RYA Instructors and Skippers

Bruno Brown

Cruising Instructor, Commercial Skipper, Sea Survival, First Aid, VHF Operator

Following 22 years in the RAF as a Technician, Bruno has combined his love of flying with his love of the sea to become a senior gliding instructor as well as a sailing instructor. His enthusiasm for teaching shines through, giving his students the confidence to progress quickly towards their aims.

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Dhara Thompson

Yachtmaster Instructor, Commercial Skipper, Sea Survival, First Aid, VHF Operator, Company Director

Before training as a sailing instructor, Dhara lived on and maintained boats for over 20 years. In that time he has been a community development worker supporting numerous projects and is keen to make learning accessible to everyone. He is a co-founder of Sail Boat Project. As well as instructing he finds and engages with groups interested in our activities. Dhara is RYA Chief Instructor of our Chichester base.

Geoff Sheridan

Commercial Skipper, Sea Survival, First aid, VHF Operator, Company Director

Geoff has always loved boats. He grew up sailing dinghies and steering canal boats, then discovered yachts later in life. A whole new world of knowledge and adventure opened up, along with an ambition to share his passion and excitement for coastal sailing with others. He loves racing dinghies in Seaford bay and sailing with his small children. In his spare time, he runs a graphic design company, plays jazz trumpet, reads books about sailing and dreams of adventure on the high seas.

Jacquie Dowding

Commercial Skipper, Sea Survival, First aid, VHF Operator, Company Director

Jacquie has been around boats and boating most of her life. She loves the idea that sailing gives you a sense of freedom and peace, even in stormy weather – what can you do, anyway, but go with it? She has raced, sailed from Scandinavia, the Atlantic and coastal Pacific Ocean and along Central America. She has a passion for the environment and skippering allows her to mix her passions in one boat! Also a part time English teacher, she lives aboard her own sailing boat in Brighton. Jacquie is RYA Principal of our Chichester base.

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Karen Luyckx

Commercial Skipper, Sea Survival, First Aid, VHF Operator

Karen was lucky enough to spend many summers in her late teens and early twenties as a Hobiecat instructor on the Belgian north sea, but was torn away from the sea by her environmental and human rights activism. Fifteen years later, thanks to Sail Boat Project, she discovered that sailing, having fun and making the world a better place can go hand in hand. Karen loves figuring out ways to help newcomers understand how to best harness the power of the wind and sea.

Nigel Owen

Cruising Instructor, Shorebased Instructor, Short Range Certificate Assessor, Commercial Skipper, Sea Survival, First Aid, VHF Operator

In December 1987 Nigel completed his RYA Competent Crew. Ever since that cold winters week he has been hooked on sailing, both cruising and working his way through the RYA training scheme to qualify both as a shorebased instructor in 2000 and a Cruising Instructor 2003. As well as instructing, Nigel completed the Fastnet Race in 2005 and 2 legs of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race in 2007 / 2008. Having recently retired from 35 years in the aerospace industry, he now has even more time to indulge his passion for the sea.

Simon Lambert

Cruising Instructor, Commercial Skipper, Sea Survival, First Aid, VHF Operator

Professional, supportive and relaxed skipper who loves the ocean environment & wildlife. I enjoy helping people believe in themselves so they can achieve great results.

Shorebased team and Directors

Ariadne Bechthold

Day Skipper, Sea Survival, First Aid, Company Director

An accomplished broadcaster and film maker, Ariadne is the co-founder of Afghan Voice CIC, a community media organisation based in London that works with minority ethnic community groups. She has used her skills to capture many of our events on camera. She has a background in event management and catering.

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Ben Gillett

Yachtmaster Instructor, Commercial Skipper, Sea Survival, First Aid, VHF Operator, Company Director

Ben grew up windsurfing & racing dinghies in Chichester harbour. During a career as a health service manager he became involved in cruising and gained his Yachtmaster qualification. In 2008 he ran away to sea, volunteering & working in the UK sail training industry, skippering a 95ft gaff ketch for a charity based in Devon. Now back home near Chichester, he works at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.

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Anton Pruden

Anton started sailing early with his father racing Mirror dinghies form Brighton beach. The family upgrade to cruising was mostly in Holland: “Riddle of the Sands” type sailing in the Waddenzee as well as the Baltic & the Med. With his wife Sue, who also volunteers with Sailboat, they have a Bavaria 30 in Gosport. When time allows from his goldsmith’s business in Ditchling he sails on her off the South Coast, Channel Isles and France, and with friends in Greece and the Baltic.

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