News & update

All at sea for charity

09 Aug 2017
Peter sailing charity
63-year-old, Peter, is preparing to brave the extreme weather of the Southern Ocean and the North Pacific to raise money for charity.

He’s taking an extended break from his job and has spent nearly £20,000 to take part in intensive sail training and two legs of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race.

Twelve yachts leave Liverpool on 20 August with their crews hoping to raise £400,000 for children’s charity Unicef. More than 600 sailors are taking part – either as "round the worlders” or "leggers”.

Peter, who works in Exeter, is a "legger” – taking part in 2 individual legs – and sets sail next March.

He says: "I’m going from Qingdao in North China across the North Pacific to Seattle in leg six of the Race, then joining leg seven from Seattle to New York through the Panama Canal – a total of around 11,100 nautical miles.

"I have some trepidation about tackling the North Pacific and the Southern Ocean. Sailing in those parts of the world is going to be challenging and tough. There will be snow, ice, big seas and 22 people having to sharing a 70 foot boat for weeks on end with no real personal space. There are no luxuries, like showers. It’s all quite basic.

"But it’s the realisation of a dream of a lifetime for me. I’ve always wanted to sail an ocean and this will undoubtedly be an amazing experience.”

Peter’s always had a love of the water. He’s gone from surfing to sailing and was a member of the BT Offshore Sailing Club in the Solent in the late 90's where he gained his first sailing qualifications.

He works at Openreach offices in Commercial Road, Exeter, controlling teams of Openreach engineers working across the South West on heavy cabling.

With his family now grown up, it’s his chance to realise his dreams.

"I’ll be 64 when I start the race,” he says. "It’s given me a bit of a spur. A lot of people my age start to wind down. I’ve had to get fit to go on this trip and I’m raising my game every week.”