Wednesday, 3 April 2019

2019 Voyage around Britain

Kika  2019 Spring Voyage around Britain for St Kentigern Hospice.

On 13 May we shall leave Conwy, our home in North Wales, on a 9 week circumnavigation of Britain via the Caledonian canal.

Over the winter Kika has been laid up under the Harbour Master's Office in Conwy. A crowd of mates and crew have turned up to "help" : most of which constituted useful advice from the nearby Liverpool Arms. We have, however, made the boat ready for sea, including a new foresail supplied by Steve Horrocks from the Boatshed Sailmakers, who has kindly agreed to sponsor the trip. The Aries Self Steering Windvane was all seized up . We took it off and, with the help of Gareth Lloyd our local garage owner and his bench press, dismantled it and had a new stainless steel rudder tube fabricated. The old one was badly corroded and it is now impossible to obtain new parts for the ancient Aries, which is still the toughest, most over engineered, wind vane available and kept going in quite severe storms on our trip down to New Zealand. It is now back on the boat and looks promising.

On 2 April the team from the Harbour Master's Office and Buckley's crane company lowered Kika into the river Conwy. It was snowing at home and the newborn lambs were shivering. To my relief the engine started . Nigel Bailey and I motored down to pick up our swinging mooring on the river.

The crew are now signed up for different legs of the voyage . We think it will be a fascinating trip. Britain's coastline has a stunning variety of scenery; the wildlife is rich and varied and the places we will visit will be steeped in maritime and social history. We hope the voyage will raise some much needed funds for  St Kentigern Hospice which you can support on the following "just giving" link. . Any help would be enormously appreciated.

Kika on her winter berth under the castle

11 tons arrive in the water