Chris’ seafaring experience spans over 25 years, most of which he has spent under sail.
His involvement in sail training started as a student, working his summer holidays at an international summer school, taking youngsters sailing in small craft and yachts. He had his first tall ship experience as a trainee with the Sail Training Association (STA) in 1994, and soon gained recommendations to sail as a volunteer watch officer, followed by relief bosun and third officer aboard their two 150ft topsail schooners and later their 60m brigs, with trainees aged from 16 – 24 years old. On graduation (with a degree in Modern Languages) in 1998, he joined the Royal Navy for a short service commission and served for the next 6½ years in a variety of surface ships and nuclear submarines, during which time he continued to manage to fit in voyages with the STA in his leave periods.
On leaving the Royal Navy in 2005, Chris found employment as second mate on board the two barques Lord Nelson and Tenacious, owned and operated by the Jubilee Sailing Trust (JST). These ships were purpose-built to allow people of 16 years upwards of all physical abilities to sail on equal terms, allowing people living with sometimes severe physical disabilities to experience the thrill of being part of the crew of a square-rigged sailing ship. He remained with the JST until late 2019, and during this time he progressed through the ranks and became Master in 2012. During his time with the JST he has been around the world, sailed around the three Great Capes (twice around Cape Horn) and visited the Antarctic peninsula. When the Lord Nelson was taken out of service in October 2019, Chris used the opportunity to continue his professional training and is now hugely looking forward to returning to sea!
Chris lives on the isle of Seil, near Oban in Scotland, and when he is not at sea is usually found at the boatyard fitting out his 10m sailing yacht for adventurous cruising.