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competitor yacht in Fastnet race

Our Next Meeting

13th November 2017

Stuart Wood

Image of Stuart Wood

Stuart Wood is the Operations Director of the Daniel Adamson Preservation Society. He was a Marine Pilot with Liverpool Pilotage Services for over 40 years. He had responsibilities for safety matters and also acted as a consultant to a number of large maritime organisations including a year as the Chief Pilot for Jeddah in Saudi Arabia.

Stuart will tell the story of the Daniel Adamson, a remarkable survivor from the steam age and a most unusual vessel. A small but incredibly powerful canal tug, she was built to tow long strings of barges from inland towns to the great seaport of Liverpool. She was built at Cammell Laird shipyard in Birkenhead in 1903, and named the Ralph Brocklebank. During the First World War, she also had a short stint working for the Royal Navy as an unarmed patrol boat around the Liverpool coastal area.

The Ralph Brocklebank was bought by Manchester Ship Canal in 1922 and as part of her uses took visiting VIPs including King Fuad of Egypt, King Faisal of Iraq, King Amanullah of Afghanistan, and the Sultan of Zanzibar around Manchester’s famous inland docks.

In 1936 the Ralph Brocklebank was given a radical refit and her name changed to that of the ship canal’s founding father Daniel Adamson. The newly renovated Daniel Adamson boasted the clean bold lines, geometric patterns and block colours of the unapologetically modern Art Deco style.

The Daniel Adamson Story

Image of the Danial Adamson

In late 1984 the Daniel Adamson was withdrawn from service and moved to a museum but she soon fell victim to funding cuts and in early February 2004 she was earmarked for scrapping at Garston. The Daniel Adamson Preservation Society (DAPS) was formed to save her and bought the Daniel Adamson from owner MSCC for the princely sum of £1.

Many members and volunteers joined up to DAPS, bringing much needed skills, enthusiasm, and crucially, time. The commitment and fundraising drive paid off, and in February 2015 the Heritage Lottery Fund awarded £3.8m to restore the Daniel Adamson to full working order.

From a vandalised wreck days away from the breaker’s yard, the Daniel Adamson has sailed into the elite ranks of the National Historic Fleet, the maritime version of Grade I listed building status – alongside vessels of national significance such as the Cutty Sark, HMS Victory and SS Great Britain.

Text and Image Courtesy of the Daniel Adamson Preservation Society. Website

Outline program


13 November 2017
AGM – Stuart Wood on The Daniel Adamson story

11 December 2017
Mike Austen – The Liberdade - tales of Joshua Slocumb

08 January 2018
Comm. Gerry Thwaites R.N. - Life as Chief Engineer on Royal Yacht Britannia

12 February 2018
Peter Bruce – Heavy Weather Sailing

12 March 2018 – Alice Eves – French Polynesia and Brazil

10 April 2018
Technology Update (Charles Tollit) and The Life of Admiral Robert Fitzroy (Ian Simpson)

Our meetings are usually on the 2nd Monday of each month from October to April at Henley Golf Club RG9 4HG with the bar opening at 7:30pm ready for an 8.00pm start.

Visitors are always welcome for only £5 per meeting, and annual membership costs just £25 for individuals and £35 for families.

To get the most up to date information about our programme of events please Click Here, or phone our Commodore Trevor Morey on 01491 681319, or email him at Trevor.Morey(at)

Henley Offshore Group Rally

May 7th and 8th 2016

Island Harbour

stern view of yachts moored in Island Harbour Marina

Andante, Freya, Karvinen, Taiva and Vivace moored on B pontoon at Island Harbour.

The club's 2016 rally took place over the weekend of May 7th and 8th and was held at Island Harbour on the upper reaches of the River Medina at Cowes on the Isle of Wight. For more pictures from the weekend Click Here

If you would like to join our group (or renew your membership) please click here to download the Membership Form as a Word Document or here to download the Membership Form as a PDF file or here to download the Membership Form as an HTML Document.

Please print the form and complete the details, and either bring the form together with your remittance (cheques should be payable to the Henley Offshore Group) to one of our meetings, or send them to the Membership Secretary as shown on the form.

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Not many of our members can genuinely claim to have been involved in racing as dramatic as this, but we can all dream, so why not come along.