Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need previous sailing experience?

Certainly not. Many of our students begin with absolutely no sailing experience. Each level of certification requires a specified amount of time at sea but that can be gained during your course. See our Courses page for more information.

I already have some experience. Can I start with the Day Skipper course or do I need to get my Competent Crew certificate first?

If you already have suitable sailing experience, you may be able to miss out the earlier courses. There is however, a lot to learn and students are often surprised to find how much they don’t know. Our Courses page has more information on the level of pre-course experience recommended by the RYA.

If you are still not sure, don’t worry. Our instructors will assess your ability and advise during the course.

Do I need to bring waterproofs?

If you do not have your own waterproofs, we have plenty on board for you to use. Our what-to-bring page gives more details.

What about sailing boots?

We do not provide footwear. (Other people’s boots are not always pleasant.) If you have sailing boots, bring them but they are not essential.

Will I be allowed to take the helm on a competent crew course?

Yes, most certainly. Boat handling is one of the first skills you will learn. In fact, you will probably do more helming during the early stages of your training than later when navigation skills become more important.

Are some course dates specifically for beginners, day skippers, yachtmasters etc?

No. We try to arrange for a mix of abilities on each course. That way, each person will get more chance to practice the skills that they need.

What privacy is there aboard?

Our boats are a good size (30 – 35 & 36′ ft) and are built to sleep up to eight but we rarely have more than four students plus the skipper aboard. There are two good sized cabins aft, one in the bow plus berths in the saloon so by general sailing standards, there is plenty of space and privacy.

What meals are included in the price?

We provide breakfast, lunches, evening meals when night sailing and nonalcoholic drinks while on board but when we eat ashore, you will have to pay for your own food and drinks.

Might I be seasick?

Around one in twelve students suffer from seasickness initially but they are generally fine from then on. We usually stay in the river estuary for the first day to practice general boat handling skills and give new students a chance to get their “sea legs”. If you are worried, take sea sickness pills as a precaution. They are usually very effective.

I have a medical condition. Might it be a problem?

If you think that it may be, please telephone us for advice.

To get answers to other questions or to book call or email us on

07557 474160