still positive. James says “Fantastic trip so far”. Dom said “The trip so far has been ‘very interesting!!!’” whilst Kannet says “I have had an amazing time”

Sailing the whole distance from Harwich without using the engine means that Duet has not charged her batteries so is telephoning her reports in rather than use valuable electrical power charging the laptop.

So far this leg has offered plenty of adventure for the group of young people. We can’t wait to see the photos. Congratulations to all on-board. What a great passage!




Royal Harwich Yacht Club

Leg 1 / Day 7

We were all up spritely ready to set sail. The early mornings now becoming the norm.

We sailed to Royal Harwich Yacht Club taking the long way round to use the sails for the last time – enjoying the beauty of Duet cutting through the waves one last time. Sara steered her in, Becki navagated her and the boys, Tom, Marshal and Craig did all the sails.

A good clean up, postcard writing and certificate giving ended our time on Duet. It was a challange that we met head on. An adventure that will last a life time.

Thank you.


Middle of the Medway to Burnham upon Crouch

Leg 1 / Day 4

A 4:45am wake-up made for a grouchy start for the group!

Anchors rising, unevenly cooked toast, a few choice words and we set off.

The Duet was expertly sailed to Burnham-upon-Crouch by the whole gang. Becky replaced Gavin as navigator as we all thought she was doing a better job. The waters got rough, drinks crashed about but we all remained calm and tacked the sails with skill.

Kelly threw up over the side but was well looked after by Craig and kept her smiling.

Tom salvaged lunch after a near miss that could have ended in Pot Noodles catastrophe.

Interior shot young people aboard DuetDocking in Burnham brought extra food rations and much needed space. Mashal being a true gentleman returned with a pretty pink rose for Kelly and Adele to brighten their day.

Bangers and Smash were wolfed down and showers were the best dessert we could have wished for.


London to the Medway

Leg 1 / Day 3  Our first day sailing.  Up at 5am (!!!!), breakfast and ready to sail for7am.

We said goodbye to showers, flush toilets and phone chargers and headed along the Thames, learning to sail as we went.  We learnt all about the different sails, how to ‘tack’ and all the boating lingo.

It was a smooth sail if we disregard running aground (twice), Craig’s attempt to take the boat hostage (in balaclava), Kelly’s little bout of seasickness and some thunder and lightning.

All the crew got involved and enjoyed learning new skills.  Craig said it was a day of emotions and we all realised what a challenge this trip was going to be.  Cups of tea kept everyone going and after a hearty stew its time to chill out for a little while before bed, ready for an even earlier start tomorrow!!


Lincoln to London

Leg 1/Day 1  Barnardo’s leaving care service Voyage to Success

Sara felt that it was exciting getting lost around London. However, it was a relatively easy journey down in the mini bus.

Pic of the young people on the road

When we reached the boat there was a stunned silence.  Everyone thought that it was a great boat but a little small downstairs – “cosy” was a work used a lot.  Craig said that it immediately felt like home. With the sun shining, the food and belongings stored away in every nook and cranny we could find we headed into East London in search of a feast.

After the support of a smart phone and a little discussion we walked to find Pizza Hut.  We ended up in Nandos!  Becki particularly enjoyed the chicken and described it as “Nom”.  After a dessert of ice cream and Sara’s sore feet covered in plasters we headed back to the boat which was sparkling in the evening sun at Limehouse Marina.

We all sat with Gav and got a safety briefing.  Craig found innuendos in everything but we all listened and realised that communication was going to be the key to the success of our journey.

With the boys in the bow and the girls in the saloon we settled down for the night.  Adele found it a squeeze to get in her bunk (much to the amusement of Sara, Becki and Kelly) and tried to get some sleep eager for the week ahead.

Pic of arrival at Duet


New sails for Duet centenary

Young people from the BSA scout Troop 184 from Surrey were the first to test Duet’s new working topsail this weekend. Two new sails have been especially made for the her centenary year which marks 52 years in the service of young people.

It felt very much like she was wearing a brand new pair of white trainers as the sail was set alongside four other rather less new sails but the new sail gave her the extra turn of speed we were hoping for. The topsail is set above the mainsail and is great for catching the slightly faster winds to be found 10m above sea level.

She also has a new Jackyard Topsail – not tried this weekend which is bigger and will be very useful in lighter airs.

Duet is likely to encounter every sort of wind in her eleven week Voyage to Success around the coast this summer and no doubt the new topsails will see plenty of action!




Follow the Voyage to Success

She may be 100 years old but Duet is still finding new challenges. This year she embraces social media for the Voyage to Success 2012. This is your chance to follow Duet in her work with the Cirdan Trust as young people sail her around Britain to mark her centenary and the London 2012 Games.

This Cirdan Trust voyage will be interactive like none before it. A unique opportunity to follow the voyage ‘blow by blow’ (hopefully around force 4 or 5 and not from ahead).

Each of the 11 groups that will be sailing in relay around the coast will be providing regular updates to these pages and of course there is Facebook and Twitter (links to the right of this page). Please go there now to follow our progress and don’t forget this is interactive so please add your comments.

All this technology is so new to Duet that we have even had to fit her with an inverter so that she can power a laptop. A traditional ‘classic’ laptop of course – and gaff rigged naturally!

Voyage crew hoist a sail

All smiles now but have you seen the forecast!