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  First club cruise, July 2017 New Page 1

Following discussion at the AGM, it was decided to experiment by offering two club cruises this year; reviving a concept that was popular with club members 20 years ago.  The first of these took place straight after Cantley Regatta, with the idea being that members would cruise between our own event and the EACC Summer Regatta at Thurne.

On the day, only Vixen, Pelican and Retribution made passage north through Yarmouth on the Monday lunchtime tide; White Rose having sadly woken up with a broken bowsprit the day before, so being unable to join the cruise as planned.  The three boats fetched up at Upton, on a lovely sunny evening, marred only by the melodious tones of a hedge trimmer, which encouraged us into the White Horse a little earlier than planned.  Outside the pub, a lawn mower was being operated....  Several pleasant pints later, all retired to their respective boats to eat before reconvening for wine on Retribution.

Tuesday saw a gentle sail upriver to Womack, where provisions were taken on board and a lunchtime endured in the back yard of the King's Arms.  An excellent sail in a good easterly to St Benets then followed, where all three boats were able to moor in line for a Commodorial Pimms party, followed by a group barbecue in the late sunshine.  Retribution had to leave on Wednesday, but Pelican and Vixen proceeded up the Ant to Sutton, where they sell very fine beer in the Sutton Staithe Hotel and enjoyable conversation was held with other holiday makers in the sunshine of the beer garden.

Vixen then made her way to Neatishead, without benefit of any diesel, but rather  by means of some experimental quanting by the crew and a grand sail across Barton Broad.  Here Pelican awaited her and more Pimms was taken before retiring to the White Horse for a pleasant meal.  Thursday saw the return downriver, pausing at Ludham Bridge, where the pub was visited (or revisited as far as the Commodore was concerned, following a walk there from St Benets with Tony Knights on Tuesday). The beer was good, but not as good as two days previously...

While sitting there, ominous rumbles of thunder were heard.  The consensus was that it was too far to return to shut the boats up, so more beer was taken, while it rained.  A pause in the weather and we returned to the boats and hastily set off to try our luck at obtaining a Ranworth mooring.  Then the heavens opened and it RAINED.  It was two rather soggy vessels which tied up at Ranworth and retired for tea and cake.  Revived and after Pimms and a meal on board, the pub was visited.  Rude not to, really.

On Friday Vixen enjoyed a sail down to Acle Bridge, where Pedro's was investigated for refreshments.  This lunchtime was most notable for the taming of the parasol shade over the table, which was skillfully achieved with the judicious use of a scavenged wedge of wood and a dog lead.  Then it was another sail upriver to Thurne Dyke, where a meal was eaten in the recently reopened Thurne Lion, followed by a most welcome invasion of EACC members, leading to a rather late, but very convivial night.

Vixen moved over to the EACC moorings on Saturday, while Pelican migrated off for a pleasant lunchtime at Womack.  Joe Farrow turned up, with Sue Hines, in a half decker and we all proceeded to participate in and thoroughly enjoy the Thurne Roundabout.  A three legged course was set and helms could go round the buoys, in any order, as often as they wished. but only once in any given boat.  This saw a great deal of boat swapping, of crews helming and of wives beating their husbands over the water.  48 circuits were completed in the 6 hours allowed, setting a new world record!  In the evening, a DIY barbecue under a splendid sunset and a full moon rounded off the day nicely.

On Sunday, sadly, it was time to slowly migrate back down the Bure for a late evening crossing of Breydon.  Coming to rest at Goodchild's, a final meal out at the King's Head in Belton was enjoyed and a last glass of wine taken together before bidding our farewells.  The week cannot really be said to have been a success as a club cruise in terms of the number of boats participating, but those of us who were there had a thoroughly good time in mostly excellent weather.


last edited on:  10/07/2017 at 21:13   by: The Editor