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> History

In 1972 we were given a donation of £3000 by Ralph Dreschfield, a well-known East Coast sailor towards a more modern vessel. As a result in October 1972 I went out to Malaga on the Spanish Mediterranean coast and purchased Ramrod – a 45ft 18-ton Class 1 one ocean racing boat – for £10,000, although at the time we only had £3000 to spend.

I told them that they would get the balance, subject to survey back in the UK, so we brought it back to West Mersea – to replace the Sallie.

A grant of £5,000 was obtained again from Essex Education Authorities, and with the sale of Sallie, the payment for this vessel was cleared.

It also went to replacing our ageing dory with a brand new 18-foot Cheverton work launch. Ramrod increased our cruising range enormously, and also caused a big increase in the number of trainees wanting a cruise.

The following year we took Ramrod up into the Baltic for a month’s cruise, changing crews several times. This would have been the first time that we had carried out extended cruises so far from home.

In this year we also started a Dinghy section – with the purchase of 2 GP 14’s and 2 Mirror dinghies, plus a dory for a safety boat. Also a 20ft day-boat became the schemes responsibility with the help of instructors from local Sea Scout Groups.

Chapter 2: Ramrod

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