We were blessed with good weather for the day, which was just as well considering the outside walking involved.

    This third event was to be a challenge due to the expected numbers with our star speaker being Chay Blyth and having held two other Talks with such a terrific response from our audiences we knew the seating capacity of the Exhibition Room (45) would not cope with a target audience of 60 persons.  In the end we sold 73 tickets and invited four guests realising, with the speakers, organisers and stewards, a total audience of 90 seated persons, double our previous number.   We were lucky to have secured the use of the Salisbury Museum lecture hall, able to accommodate up to 110 people seated.   It meant that after the welcome at Arundells we all marched along the West Walk and in through the main entrance to the Museum.

    First of the three speakers, Lawrence Boarer, spoke of his beloved boat yard, one of the oldest on the IoW and the types of craft they have produced since 1867.  His work on Morning Cloud 2 and Morning Cloud 3 plus a video described the rebuild of Morning Cloud 2 which had been renamed Opposition by its new owners.   This yard is known to all the great sailors in the yachting fraternity as well as Royalty. In 2014 they were visited by HRH Prince Philip and HRH Princess Anne having completed work in the past for Uffa Fox, who regularly sailed with the Duke of Edinburgh.

    Next the great man, Chay Blyth, told us of his exploits in the great waters of the world, how he and John Ridgeway had rowed across the North Atlantic in a 20ft open dory with many pouring scorn and laughter before, and when, they embarked.  In fact he explained that when asked, why and how it was done, he replied "because we're British".  He entertained everyone with his hilarious descriptions and stories making us realise how monumental exploits can be overcome with such determination and true grit.   How he became the first person to sail non-stop around the world, aboard the yacht British Steel, taking 292 days, and as a result was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE).  In 1984 he capsized off Cape Horn aboard the trimaran "Beefeater II"  whilst attempting the New York - San Francisco record attempt with Eric Blunn but was rescued by a passing fishing boat after 19 hours in the water.  Later in 1985 he was co-skipper with Richard Branson (a man who never takes anything seriously) on Virgin Atlantic Challenger l and Virgin Atlantic Challenger ll in 1986 before founding the Challenge Business to organise the 1992/1993 British Steel Challenge in 1989.   This event allowed novices to sail around the world in a professionally organised race.   The British Steel Challenge was followed by two successive BT Global Challenge races in 1996/7 and 2000/1.  However, a downturn in the sponsorship market meant that the 2004/2005 Global Challenge race set off without a title sponsor.
    This was a very interesting and at times a very humorous talk enjoyed by all.

    An enjoyable buffet lunch followed in the well known Medieval Hall which stands just a few paces away from the Lecture Hall.  With it's interesting historical architecture and quaint approach it made the day even more interesting.   This hall had been built originally as the Deanery for the Cathedral.

    The last speaker of the day was Timothy Jeffery, a sailing journalist and author of The Mumm Champagne Admiral's Cup with foreword by Edward Heath:  "Having competed in three Admiral's Cups and captained the British team twice, I can vouch that the series is second in international yacht racing only to the America's Cup.
    It has built up this position in less than 40 years whereas the battle for the America's Cup has continued for nearly a century and half.
    Long may the Cup remain foremost in British and international yacht racing"
    Sir Edward Heath 1994

    Tim spoke about the aspects not only of the Admiral's Cup but also of the America's Cup as often the well known international skippers had taken part in both.  Alas due to influence of sponsorship and other major races around the globe the Admiral's Cup is no longer competed for and is kept at 20 St. James's Place, London the home of the Royal Ocean Racing Club.  We were very lucky to have the trophy on display at Arundells for the last three weeks and so we would thank the RORC for the privilege of them loaning it as part of the Edward Heath Centenary Celebrations.

    To wind up the day all attendees were invited back to Arundells for a tour of the house and gardens.

    Bob Hayes, Vice Chairman
    The Friends of Arundells


                                   From left to Right: Giles Ball,  Bob Hayes,  Pat Boarer,  Lauri Boarer,  Chay Blyth,  Tim Jeffery


                                                              Photo by James Bremridge

    October 2016


    Arundells, the Salisbury home of former Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath, is delighted to announce that the Royal Ocean Racing Club has generously agreed, as part of the Edward Heath Centenary celebrations, to loan the iconic Admiral's Cup trophy to the house.

    It will join unique permanent display of marine models and yachting memorabilia at Arundells from Saturday 22nd October until the end of the visitor season  on 9th November.

    The trophy will take centre stage on 10th November, when Arundells will host the third in its series of Morning Cloud Talks for sailing enthusiasts.   The talks will be delivered by a distinguished line-up of speakers:  Sir Chay Blyth, who was the first person to sail single-handed westwards around the world;  Lawrence Boarer, Managing Director of the Clare Lallow boatyard;  and author Tim Jeffery.   Tim will be speaking about the history of the Admiral's Cup.  The event will be sponsored by Admiral Yacht Insurance.

    Lord Hunt of Wirral, Chairman of the Sir Edward Heath Charitable Foundation, said "We are very grateful to the Royal Ocean Racing Club for the loan of the Admiral's Cup which is a remarkable piece of yachting history.

    Edward Heath led the British team to victory in 1971 and we are delighted to be able to display the Cup to visitors to the house, alongside our fascinating array of British sailing memorabilia.   It will also be a key feature of the third Morning Cloud Talks on 10th November.  I am very pleased to welcome Admiral Yacht Insurance as our sailing events' sponsor for 2016-2018".

    Michael Boyd, Commodore of the Royal Ocean Racing Club said "A highlight of Edward Heath's sailing carer was his role as Captain of the winning British Admiral's Cup team in 1971.  He was also a distinguished member of the Royal Ocean Racing Club and we are delighted to have the Admiral's Cup on view in Arundells whilst celebrating Edward Heath's centenary".

    Between 1957 and 1999 the Admiral's Cup was known as the unofficial world championship of offshore racing.   It was generally held every other year and pitted national teams of three boats against each other.   The notorious Fastnet Race formed the last of five races which made up the Admiral's Cup roster.

    In 1971, when Prime Minister, Edward Heath aboard his yacht Morning Cloud II captained the British team to victory in the Cup, wresting the trophy back from the defending champions, the USA and beating sixteen other national teams.

    Edward Heath became the only serving British Prime Minister to win a major international sporting trophy for this country.  The winning British team consisted of Morning Cloud, Prospect of Whitby and Cervasntes IV

    We are pleased to announce that we have secured a sponsor for the lunch and
    refreshments at the Morning Cloud Talks on 10th November 2016.
    The Salisbury based Admiral Yacht Insurance have kindly agreed to become
    associated with this regular and well attended event and so we look forward to
    a good working relationship with them in the future.