Very sad end of era

I was really sad to see this photo of the ruins of the old Thornycroft yard on Platts Eyot going up in flames last week. It truly marked the end of a era in a very sad way as the blaze, which was fought by fire crews from all over the area, put the final nail in the coffin of what was once a thriving local business that built some of the finest fast launches in the world.

Life-affirming project

The Chernobyl mums and their children relax aboard the Richmond Venturer

I’ve always had a lot of time for the charity called the River Thames Boat Project, which aims to introduce people to our wonderful river and to give people – particularly youngsters and the disabled – the chance to spend time on the water.

Ashes remembered

Queen Mary Sailing Club

Whenever Staines regatta comes around, it’s always a bit of a poignant time and this Saturday the event is being staged as a tribute to the memory of the crew of the Ashes eight, three of whom – David Firman, Alan Wickens and Alan Choules – died in a tragic accident at Penton Hook in April 1971.