Arwen's meanderings

Hi everyone and welcome to my dinghy cruising blog about my John Welsford designed 'navigator' named Arwen. Built over three years, Arwen was launched in August 2007. She is a standing lug yawl 14' 6" in length. This blog records our dinghy cruising voyages together around the coastal waters of SW England.
Arwen has an associated YouTube channel so visit to find our most recent cruises and click subscribe.
On this blog you will find posts about dinghy cruising locations, accounts of our voyages, maintenance tips and 'How to's' ranging from rigging standing lug sails and building galley boxes to using 'anchor buddies' and creating 'pilotage notes'. I hope you find something that inspires you to get out on the water in your boat. Drop us a comment and happy sailing.
Steve and Arwen

Monday 17 July 2017

And finally retirement arrives

Well I taught my last lesson on Thursday.
And OFSTED arrived for those last two days as well so both my retirement do's got cancelled.

Well it was inevitable! I was responsible for cursing the school and thus us getting the phone call mid morning Tuesday. I relaxed and threw away all my assessment folders, assessment data intervention plans, last of the teaching folders and my mark books 8.15am that morning in the school's dumpster bins!

It was bound to tempt fate too much! Ce sera sera.

I worked an average 55 hr week for 34 years - some 73,000 hours. 20,000 hours were unpaid overtime - it comes with the territory. It was a privilege and immense honour to work across such great schools and with so many fantastic students and teachers.

And now there is one week left doing sailing, SUP, kayaking and gorge walking activities at our local water sports centre with a great group of teenagers. Thursday is my last day and then it is over. I have no plans other than to sail a bit, redecorate the house and clear garages and basements; then whatever 'her-indoors' has on her list!!!!! So that will be 2017 over!

I will be building some wannigan bins for Arwen's front cockpit; plus a galley box for stove and utensils; and a provisions box for....well food provisions and water. Watch this space for further details.  Hope to be out on the water in Arwen next week with a few days camp aboard

Monday 10 July 2017

flying on Sheepstor - flight four

getting to grips with it slowly!

I am so lucky to live in such a stunning area.

Tuesday 4 July 2017

navigator for sale here in the UK

If you like the design, and I hope you do, here is your opportunity to buy one in the UK.
A lovely looking example, built just after Arwen I think

over on ebay at

I hope the gentleman is able to sell her easily and that 'Cariad' goes to another good home. 'Cariad' is welsh....a term of endearment!

Sunday 2 July 2017

Dinghy cruising: cruising equipment - What do you carry in your boat?

I know........there is bound to be something I've missed off.  Charts, navigation equipment, it is all there somewhere!