A force 7 prevents the fleet from leaving a Ramsgate for Oostende

Monday 14th May

Gone with the Wind

It was another early start this morning for the MBM team, the alarm aboard the control boat Calm Voyager went off at 0600 hrs. No need for the alarm as the wind had bounced the boat while ropes had snatched, resulting in a sleepless night. The wind hadn’t died as predicted and was still howling through the entrance. It was an easy decision to make and a quick online weather confirmed 30 knots of wind in the Channel; the fleet would not move again today. Chris and Claire volunteered to go out in the RIB out to the second waypoint to assess the sea conditions. They reported a gust of 28.4 knots; a Force 6-7 on the beaufort scale. With the wind in the south they described streaked foam crested waves, an average of 1.2 metres high. It was clear it would have made an extremely uncomfortable passage down towards Dover and beyond.

The Ramsgate lifeboat was called out to what appeared to be an engine failure. As the boat drifted nearer towards the shallows, and the lifeboat sped to its rescue, cruise participants observed from the sea wall in the rain. The small flybridge bayliner was towed in, the cause of the call-out or breakdown has not been confirmed.

And so another day in Ramsgate for participants; some ventured to Broadstairs or Deal, while others explored the town. Tonight the MBM team have arranged a cruise supper at the seafront restaurant The Royal. MBM would like to thank to the Royal for taking our reservation at such short notice.

Weather permitting the departure plan tomorrow is very much the same as today’s, albeit half an hour later due to tide. Today the MBM team drew up contingency plans for any further weather delays and these will be given out at the dinner briefing tonight.