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The scheme under the chairmanship of Bob Atkins, with Penny Atkins (Manager) continued to progress steadily, with the support of the committee. From having become a group in 1966, within the Colchester District, it was in 2000 that the then County Commissioner, Barry Cousins, persuaded Offshore Sailing to take on district status. So it was that Peter Camper was appointed District Commissioner of Scouts Offshore.

Then some four years later in 2004 the decision was taken to change the District’s title from Scouts Offshore to Adventures Offshore. To do this the approval of the County, the Scout Association and the Charity Commissioners had to be sought. Whilst no snags were encountered the administration took a little time – with approval being agreed.

In 2005 Penny took a decision to leave the scheme – electing to take a job in the City, working with a contact she new well. It was about this time, also, that Alistair also felt it was necessary to resign his roll – as his eyesight was causing him problems. So it was that Bob took on the roll of RYA Principal too.

In the summer of 2005, after some canvassing, Barry Unger took on the role of Office Manager. He was joined by his wife, Joyce, who took on the roll of Office Administrator. Office support staff came and went – due to illness and family problems. This was of some concern. However, in the summer of 2006, with an ‘Islander’ (Mike Davis) joining the staff things seemed to get back on an even keel.

In the autumn of 2006, and ‘out of the blue’, sadly Bob Atkins passed away after a short illness. His funeral took place in Bexhill-on-Sea (East Sussex) in the autumn of 2006.

Following that, and with no Chairman, Peter Camper (D.C.) found himself at the helm. It was decided that the time had come when it was necessary to take stock of the overall situation. The minutes of the meetings, at that time, will record that it was thought imperative that we required a ‘distinctive’ Chairman to head up an Executive Committee. So a search was initiated. The main function of that committee would be to generate funds and have overall surveillance of Adventures Offshore. The present committee’s task would be simply to continue in the roll of managing the day-to-day running of the Scheme.

Mark Leggett was elected chairman at the start of the 2007 season, having long served on the committee of Adventures Offshore and as a skipper.

By John Meggitt

Chapter 10: The sequel