In 2019 after seeing an advert for a boat for sale I made my first trip down to the Dee sailing club. After meeting Malcolm who was selling his boat ‘Clear Water’ and then meeting with Roy Sheriff and Mike Noonan, I decided to buy the boat and joined the club.

For the first few months I was quite happy going out just using the motor and getting used to the tides and channels in the Dee. I slowly started experimenting with the sails but only when the weather conditions were right. I met Richy Shakeshaft one day in the yard and asked him if he fancied joining me for a sail and between us over time we started to get the hang of it.

Things don’t always go to plan there’s a lot to learn and you should always ask for advice if your unsure of anything. I’ve been stuck in the mud while taking the wrong route back from my boat as the tide was coming in I honestly thought I wasn’t getting out.

I once went for a midnight sail and the engine failed and I had to anchor the boat at West Kirby and only just got back to the club in my dinghy. Things don’t always go to plan and you need to be prepared just in case.
Sailing is a fantastic hobby and becoming a member of the DSC has changed my life for the better. I have met so many knowledgeable people who have taught me so much , I have met so many nice people who have become my friends and I have had so many great adventures . Help and advice is always available if you ask.
We all just want to hoist the sails and head off for a lovely weekend away but it’s not always that easy. Listen to advice and take your time to get used to your boat. Crew on other peoples boats or ask others to come out with you. After 3 years I still see myself as a novice and am learning from others all the time.

Don’t rush , take your time , enjoy yourself and the rewards are well worth it.
Andy Rainford
‘Wild Magic’
Sailing Calendar 2024