Bob Bradfield of Antares Charts opened the session talking through some of the practical aspects of how he set out to produce detailed surveys of anchorages around Scotland. Working from his Nimbus 37 motorboat, Pegasus, Bob carried out hundreds of detailed surveys of small-boat anchorages which he then creates unique high level electronic charts.
The informative and entertaining talk on how the charts were developed from his experiences heading to more remote anchorages from Patagonia to the artic. Bob said: "It's lovely to see the response from the audience who clearly already using my charts to relax in some of the gorgeous anchorages the West Coast of Scotland has to offer. I spend the summer doing the hydrographic survey work, which I love, whereas the winter is used for the cartography, which I am less fond of. I am constantly adding new anchorages after receiving requests from users of my charts and have spent a few weeks on the Clyde this year and will be updating those this year."
The practical demonstrations on safety equipment had some great teaching techniques that involved the whole audience, presented by Rod Smith from sportscotland National Centre Cumbrae. From the time it takes to deploy the safety equipment, both personal and for the boat to the practical experience gained by inflating life rafts or setting off flares.
"It is fun getting the group involved and using some of the equipment that is normally only used in an emergency. Sometimes things don't work, while the number of items of safety equipment available can be very confusing in choosing which is best for your cruising."
Lynda Towers, followed with some great insights on how Brexit may affect recreational boating. As a lawyer involved in European and Maritime Law in connection with the Department of Transport she joined the Planning and Environmental Committee as a volunteer, then moved onto RYA Council and the Cruising and General Purposes Committee advising on legal issues at a UK level.
She commented "The subject may feel like the depressing bit in the middle of an exciting sandwich of sailing topics, however there some really important issues for recreational boating including customs and immigration; qualifications; environmental legislation; registration of boats and particularly in Scotland the devolved nature of certain legislation."
Keynote speaker Jock Wishart has undertaken many maritime expeditions which push the boundaries of the exploration. He touched on the key motivations and challenges of setting out, offering some inspiration for all seeking adventure afloat, from his own hero Shackleton to the amazing people he has worked with.
Jock enthused, "It is great being at Scotland's Boat Show and actually catching up with some of the people, like Bill McKay, who have helped me during some of my crazy adventures. Of course having a great team around me has always helped and forming those teams has been central to my preparations for expeditions to the North Pole or rowing across the Atlantic or motoring around the world. It is all about passion and getting those around you to be passionate to get some great performances and to never give in on achieving your dreams. You have all got an adventure in you, it is all in your mind, take advantage of the wonderful place you live and take on life."
Please find out more about the representation the RYA provide through our Cruising and General Purposes Committee at the link below.