September 2014 - Velos

A 29-year-old man from Leeds arrested by the National Crime Agency (NCA) yesterday in connection with a suspected plot to smuggle cocaine on a yacht has been bailed pending further enquiries.


Additionally, a 55-year-old woman arrested at an address in West Yorkshire as part of the same investigation has also been bailed.

In total seven people have been arrested in connection with the seizure of one tonne of cocaine, made by the Irish Naval Service on board the yacht Makayabella on 23 September.
A 43-year-old man arrested by the NCA at an address in Leeds last Wednesday, 24 September, was subsequently bailed pending further enquiries.
Stephen Powell, 47, of Netherfield Road, Guisely was charged and appeared before Leeds Magistrates on Saturday. He was remanded in custody until Monday 13 October when he is due to appear at Leeds Crown Court.

What happened?
One tonne of the Class A drug cocaine was seized from a 62ft yacht off the coast of Ireland on 23 September, which had been sailed from the Carribbean.

If cut and sold in the UK, this drug haul would have a street value in excess of £100million.

Three crew members, all from West Yorkshire – John Powell, aged 70, of Airedale Mews, Silsden; Benjamin, Mellor, aged 35, of Mornington Villas, Bradford; and Thomas Britteon, aged 28, of Convamore Road, Grimsby – were detained and questioned by Ireland’s national police service An Garda Síochána.

All three have been charged with possessing cocaine with intent to import.

On 26 September, a 25ft motorboat called Sea Breeze was seized by NCA officers from a marina in Pwllheli, North Wales and forensically examined. Investigators believe the motorboat was to be used to meet up with the yacht Makayabella in the Atlantic.

NCA branch commander David Norris, who is leading the investigation, said: ‘This has been a complex and fast moving investigation, involving law enforcement agencies in the UK, Ireland, Europe and South America.

‘Our enquiries are continuing.’

See article at Pratical Boat Owner – click here



Categories: Yacht smuggling

Motorboat & Yachting: The Royal Mint has released a new nautical-themed £20 coin to mark the 100th anniversary of the start of World War One.


Nautical numismatics will surely delight at the new design from the Royal Mint, which depicts Britannia seeing off British ships at the start of World War One.

The design was launched this week (24 September) to commemorate 100 years since the advent of The Great War, and aims to capture the art deco style that was prevalent at the time.

Minted in fine silver, this collector’s coin is available to order for the face value of £20, although with the run limited to 250,000, that value is likely to rise over time.

The limited-edition design follows a previous run of 250,000 £20 coins that were released last year and have already completely sold out.

John Burgdahl, sculptor and designer, said: “I decided to use the figure of Britannia in order to represent all of the allies who took part, most of whom were British or drawn from the British Empire.

“I combined inspiration from two sources: the South African medal for war services and the First World War memorial plaque awarded to those who died.”

See article at Motorboat & Yachting – click here



Categories: News

Motorboat & Yachting: It’s important to introduce kids to boating at a young age, but this girl would have been better off staying on dry land.


A 16-year-old female was arrested in Sydney on Wednesday (24 September) after she was spotted taking a joyride on a 52ft flybridge. The incident was reported by Peter Estephan, who recognised the boat as his friend Allan’s when he spotted it passing under a bridge.

After a quick call to the owner, who was on holiday in Hawaii at the time, Mr Estephan called the police. “Everyone was saying: ‘Relax, who’s going to steal a boat?’ But I knew that Allan was overseas. I wasn’t gonna stop, I just knew something was wrong,” he later told Fairfax Media. Botany Bay Water Police were eventually dispatched to bring the alleged joyride to a halt.

The stolen Riviera-style boat, which has an e stimated value of $1.8m AUD (£969,000), was later returned to St George Motor Boat Club with minor graffiti damage. All four of those found on board were arrested on site and are due to appear in court over the coming weeks.

See article at Motorboat & Yachting – click here




Categories: Boats

Motorboat & Yachting: Camper & Nicholsons has listed Chris Evans’ Sunseeker 37M The Snapper for just under £5million.


International yacht broker Camper & Nicholsons has recently listed a very interesting 37M Sunseeker yacht, which has two very careful, and notable, previous owners. The Snapper was built in 2007 for F1 pundit Eddie Jordan, who later sold it to The One Show presenter and Radio 2 host Chris Evans.

Any aspiring owner hoping to join this illustrious lineage will need to shell out just under £5million, but they will get a lot of boat for their money. The Snapper is powered by twin 2,812hp MTU engines, which can propel its Don Shead-designed hull to a cruising speed of 18 knots and on to a top-speed of 23 knots.

Five cabins allow twelve guests to relax in the utmost of comfort, while a crew of eight can also be accommodated on board. Key features include a sun deck Jacuzzi, a variety of watersports equipment, two saloons, and a full-size dining area, while the master cabin takes advantage of the full 8m beam. All enquiries should be directed to Camper & Nicholsons’ Antibes office, fender kickers need not apply.

See article at Motorboat & Yachting – click here



Categories: Boats

A fundraising campaign has been launched in memory of British sailors Paul Whitehouse and Simone Wood who tragically died in Hurricane Odile, which struck the Mexican coast last week.


Paul and Simone had moved over to America on 24 December 2012 from Wolverhampton and London respectively, to chase their dream. Their intention was to open a scuba diving charter company and live on a yacht, moving from island to island.

When Hurricane Odile struck at around 2am on 15 September 2014, the couple’s yacht Tobasco II was anchored in the bay off La Paz, in the state of Baja California Sur, where they both made numerous friends.

Paul and Simone had fully prepared their yacht and themselves for the hurricane but somehow the boat was lost to the sea. It sank, with just the masts sticking up out of the water.

Paul and Simone were declared missing. An 8 man liferaft was discovered on the beach which friends of the couple hoped was theirs.

A search commenced in the daylight hours of Monday to no avail. Air searches commenced the following day, with the Navy performing sea searches and friends and community performing land searches. 

The community that Paul and Simone had became very good friends with worked tirelessly until on 19 September 2014 when Simone’s body was recovered. Paul was still missing. Rescuers vowed to continue the search until he was found. This happened on Sunday, 21 September 2014.

50k fundraising campaign
Now the brothers of the lost sailors, Simone’s brother Clive and Paul’s brother Jon Whitehouse have launched a fundraising campaign to raise funds for the devastated community, in thanks for the rescuers recovering their loved ones and providing closure.

Jon said: ‘Clive and myself would like to raise money in memory of Paul and Simone and send it over to the Club president to try and help put the area back to a condition where others can “chase their dreams” also.

‘Words are never enough to show our appreciation to all involved.’

See full article and how to donate at Pratical Boat Owner – click here



Categories: Fundraising

Yachting & Boating World: A recreational fisherman died after falling overboard off the coast of Cornwall in December last year. The fatal overboard man could have been saved had he had adequate safety equipment, finds an investigation by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch.


Christopher Newton went to sea alone on his 3.9m long boat Amy Jane on 4 December 2013, but failed to return home. Concerned friends and family later raised the alarm with the local coastguard and a search operation began off the coast of Cornwall to locate the 57-year-old.

After an hour, rescue crews found Mr Newton semi-conscious in the water and recovered him on board. He was airlifted to hospital, where he was later declared deceased.

It’s not known how the fisherman came to enter the water, but an investigation into the fatality found that he didn’t have a VHF radio on board and was not wearing a kill cord or personal locator beacon (PLB), meaning he had no way of raising the alarm.

The report said: “The decision to go fishing alone in early December without adequate safety equipment, and without giving his friends and family precise instructions on what to do should he not return at an agreed time, cost the recreational fisherman his life. “Had he been wearing a PLB, his chances of survival would have been significantly increased.” Mr Newton, who had not fished out of Cadgwith single-handed before, died of hypothermia and drowning.


See article at Yachting & Boating World – click here



Categories: Accident

The Ocean Cleanup project has successfully completed its crowd funding campaign. With the support of more than 38,000 funders from 160 countries, in 100 days more than US $2million has been raised.


The project, founded by 20-year-old Dutchman Boyan Slat when he was just 17, aims to clean the oceans of plastics using a system of long floating arms attached to the seabed, so that ‘the oceans can basically clean themselves.

Thanks to the successful funding campaign, the next step, which comprises the construction and testing of large-scale operational pilots, can now be initiated.

The Ocean Cleanup will now assemble a new team to lead the research, and plans to start the pilot phase next month. The team projects the first pilot will hit the ocean within a year.

A series of up-scaling tests will ultimately result in a fully operational offshore cleanup array by 2017.



Crowd funding record-breaker
Boyan Slat, CEO of The Ocean Cleanup Foundation, said: ‘Plastic pollution has been recognised by the UN as one of the major environmental challenges facing mankind in the 21st century.

“The crowd funding received so far enables us to start the Pilot Phase, in which we push the concept from feasible to executable. ‘Hence, we are very grateful to all of whom have supported us worldwide, all crowd funding and professional in kind contributors, as well as the many volunteers and ambassadors who invested their enthusiasm, and gave us the confidence to keep going.

In June this year, Boyan Slat presented The Ocean Cleanup’s feasibility study – a 530-page report, authored by 70 scientists and engineers – proposing a viable method to clean half of the so-called ‘Great Pacific Garbage Patch’ within 10 years’ time.

At the same time, a crowd funding campaign was launched, aiming to collect $2million within 100 days. The target had been achieved in 98 days.After completion, US $2,154,282 had been raised via 38,615 donors, making it ‘the most successful non-profit crowd funding campaign in history’, according to crowd funding platform ABN AMRO’s SEEDS, who facilitated the campaign.

See article at Pratical Boat Owner – click here



Categories: marine environment

Bart’s Bash, the Guinness World Record attempt for the Largest Sailing Race in the World, will take place globally between 0.00 and 23.59 GMT this Sunday 21 September 2014.

The inaugural fundraising event, on 21 September 2014, is being organised by the Andrew Simpson Sailing Foundation.

It looks set to break the world record for the Largest Sailing Race (24 hours) with 13,247 sailors, from 748 clubs across 65 countries already signed up online at

So far the event has raised £102,084.90 for the charity, which aims to inspire young people into the sport of sailing.

Registration for Bart’s Bash will remain open until the day of the event. To find out which clubs are taking part in your country, click here.

The aim of Bart’s Bash is to remember Britain’s Olympic gold and silver medallist Andrew ‘Bart’ Simpson, who tragically died during an America’s Cup training accident in May 2013.

All the funds raised through Bart’s Bash will support the development and delivery of the Foundation’s charitable programmes internationally.

These programmes have Bart’s and the Olympic values at their heart, and are currently being developed and tested at the Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre. Pilot programmes are also being tested in Bermuda and South Africa.

Big name participants include Sir Ben Ainslie, Iain Percy OBE, Paul Goodison MBE, Jimmy Spithill, Nathan Outteridge, Max Sirena plus many other Olympians and world sailing stars.

So far 471 sailing clubs have signed up to take part across the UK, including the new Andrew Simpson Sailing Centre, based at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy.

Each sailing club will sail an individual Bart’s Bash race at their location (with certain requirements to meet the world record criteria).

What’s happening?
At the Weymouth and Portland venue, the first race will begin at 11am, with Olympic gold medallists Iain Percy and Paul Goodison competing alongside local clubs and sailors. Iain will be racing with Andrew Simpson’s young son Freddie.

The event will include a youth race,  a prize giving ceremony at 4.30pm, plus a Pico Challenge – open to anyone, children’s entertainments, a barbecue and bar.

Sir Ben Ainslie will be competing at Queen Mary Sailing Club, Queen Mary Reservoir from 11am, while in Gosport at the Clipper Race Yacht Club, nine of the 12 Clipper Race fleet will compete with sailing stars including Sir Robin Knox-Johnston. The event will coincide with the fifth annual Red Socks regatta in memory of Colin de Mowbray.

At the PSP Southampton Boat Show, a Bart’s Bash Race will take place at 1pm, with competitors launching from the Southampton Water Activities Centre and  competing on a course laid just off the boat show marina.

Elsewhere across the globe, 14 clubs have signed up to compete in Spain including the ISAF Sailing World Championships in Santander, as have 19 Italian clubs, 39 clubs across the USA, 23 Australian clubs, 20 South African clubs, nine from the Netherlands, eight across Ireland, nine in Canada, six in Sweden, five in Argentina, Germand and China and four in New Zealand.

See full article at Practical Boat Owner – click here



Categories: Racing

Pratical Boat Owner: Stormy winter weather and innovative technology will be embraced by the 2015 London Boat Show, as part of an overhaul of the event. ‘We want people to be saying “You’ve got to go in there, it’s mad.”‘


More than 100 exhibitors packed into a conference room at the Southampton Boat Show to hear about the plans for Britain’s next big boat show. It was revealed that the National Boat Shows board had called upon the help of students from Central Saint Martin’s College, University of the Arts London, to revamp and revive the flagging boat show.

And NBS will be ‘quadrupling’ the investment of features it had last year. Organisers said while the London Boat Show continues to be profitable and attract 90,000 to 100,000 people, despite footfall dropping year on year, it needed a ‘kick start’ to change public perception.

The profit of the show helps to subsidize subscription to the British Marine Federation (BMF), the trade association for the leisure, superyacht and small commercial marine industry.Peter Gordon, chairman of National Boat Shows, a subsidiary of the BMF, said: “The perception of the show needed to change.‘We need to give the London Boat Show an identity and emotionally energise the event.'”. He added: “It needs to be more of a day out. It had stopped being a day out.”

Bringing the outdoors indoors
Mr Gordon said unlike the PSP Southampton Boat Show, the London Boat Show did not have the attraction of being outdoors with a large marina area to delight the senses, with fresh air smells, flapping halyard noises and changing temperatures.

This year’s Southampton Boat Show has also been revamped and made more family friendly and festival-like this year, with great success. St Martin’s MA Narrative Enviroments course students looked at the London Boat Show with a fresh eye.

They found that the event had been marketed quite literally, visitors knew exactly what to expect and after the initial arrival, became bored. The students researched the target audience and came up with Pioneers, Adventurers and Innovators to sum up all those who take to the sea.

A common thread was how weather affects all seafarers and is a very emotionally charged topic, which excites all different sorts of senses. Mr Gordon said any indoor event struggles without this natural atmosphere. But that thanks to the art students’ advice, this year’s London Boat Show will have specific enticing areas within the large amount of exhibition space at the 100-acre ExCeL centre.

Instead of multiple entrances to the exhibition, there will be one main show entrance in the middle of the halls, with audio, large screen visuals and temperature changes. Mr Gordon said: ‘We want people to be saying “You’ve got to go in there, it’s mad.”‘

Marine technology
Super hydrophobic coating, which is already being used successfully in the car industry, virtual reality navigation, environmentally-friendly innovations from Ben Ainslie Racing team, the new hydrofoil technology of the Whisper craft from the Southampton Solent University – showcased at this week’s boat show – will all form part of the innovative technology theme.

Exhibitors are being encouraged to come up with new ideas to show off innovations on their stands, be it marine products, waterproof clothing, gadgets or boats and organisers have pledged to help make these ideas a reality.

What else?
Due to popular demand the Public Preview Day will be returning on Friday 9 January. The 10-day show will run from 10am to 6pm daily, from 9-18 January, with late night opening on the Thursday until 8pm.£10 tickets are being offered at the Southampton Boat Show, exhibitors are encouraged to spread the word and include the event logo on their websites. Visitors are invited to take part in a quiz to see if they are Pioneers, Adventurers and Innovators. Mr Gordon said: ‘70% of space is already contracted for the London Boat Show, we’re ahead of last year.’ Now the challenge is to entice visitors back.



Categories: Boat Show

Yachting World: More than 20,000 people flocked to view the classic boats moored in central London over the weekend. An average of 1,000 visitors an hour poured into the former wine and ivory docks to see the boats moored there.


The St Katharine Docks Classic Boat Festival 2014 broke all previous records with attendance and boat numbers. More than 45 historic and classic vessels were crammed into the ancient dock, two of them, the motor-vessel Havengore, which carried wartime Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s coffin to Westminster in 1965, and Pioneer the magnificently restored East Coast Skillinger, were forced to remain moored in the lock, as the dock itself was full to bursting.

The festival included several of the Dunkirk Little Ships that took part in ‘Operation Dynamo’ in 1940, including the recently restored gaff-rigged cockle boat Endeavour from Leigh-on-Sea, and a sample of the boats that participated in the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant in June 2012. Even Gloriana – the Queen’s Row Barge was on special display.

First-time participants this year included an Essex Smack built in the 1860s, a yacht built for sailor Humphrey Barton, an Oyster Smack, a Danish sailing trawler, and a Fairey Huntsman 28.

Yachting Monthly was invited to present the prizes for the best-dressed vessels. Cruising editor Dick Durham sailed his own boat there – Wendy May a 1936-built 26ft gaffer designed by Maurice Griffiths – to judge the winners and the prize-giving was held aboard one of the historic craft – Cambria, the last vessel to trade under sail alone, which aptly enough Dick was mate aboard in 1970 when she discharged her last freight.

The winners were 1st: Sunbeam, a fully restored Colchester smack, whose skipper/owners, Nigel Butt, Tim Bradshaw and Tony Arnaudy were flying more match-winning pennants than any other craft. To them went a plump hamper donated by Tom’s Restaurant and Deli. Second came the beautiful Creag Dubh, whose light display put Southend Pier in the shade. Her skipper, Ian Ruffles, won a year’s subscription to Yachting Monthly.

This annual free event forms part of London’s ‘Totally Thames’ Festival and welcomed the return of many vessels from last year’s Festival as well as over a dozen new participants bringing an esoteric collection of boats.

With a large display of vessels being featured, this year’s popular event had expanded into the west marina for the first time, and included the sailing research vessel Song of the Whale. The west marina was also home to the UP Projects’ ‘Floating Cinema’ barge, showcasing arts.

With vessel information boards positioned around the central marina, visitors were able to learn about the background and stories surrounding the vessels.

Dockside activity included sea shanty singers and the National Youth Jazz Orchestra.




Categories: Velos Insurance News

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