Dance and Dinner Tickets on Sale !

Greeting Sailors and non-Sailors!

We are happy to invite you to reserve your tickets below for SGSC Dance and Dinner Party. We are looking forward seeing you all.

Delicious 3 course dinner and cash bar.
Highland dancing with the Craigievar Scottish Dance Band.
Raffle later in the evening.

Dress code:
Black Tie/ Scottish Dress. Footwear – come prepared for lively dancing!
Royal Mid-Surrey Golf Club | Old Deer Park, Twickenham Road, Richmond, Surrey, TW9 2SB | T: 020 8940 1894
Saturday, March 03, 2018, Start time is 7.30pm.
Please let Marian know immediately if there are any dietary requirements.

Dinner and Dance Ticket Request Form
Strand on the Green Sailing Club invites you, your family and your friends to Dinner and Dance party on Saturday, March 03, 2018 Please reserve your tickets here.
How many tickets would you like to purchase?
In case we need to reach you.
Please provide the phone number we can reach you to take payment.
Please let us know if you have any dietary requirements.

Last Race, 5 November 2017

Last Race of the season, 5 November  2017

It was a bright and breezy afternoon with a full F3, plus added gust, blowing down the A-course from Kew Bridge.  A magnificent 9 boats took to the water, but even before the start three of them came to the conclusion that an immersion was highly likely and returned to the ramp – all Enterprises: the Browns, Rob Collingwood, and Chris and Laura Greenwood.  The others were made of sterner stuff.

Dave and Sheila Berger, rare visitors to our waters, sailing James Armitage’s Enterprise, led almost from the start.  He was closely followed by Nick Floyer at the start of the second lap (14 seconds behind) with Alex Pape and Ian Nethersell also less than a minute behind.   Alas, that was it for Nick.  He was overpowered on the run downstream, capsized, and despite valiant attempts to right his Lightning, it refused to behave.  After several attempts he had to concede and retire from the race – wet and cold.

So that left five contenders, and the Bergers kept ahead, but not by much at first.  At lap two all four were within two minutes of each other.  At three laps Alex and the Bergers were a mere 20 seconds apart with Lev and Ian about three minutes behind them.  Alex was still number two on the next lap with Ian just ahead of Lev, but by the next lap both had overtaken Alex.  The Bergers were drawing further ahead by this stage and went on to lap all the others.  They completed seven hectic laps in the allotted hour, three minutes ahead of Ian’s six laps with Alex and then Lev crossing the line after a further two and three minutes.  Sam Shemtob, with two crew in his Wayfarer and two reefs in his main fought for three laps and the fifth place but was forced to take assistance from the safety boat and retired.

So ended a very exciting race, as well as the 2017 sailing season.  The handicap system gave the race to the Bergers, followed by Lev, then Alex, and finally Ian.  Many thanks to Enoch Rodriguez for supervising the event, and to David Jones and Steve Newell for manning the safety boat.

As usual the race was followed by Beer and Bangers.  The beer was brewed by Steve, Mary Short slaved over the barbeque, soup and cake were provided by Margaret Berger, and other food was provided by several willing members.  It was especially good to see three of our most senior members at the feast: Kurt and Margaret Berger and Paul Williamson.

Race Report, 29 October 2017

Race Report, 29 October 2017

With the switch to GMT we knew that a late afternoon D-course would be a race against the gathering dusk and a gamble with the wind and tide.  But the omens were good: a bright mostly sunny day and a north wind of, officially, the top of F3, and a neapish tide.

Three boats were prepared to risk the trip to Hammersmith and back – Lev Kolobov and Tim Young in Gulls and Nick Floyer in his Lightning.  The start time coincided with the predicted low water at Chiswick Mall based on our experience that the flood tide takes at least an hour to kick in after the official low water, and that it takes at least 45 minutes to sail from Strand down to the turning point at Corinthians.

Nick had a good start and led the way on the run down to Chiswick Bridge, followed closely by Lev.  The curve in the river around Duke’s Meadows then sheltered them from the wind and progress was little faster than the tide until they emerged through Barnes Bridge.  They then had a brisk beat in close tacking towards Corney Reach with Tim following at an increasing distance in the rear.

By the time Nick and Lev reached the lifeboat station the ebb was almost slack and although they were storming along at great speed the safety boat (manned by Henry, Alex and David Jones) made the decision to shorten the course so that they could get back to Strand by sunset.  So a buoy was dropped short of Chiswick Eyot and the sailors were instructed to round it.  Lev was in the lead at that point and gybed around the mark to set off back on the run.  Nick was not so lucky.  He was caught by a gust as he gybed and capsized.  By the time he had disentangled the mainsheet, swum round to the centre board, heaved the boat upright, struggled aboard, regained control and gingerly turned downwind, Lev was a dot on the horizon and Tim had rounded the buoy and was on his way home.  The Lightning is a well-mannered boat and comes up with hardly any water aboard, but that still left a wet and cold Nick facing a long sail back.  He soon overtook Tim on the run up to Barnes Bridge and caught up with Lev in the doldrums around Duke’s Meadow.  Once through Chiswick Bridge, as the sun set, he and Lev resumed a tacking battle back to the Railway Bridge, which Nick won by a minute.  Tim followed seven minutes later while there was still enough daylight to heave the boats up to the arch and recover the safety boat.

After the sums, the handicap points were won by Tim, and the Class and Polly points went to Lev.

Mary, as well as being OOD, provided nourishing flapjack to go with the steaming tea; much appreciated by all.

Next week is the Last Race  at 13:30 followed by Beer and Bangers.  All are welcome.

Race Report, 22 October 2017

Race Report, 22 October 2017

The Met Office wind forecast for Kew Gardens was for the top of F3 from the west with gusts of F6, following a very gusty day on Saturday thanks to Storm Brian.  This was enough to deter several helms from even getting their boats out, but Lev Kolobov was up for it and so was his son David who was to crew for James Armitage.  Following much deliberation and gazing Kew-wards from the ramp first James and then Lev rigged and launched.  James was assaulted by gusts from all sides in the lee of the island, suffered a fault with his goose-neck and headed back to the ramp to recover.  Lev, having been capsized while still on the trolley, got afloat and cautiously tested the conditions.  James by this time had decided that a dunking for him and David was almost inevitable in the turbulent conditions, called it a day, and the race was abandoned.  Lev decided to go for a circumnavigation of the island which he achieved with much flapping of sails and changes of course before also heading back to the ramp, with the safety boat in close attendance.

So high honours should be awarded to James, David and Lev for both brave intentions and prudent second thoughts.  Chris Jones, David Jones and Henry Brown manned the safety boat, fortunately not required in extremis, and Tim Wellburn, who made the necessary preparations for the race, provided the much-appreciated refreshments afterwards.

Next week’s race, after we revert to GMT, will be a D-course that should finish around sunset.  If it’s a clear day, and if there’s a favourable wind there should be no problem in getting back to Strand in the light.  But if it’s cloudy and windless the race may be cancelled.  You have been warned.

Henry Brown

Race Report, 15 October 2017

race 15 Oct

Race Report for 15 October 2017


The morning was overcast with a barely perceptible breeze from the south to south-west as five boats assembled on the muddy foreshore.  A B-course was scheduled but the consensus was to switch to an A because of the difficulty of beating with a feeble or non-existent wind against the flood tide.  And for the same reason everyone agreed on a short course starting outside Zoffany House.

The fleet started with a flourish, catching a zephyr that took most boats down to the willow, whereupon it (the wind and the fleet) got into a familiar state of confusion.  Rob Adams in his Laser was the first to make an attempt on the downstream buoy, positioned just upstream of the slip-dock which was occupied by a large boat.  Unfortunately for Rob the tide triumphed over the wind at just the wrong moment, causing him to touch the buoy and re-join the queue.  Ian Nethersell, in his Vibe, was next to make the attempt and continued successfully to round the upstream mark.  As he passed the start line he put in a polite request for a one-lap race.  His time for the first lap was 13 minutes.  He was followed at 15 minutes by Chris Greenwood’s Enterprise and then by Alex Pape’s Lugger and Rob at around 16 minutes.

The breeze gradually filled in as the race progressed giving a second lap of around 10 minutes for the leaders – they being Chris followed by Rob, Alex and Ian.  Tim, meanwhile was still stuck in the doldrums opposite the willow.  By the third lap Rob had gained the lead which he retained to the end leaving Chris and Alex to contest second place for the next few laps as Ian progressively slipped behind.

Rob finished his seventh lap just before the hour was up followed in ten seconds by Chris and another minute or so by Alex.  Ian finished at about the same time but a lap behind, and Tim brought up the rear, after 64 minutes, having completed 5 laps.

So Chris won in the Handicap series and the Big Boats, and Alex won on the Polly Prize and Little Boats.  David Jones wasn’t given much to do in the safety boat and Tim Wellburn, assisted by Henry Brown, supervised from Zoffany House.

The more perceptive of you may have noticed some anomalies in the total scores and numbers of races sailed as recorded in recent results sheets.  The Master of Sums apologises for any errors and is confident that the latest results show the correct numbers.

Race report, 8 October 2017

race 20


Race Report: Sunday 8 October 2017

The Autumn Equinox combined with the ‘Harvest Moon’ brings forth the largest tides. And with them, the greatest yearly loads of silt in the river which floods the foreshore and the footpath with vast swathes either of deep nutrient-rich soil – or sticky sludge.

Onto this treacle-coloured and slippery water sailed Rob, Lev, Alex, Chris, Ian, Nick and Tim.

Rob was in the lead by a minute at the end of the first round of an ‘A’ course, followed by Lev, then at one-second intervals by Alex, Chris and Ian – with Nick and Tim one-second apart at the rear.

On lap 2, Rob was still leading the pack. But out of nowhere Nick had burst into second place. He had overtaken Lev, now 3rd, followed by Alex, then Ian, Chris [now 6th], and Tim.

After lap 3 there was no change in the running order. Rob still first, Nick second, Lev 3rd, Alex 4th, Ian 5th, Chris 6th and Tim 7th.

But a change of the established order was soon to come. Rob was still far out ahead. But Lev and Ian were tied for second on lap 4. Alex was still 4th. And  Nick had dropped down to 5th, with Chris and Tim still 6th and 7th.

Lev who, though joint 2nd with Ian on the preceding lap, touched the upstream buoy on his 5th and final lap, and so did a 360 degree turn; thus dropping to 4th over the line; preceded by Alex [now up to 2nd] then Ian [3rd] followed by Chris [5th]. Nick came across the line 5th. Tim resolutely defended his last position to the bitter end; refusing even to use his gaily-whipped and spliced port and starboard beautiful new oars. Rob, though, was a full lap ahead of everyone, completing 6 in total.

Meanwhile, Sam very kindly brought out half pints of lager shandy for David Jones on the Safety Boat, and for the OOD.

Abridged from Andy Ross – full version below



12 October 2017

Race Report: Sunday 8 October 2107: ‘Harvest Moon’

The Autumn Equinox combined with the ‘Harvest Moon’ brings forth the largest tides. And with them, the greatest yearly loads of silt in the river which floods the foreshore and the footpath with vast swathes either of deep nutrient-rich soil – or sticky sludge.

Onto this treacle-coloured and slippery water sailed Rob, Lev, Alex, Chris, Ian, Nick and Tim: testing the hypothesis whether a swollen silty river slows boats down – or maybe speeds them up with a soft lubrication with solvents in delicate suspension? But how could they see the difference?

For several October evenings, the moonrise comes soon after sunset. With a low Moon seeming huge many people assume that this common effect is caused by our atmosphere magnifying the image, but the explanation is far simpler. When the Moon is high overhead, it is dwarfed by the vast hemisphere of the heavens. By contrast, when the Moon is low at the equinox, it is viewed in proximity to earthly objects, such as buildings and trees, whose size and shape provide scale. This results in an abundance of low and bright moonlight early in the evening, which was a traditional aid to farmers [and their children] harvesting their summer-grown crops. Hence, the tradition of Harvest Festival. And its hymns.

But where did the hymns originally come from?

Akhenaton, the ancient Egyptian pharaoh of the 18th Dynasty who ruled for 17 years and died perhaps in 1336 BC or 1334 BC, is noted for abandoning traditional Egyptian polytheism and introducing worship centered on the Aten, the Sun, giving the solar deity a status far above a plethora of mere gods. He is regarded as the world’s first environmental science political philosopher King.

Akhenaton composed the Great Hymn to the Aten.

How manifold it is, what thou hast made!

They are hidden from the face (of man).

O sole god, like whom there is no other!

Thou didst create the world according to thy desire,

Whilst thou wert alone: All men, cattle, and wild beasts,

Whatever is on earth, going upon (its) feet,

And what is on high, flying with its wings.

Similar incantations by the SGSC fleet enabled Rob to be in the lead by a minute at the end of the first round of an ‘A’ course, followed by Lev, then at one-second intervals by Alex, Chris and Ian – with Nick and Tim one-second apart at the rear.

Akhenaton established a court of unprecedented luxury and magnificence that placed great emphasis on a solar-centric theology. And that’s before you consider his marriage to Nefertiti, known as the Mona Lisa of antiquity, the “Great Royal Wife”; a celebrity star in her own right – famous in turn for being the mother of Tutankhamen.


Akhenaton oversaw the construction of some of the most massive temple complexes in ancient Egypt. In these new temples, orientated towards the east, facing in the direction of the sunrise, Aten was worshipped in the open sunlight rather than in dark temple enclosures as had been the previous custom. As well as being considered to be the first monotheist and environmental scientist in history, it is thought the stylistic similarities between Akhenaton’s Great Hymn to the Aten and the Biblical Psalm 104 subsequently gave rise to Judaism and then Christianity and the concept of a single creator God as the ultimate force of Nature;  the astrophysicist of all time.

And by this time, on lap 2, Rob was still leading the pack. But out of nowhere, like a new bright star being formed, Nick had burst in second place! He had overtaken Lev, now 3rd, followed by Alex, then Ian, Chris [now 6th], and Tim.

As great rivers do, the fundamental reality of the annual flooding of the Nile was both feared and counted on as the deliverer of massive sediments brought down from Ethiopia. Crops thrived on the rich soil left behind as the waters receded. On Strand on the Green the floods leave behind loads of chemical nutrients that have been swept into the drainage canals and ditches from over-fertilised farmland, ploughed and tilled and sprayed up and down because it is far easier and more profitable to do that with CAP farm subsidies based purely on maximising output than running tractors and machinery sideways across fields; which would prevent run-off and conserve the soil, just as horses and ploughs did. What then gets swept into the river are the billions of corpses of the mesofauna [beetles, springtails, bugs and mites] that eat and break down organic debris in the soil, keep roots clean and enable nutrient uptake through beneficial mycorrhizal fungal networks that connect individual plants together and transfer water, carbon, nitrogen, and other nutrients and minerals. All that is killed off with pesticides and fungicides. And so we see the viridian green mats of algal growth on the foreshore, heaving with chemicals.

After lap 3 there was no change in the running order. Rob still first, Nick second, Lev 3rd, Alex 4th, Ian 5th, Chris 6th and Tim 7th.

But as for the question of who is the real true leader, others [such as Freud] have likened some aspects of Akhenaton’s relationship with the Aten to the relationship, in the Christian tradition, of Jesus Christ with God. Akhenaton did call himself the son of the sole God: ‘Thine only son that came forth from thy body’. He described himself as the son of the Sun-Disc and he acted as the chief mediator between god and creation. Freud said that the close psychic relationship between father and son is such that only the king truly knows the heart of “his father”, and in return his father listens to his son’s prayers on behalf of the nation. He is his father’s image on earth, and as Akhenaton is king on earth, his father is king in heaven. So as high priest, prophet, king and divine, he claimed the central position in the new religious system.

Because only he knew his father’s mind and will, Akhenaton alone could interpret that will and the environmental consequences for the entire nation with true teaching and leadership coming from him. But Akhenaton discovered that silver linings are often accompanied by dark clouds; and continuing catastrophic floods undermined his solar-centric scientific predictions. He was deposed and his teaching abandoned.

And a change of the established order here too was soon to come. Rob was still far out ahead as first. But Lev and Ian were tied absolutely equal for second on lap 4. Alex was still 4th. And for unseen and unknown reasons, except no doubt to him, Nick had dropped down to 5th, with Chris and Tim still 6th and 7th.

Also the colour of the water has always been seen as significant. Just as colourless water mysteriously turns blue [due to absorption of other wavelengths] so the ruffles and ripples of cats’ paws on the water darken and lighten the surface. And just such patterns were spotted by the two children of a Swedish couple – who confidently and accurately told the OOD that they were due to wind going upwards into the clouds!

This inconveniently confused Lev who, though joint 2nd with Ian on the preceding lap, and approaching the upstream buoy on his 5th and final lap, inconveniently touched it, and so nobly did a 360 degree turn; thus dropping to 4th over the line; preceded by Alex [now up to 2nd] then Ian [3rd] followed by Chris [5th]. Nick had by then lost all his cats’ paws and came across the line 5th. With Tim still ensuring that no-one should be left behind, resolutely defending his last position to the bitter end; refusing even to use his gaily-whipped and spliced port and starboard beautiful new oars. In the light of a Harvest Moon handicap, however, maybe paradoxically he was actually first? Rob, though, was a full lap ahead of everyone: completing 6 in total.

Meanwhile, as the Harvest Festival would not ever be so jolly without sufficient to drink, Sam very kindly brought out half pints of lager shandy for David Jones on the Safety Boat, and for the OOD.

So what would a modern day Akhenaton make of the river-borne rites and rituals of SGSC’s celebration of the Harvest Moon? Who really owns the water? And will the science of climate change lift all boats, or rejections of it swamp them – and us all?

Given the floods, hurricanes and wildfires plaguing the planet, and the intonations of Mark Carney, High Priest of the Financial Stability Board foreseeing massive climate change disruption to financial markets [a message only amplified by Donald Trump] we may consider this attempt to connect these ideas together in this post-COP21, pre-Brexit, Harvest Festival Hymn. And, as Akhenaton did; hope and pray it works.

As the trade winds blow over thirsty plains,
My soul will sing to the Lord,
And the storm clouds pour with reviving rains,
My heart gives thanks to Him.
Every season whispers the mystery,
The glorious rhythm of life,
Till the harvest comes from the boundless goodness
Of the Father’s hand.

When the crops have failed and the fields are bare,
My soul will cry to the Lord.
When the hungry know only death’s despair,
My heart will look to Him.
For the call goes out from the heart of God
To share with those in need;
As we feed the world we reflect the goodness
Of the Father’s hand.

©Stuart Townend





© Andy Ross

12 October 2017

Race Results – 01 October 2017

SGSC Race Results on Sunday 1 October 2017

Race Report by Terry Atkins OOD
On a bright sunny morning a C course beckoned and 5 boats took to the water. With no wind the safety boat assisted a couple under the bridge including Lev who was stuck by cafe rouge.
The squeaky green trumpet was used to count the 6 and 3 and the start however possibly due to the wind only the start was loud enough so there was a slight confusion from James who was nowhere near the start line when the race started proper at 10:47.
Needless to say he quickly sprinted through the field and led all of the way. In the meantime Sam and friends were tacking and gybing nicely and efficiently carving nicely as the wind picked up.
Alex quietly plied his trade in the middle of the pack and the OOD and safety boat went on ahead to drop the buoy up by the london apprentice.
Surprisingly there wasn’t any nasty gusts from kew and syon house to startle anyone and the peleton of 4 boats behind james were swopping places regularly all the way up to the buoy.
James with Tom on board rounded first with Ian on the side wishing he had come out for a sail on what was quite a mild day. Tim was sailing neatly in his pretty pink boat.
As the tide turned all boats took roughly half the time on the return leg as they did getting to the buoy in the first place and James came home to cross the line by the tower in just a smidgin over the hour mark.
The rest of the fleet came in soon after with all boats safely back through the line. A little assistance was required getting under the bridge but well done to all who came out to sail and or support.
Note by the Deputy Master of the Sums
Using personal handicaps for the Handicap Cup, Lev beat James into last place by 6 seconds; both had won too many races previously. Using Portsmouth Numbers, which depend only on the type of boat, for the Polly Prize, James beat Lev by 3 seconds to take first place.
Race Results

Race Results – 24 September 2017

SGSC Race Results on Sunday 24 September 2017
Race Report by Nick Floyer OOD
It was a warm and pleasant evening for this race over a triangular A course. Initially there was enough of a breeze to make tacking down to the windward mark by the City Barge, against the strong spring flood tide and SE wind, quite possible. Rob A and John in Lasers completed a lap in thirteen minutes, and Ian in his Vibe in eighteen. Only Lev’s friend Victor, in a borrowed Solo and without much small-boat experience, failed to get to windward at all, and had to be rescued several times from Kew Bridge by Dave in the safety boat. However the wind then became increasingly light, and it was the rounding of the leeward mark, the red channel buoy, and making it back to the line, that proved difficult for everyone. Lev in his Gull and Alex in his 14ft lugger were swept away to Kew Bridge and later retired. Next came Tim, who with considerable skill managed to tack up to the line and complete a lap in twenty-three minutes. Close behind were Rob and John coming round for the second time, and I raised the yellow flag in order to finish the race early, but they and Ian behind them failed to make it across to the finish line. Their various attempts to creep up along the wall did not succeed, and I eventually sent word that I would just use the first lap times for the results. After the best part of an hour the tide slackened, the wind perked up a bit, and the three boats were able to sailed home to the club. I timed them as they completed a nominal second lap, but the results below are based on the first-lap times of the four boats that made it round.
The so-called Burton rules for fishing a race are very sensible. However, this race shows that an OOD may need the option of ending a race on the basis of whatever laps have been completed, in the event that even the leading boat fails to finish a further lap within reasonable time.
Race Results

Race Results – 17 September 2017

Race Report by Steve Newell OOD

On a cool autumn day with only a light NW breeze, seven dinghies optimistically came to the start line outside no 1 Strand-on-the-Green and set off towards Chiswick Bridge.  The rescue boat with David Jones in command placed a buoy half way down Hartington Road on the Middlesex bank in the hope that a three lap race would be possible.  Unbelievably, a PLA patrol boat requested that the buoy should be moved mid race as other “shipping” was being inconvenienced but David assured the PLA that such an action would be unfair at such a late stage.  One rowing eight trying to return to the London University boat house attempted to break up our fleet with a manoeuvre reminiscent of Admiral Nelson at the Battle of the Nile but our sailors kept defiantly focused on reaching buoy once more.  The final obstacle observed, after about half an hour, was a gaggle of kayakers accompanied by a Canadian canoe propelled with a single paddle which seemed to be in charge.  They almost drove John Bull (laser), who by this stage had opened up a useful lead onto the buoy placed opposite 4/5 Strand-on-the-Green but any embarrassment was skilfully avoided – or maybe the 270 degree turn executed was simply to avoid an involuntary jibe.  I realised that our leading boat was not flying a racing flag so a letter of complaint to the canoe club is probably not appropriate although I might have a word nevertheless.

As the minutes ticked by the sun appeared to shine a little stronger, the breeze freshened a little to provide a bit of exhilaration and our sailors were still racing keenly.  On the river (before the application of the handicapping factors) the laser’s lead was cut although never seriously threatened but the fortunes of the commodore in his ‘shanghai’ rigged craft improved dramatically.  He “gently touched” the second mark after being caught in a very congested melee and to set a good example performed a second rounding which left him in last place.  He then purposefully gave chase and as conditions improved over the next few minutes fought his way through the fleet to be second over the finish line at the end of the third and final lap.

It was remarkable that after an hour of racing the whole fleet crossed the finish line in a span of just seven minutes.  I was assisted with the time keeping by Horatio.  When racing is close it helps enormously to have another pair of eyes on the action.

Race Results