72. Another Day In The Office ….. and meanwhile down in Portsmouth ……

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DATO25806444227_a864a2f918_bRegular readers will be aware that shortly after my Level 3 training I was “in the office” at the Harwich Haven Authority onboard the 210,000 ton container ship OOCL Indonesia (see Blog 58: My post-Level-3-training Day at the Office, published 16 April). On Tuesday of this week I was at it again but this time on something hundreds of times smaller, the Harwich Haven Authority’s own survey vessel, the Egret.


Accompanying the Harbourmaster, one of our legal advisors and two representatives from the Department for Transport, we passed some of the biggest deep water berths in DATO220190820_150027the Authorities jurisdiction to visit possibly the smallest jetty right at the southern edges of our area, at Great Oakley, which included another of our areas of Special Scientific DATO220190820_145133Interest. As the old adage goes, “there was lots of water, it was just very thinly spread!” and the visit was only possible on or around High Water. At Low water the berth, and much of the approach channel, dries out. It was a beautiful day with plenty of small craft around and even the seals took an interest in our visit.








Meanwhile, back in Portsmouth ….. on the same day and after an excellent Prep Week (more of that to follow) the Clipper Fleet slipped lines from Gosport to sail round to St Katherine’s Dock, London ahead of a whole series of events in the capital and race start on Sunday 1st September….. MUCH MORE to follow ……..




There are now 8 Days, 11 Hours, 42 Minutes and 10 Seconds until RACE START …….

71. Descending Dragons……. the latest team and future host port partner

The Countdown clock on the official clipper website tells me that, as I start writing this blog, there are 24 Days, 18 Hours, 23 Minutes and 10 Seconds to go until Race Start, but who’s counting?? Actually I AM. Although I don’t start racing on 1st September I will be there on the day and I still have much to do before starting out for South America in early October.

One of the crocodiles nearest the canoe is Prep Week and I will be joining some fellow UNICEF crew members down in Gosport this coming Saturday for the final Portsmouth based preparations before the Clipper fleet leaves Portsmouth on Tuesday 20th August for St Katherine’s Dock. An even nearer crocodile is that I am still a number of blogs “missing” from the list I produced in Blog 65 (Rather Like London Buses …. nothing for AGES and then more than you know what to do with! published 19 Jul 2019), most notably the UNICEF Team Building Weekend and Level 4 training, in order to get up to date prior to Prep Week and, just when I thought it was safe to start typing, along comes another Clipper announcement.

You will recall that at the end of the blog before last (Blog 69: Clipper yacht branding – almost complete, published 29 Jul 2019)  I mentioned that there were, at the time of writing, two “un-named” yachts in the 2019-2020 edition. Well not anymore. This week has seen the announcement that Quang Ninh Province in northeast Vietnam has signed a two edition deal with the Clipper Race that will see a team entry this year followed by an appearance as a Host Port Partner in 2021-2022. The Quang Ninh Province is home to the UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site Ha Long Bay and this years team entry will be called “Ha Long Bay, Vietnam.”

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Recognised twice as a World Natural Heritage site by UNESCO, Ha Long Bay is a stunning destination and, unsurprisingly, northern Vietnam’s number one tourism hub. The name “Ha Long” means “descending dragons” and local legend has it that after fighting invaders, Mother Dragon and her children decided to stay in the mortal world forever and turned into thousands of islands scattered on the Bay to protect this sacred land. So “team Josh” becomes Team “Ha Long Bay Vietnam.”



70. Advert time ……. go on, it’s for a great cause.

Lindy Scarborough, one of our growing number of UNICEF crew supporters and wife of fellow team mate Graham Scarborough (Leg 7),  is a professional jeweller and has been busy in her workshop (now known as the Boat Yard) designing and making solid silver stylised designer Clipper necklaces and earrings. Initially Lindy made one for herself to wear at the Crew Allocation Day back in May but they have attracted such widespread interest that, after consultation with UNICEF and Clipper Ventures plc, Lindy has stepped up production.

Each piece is handmade in solid sterling silver. There are two sizes of necklace available. Medium with an 18 inch chain at £89.00 and Large (a statement piece) with a 28 inch chain at £139.00 – both prices are plus special delivery p&p charged at cost. 20% of any sales will be given to the team UNICEF charity fundraising effort.

if you are interested in either the necklaces or the earrings then please e-mail Lindy direct at mel@msj.org.uk (she knows I am posting this) and before you ask, of course I’m placing an order!