The Old Man will be delighted to hear from you – with comments or questions or advice on how you can do it too… if that is what you would like.

Just leave a comment or if you prefer, you can email

Also, you might like to subscribe to the oldmansailing PolarSteps  account. While it takes time to create a blog post, a photo can be shared in a matter of moments – so they tend to get out there first. See them at Also this will show you where I’ve got to (and a track of how I got there.)

There’s a YouTube channel as well:

Movements in the early years were as follows:

2017: June: Bought Samsara in Conwy, North Wales. Launched in September and sailed south, up the English Channel to Woodbridge.

2018: Up the North Sea, over the top of the Orkneys to the Hebrides, then down to the Azores and back to the Essex backwaters.

2019: Jester Challenge (North Wales to Baltimore in Ireland) West coast of Ireland, Scillies, Channel Islands.

2020: Lockdown cruise from Essex – over the top of the Shetands, down to the Azores (but not stopping) back to Falmouth. Anchored in St Helen’s Pool, Scillies, for a month to write Old Man Sailing. Then to northern Spain (and back when travel restrictions for the family to join me in Portugal were not lifted). Up the Irish Sea, Hebrides, Orkneys and back to Essex.

2021: Up the east coast to the Shetlands, NW Scotland, outside Ireland to Falmouth – up to Portsmouth to film MyClassicBoat video, back to Falmouth, then straight to the Canaries (to avoid the Orcas off the Spanish and Portuguese coasts). On to the Gambia and 120 miles up the river. Christmas at Lamin Lodge.

2022: The Cape Verde islands, across the Atlantic to Grenada, visiting the Grenadines, Martinique, St Martin and the British Virgin Islands, back to Falmouth, Channel Islands, St Malo and then up to Conwy in North Wales for a refit.

2023: From North Wales to Amsterdam via the English Channel to get the Aries self-steering serviced. Then to Plymouth for the Jester Challenge to Baltimore again. Thence to Les Sables d’Olonne to promote the French edition of Old Man Sailing (Le vieil homme hisse la voile). Up to Liverpool for children’s graduations. Back down to the Isle of Wight to get the new tank and water maker fitted (but they’d sold my water maker to someone else). So, on to Falmouth for the Ocean Cruising Club’s West Country meet, back to the Solent for the water maker (finally!), on to the Canaries, a quick stop at the Cape Verdes and then Grenada.

From that point on, progress is covered by PolarSteps:

32 Responses to Contact

  • Seeing the video on youtube through ybw forums excellent well done ,tried to buy your book through amazon uk but it is out of print any idea of when it would be available againl Thanks

  • Hello John,

    Bought OLD MAN SAILING. Read it and loved it. I was there with you on the entire voyage. Reminded me somewhat of the books written by the late Tristan Jones. His were, we now know, mostly fiction but like yours, real or not, great reading none the less.

    75 year old life long costal sailor here. Always meant to but somehow never did go beyond coastal.

    Long ago at anchor in Newport Rhode Island I met a sailor who was about 75 then, I was perhaps 40. We had a few drinks and talked about dreams, sailing, sailing dreams and family.

    Before he got back in his dinghy and headed back to his pretty cutter he reached into his wallet, took out a ragged slip of paper and handed it to me. He said, “I have carried this around for years. It’s your turn now.

    As he rowed away I read:

    A small boy heard the ocean roar
    “There are secrets on my distant shore
    But beware my child the ship’s bell’s wail
    Wait not too long to start the sail.”

    So quickly come and go the years
    And a young adult stands abeach with fears
    “Come on, come on the ocean cussed
    time passes on, oh sail you must.”

    Now it’s business in middle age prime
    And maybe tomorrow there will be time
    Now is too soon — it’s raining today
    Gone all gone — years are eaten away

    An old man looks out still feeling the lure
    Yet he’ll suffer the pain than go for the cure
    The hair is white, the steps with care

    So all too soon the secrets are buried
    Along with him and regrets he carried
    And it’s not for the loss of secrets he cried
    But rather because he’d never tried.

    Safe journeys my friend!

    Roger Lemoine
    Beaufort South Carolina USA

  • Hi John i am a 62 year old male living in uk i would very interested in trying this food supplement please send me details when you have time Thanks Ian

  • Hi John, I didn’t immediately read the first episodes of your blog but saved them and have now collated them to read together, which I have enjoyed doing.
    I am also old, too old to contemplate sailing but it’s good to do so by proxy, it brings back a lot of memories. I didn’t have experience when I took off in my boat. I had been in the RAF for twelve years, much of it on SAR Helicopters, seeing with growing envy the activities of the yachting crowd along the south coast. I was due to leave the service at age 30, with no civilian qualification and I did not relish the prospect of working . Reading ‘Sheila in the Wind’ by Adrian Hayter, who bought a boat on discharge from the Army to sail singlehanded to NZ inspired the idea to do something similar and I planned a round -the- world trip taking my wife and children, much inspired by the story of David Lewis and family who had done the voyage in the catamaran Rehu Moanna . We bought a new, fibreglass catamaran, a 30ft Oceanic, designed and built by Bill O’Brien. It took three years to get to NZ, where we decided to stay, as immigrants, but with still no skills for a job, I encountered, through the need for treatment myself, the world of Chiropractic. An application to the new College in Bournemouth was accepted, all I had to do was get there. I did it by sailing solo, non stop, back to our start point Chichester, the family following by air once I had arrived safely in December 1973. After four years training I was qualified and set up practice on the Isle of Wight. At first there was no time for sailing but eventually I bought another catamaran, an Iroquois, which gave me some outlet for ten years. Tiring of simply ferrying friends and family around the Solent or going solo I sold the boat and took up Paragliding at the age of 54, which gave a lot of enjoyment in a variety of places, interspersed with the fun, exercise and companionship of Vintage Bicycles in national and International events. Retirement from Practice came at age 65, though I have kept my hand in, enjoying a new field, occassionally helping a friend treating horses, mostly in Ireland. Getting involved in Family History encouraged me live up to my responsibilities and leave a record of our sailing days.The book I had so labouriously typed out during my solo voyage was turned down by several publishers because it conflicted with several more exciting stories then being presented, that of the Baileys and 117days Adrift, as well as the Lewis books so all my written material went into a drawer and stayed there until I retired. I have written our story in several volumes, self published on Amazon as e-books, and you can find them there under my name or that of the boat , ‘Motley One’. I finally finished the saga this summer with Motley One in the Pacific.
    I really wish I had done ,as you did, and written a book. I have bought a copy of yours and am looking forward to reading it, I hope you have success in selling it. I have written far more than I intended, all about myself, but then I have your story already, though I am sure you have much more to tell. In my sailing days there was no satellite navigation, no easy communication, so I wrote, not a blog, because the word had not been invented, but a daily journal, just like the captains of the old sailing ships and having assembled a fair list of correspondents I thought might be interested, I sent each of them a copy, daily, of what I had written forty years before as I ploughed my lonely furrow.. I stirred some interest as I got emails asking if I had got back OK. The early volumes are almost purely for family history and do not attract buyers. My wife and I are still together after 61 years and the three wonderful daughters still very much part of our lives. The youngest who was just three months old when we sailed from Chichester in December 1968 is here near us, on the Isle of Wight, and drives a school bus.
    Oh, that’s enough to bore you with for now.
    Our very best wishes to you, and thank you for letting us into your life.
    Sally and Richard Hope

  • Heard your interview today which was lucky for me as I am not a JV fan and usually switch off. Glad I didn’t today! So pleased to have found your blog it is fascinating. Keep enjoying life

  • Hi John. Heard your wonderful interview on the Jeremy Vine show. Truly inspiring. That took me to a search for your blog, which lead to your YouTube channel. ‘Subscribed’ & first video I watched peaked my interest. Please could you forward the details of this, sounds remarkable, supplement. I’m on the River Medway, Kent UK. Long may you keep sailing. Best regards Geoff

  • Excellent article as a non sailor (no sea legs).I love the sea air,oceans and a book sounds a good idea to me.Well spoken on radio 2 really enjoyed listening

  • You didn’t muck it up! You were amazing on radio 2 today. Inspiring story. What a great adventurer you are. Good luck on your next voyage. I hope customs in Coventry quickly coughs up your piece of equipment!!!

  • I thoroughly enjoyed your radio interview John, thank you and congratulations on a fantastic trip. Keep your eyes open whilst you’re here with us in Falmouth and you may see an old friend; Largo is based locally.

    Like others, I’d be keen to hear more of your health supplement please.

    Fair winds.

  • Hi John fantastic to here today I was Luckly enough to get on the programme to comment with J Vine
    Am now log on to your blog to follow your travels keep safe and keep well

  • Hey John I heard your lovely story on Jeremy Vine’s show today. It was delightful and very inspiring. I felt a rare tinge of jealousy too! I wonder how many hits your blog has got today? I’m a truck driver and love to listen to the shipping forecast… I will think of you. All the best, safe travels

  • After listening to your interview on radio 2 I find myself envious of a beautiful dream fulfilled by your passion, my own admiration for a water adventure unfortunately has to stay as a dream at the moment but you never know, that’s what dreams are for 🙂 stay safe and enjoy. Regards

  • John, great interview on Jeremy Vine. Reminded me of my sailing days 20+ years ago ( but not so adventarous as you) Kielder Resevoir in a Hunter Europa, and latterly two or three times round the Greek Islands. Best of luck!

  • Hi John, i was listening to Jeremy Vine today and was totally amazed at what you had been doing in lock down, well done you, so inspirational, i was totally hocked to the Radio, i will follow you from now on if that’s Ok John.

    • Thank you for your kind words

      • Hi john hurd on on radio 2 today wow what a inspirational guy you are id love to do what you have done I’ve always had 40 cruisers and always wanted to learn how to sail after listening to you i think i may start keep it up john stay safe

    • Hi John, I loved hearing about your recent exploits on the Jeremy Vine show. I’ve done a little bit of sailing myself – enough to have a small understanding of the challenges involved. You’re an inspiration in these strange times!
      Very interested in the food supplements you refer to – would you please let me have the details.
      Stay safe!

  • Hi John, I have just listened to you on Jeremy Vine… Great adventure you are having! My husband is envious he has been an avid sailer since the age of 12. He is now 67! I thought you might like to know, that little bird you gave a sea burial to, was a swallow. British swallows spend their winter in South Africa – they travel through western France, across the Pyrenees, down eastern Spain into Morocco and across the Sahara.

    I would really love to know your mystery health supplement also, as I to suffer with osteoarthritis. I have it in both hands unfortunately. I am 58 and cannot believe how fast it is deteriorating.
    Take lots of care, you are in the best place. Enjoy your holiday with your family later on.
    Best Regards

  • Just listened to Jeremy Vine!! What a fantastic story! That means you’ve had more fun than most of the world who have had to stay at home! So nice to listen to someone who is doing what they love to do in the most difficult time the world has had to deal with since the last world war!!!
    Stay safe and healthy
    Keith Morgan
    A Driving Instructor
    Living in Devon

  • Wow. So many things going wrong. What happened to preparation?
    I think many people listening to the Vine show will think you selfish. On your own, leaving your wife to cope.
    At least you didn’t have to abandon this boat like the last one. So no one had to put themselves at risk to rescue you.

  • Outstanding interview on Radio 2. Well done and enjoy 🙂

  • Hello John … Just heard you on R2…Brilliant…If you feel like sailing round to Bosham in Chichester harbour I have a mooring for you !!! All the very best … Simon ..

  • You were great on the Jeremy Vine show John. A true inspiration! Lucky you had enough sardines!

  • Good afternoon, I ‘ve just been listening to you on Jeremy Vine. I love your spirit and think you are amazing! Best regards Heather in York

  • Sitting here homeworking & just heard your story on Jeremy Vine R2 show. Has brightened my day up hearing about your exploits. Will read the full blog later. Keep Sailing… Thank you.

  • Excellent segment on radio 2 today, I could listen to you all day John! I’ll be reading the blog properly tonight when my children are in bed, can’t wait!

  • Good day John,
    I am intrigued by your mystery health supplement and would really like ot try it out to see if it can diminish the osteo arthritis in my hands.
    Could you send me some details please on what it is and where to find it.