Instructors and Officers

Paul Scaife - Chief Shorebased Instructor
Jo Whattam - Shorebased Instructor
Quentin Howat - Shorebased Instructor
Rod Swales - Shorebased Instructor
Mike Wilson - Diesel Engine Instructor
Gary Cameron - RADAR, VHF and First Aid Instructor

Maggie Morris - Chairman
Darren Rigg - Vice Chairman
Jill Salmons - Treasurer
Peter Richardson - Safeguarding Officer
Mark Johnson - Events Coordinator

Paul Scaife - Chief Shorebased Instructor

Paul started sailing over 25 years ago with a short Introduction to Sailing course in the Mediterranean and became hooked. He decided that he needed to know a little more about what he was doing. Paul then completed the shorebased and practical courses with York Cruiser Training Centre before qualifying as a Yachtmaster Offshore some 10 years later.

During this time, various crossings of the channel were interspersed with the end of season deliveries in the Mediterranean, North Sea Crossings and trips up the Irish Sea.

For 12 years, Paul was a member of a syndicate that owned a Bavaria 36 followed by a Bavaria Vision 40 based in Troon, and cruised the Clyde and west coast of Scotland. Throughout his entire sailing career, he has sailed on various boats based in Whitby, racing around the bay and along the coast in the club handicap fleet. Paul currently owns a half share in a Hunter 27 OOD in Whitby.

Paul teaches YCTC's RYA Coastal Skipper & Yachtmaster Offshore shorebased course. 

Quentin Howat - Shorebased Instructor

Quentin’s experiences with the sea began in the late 60’s. However, most of this was not exactly akin to the activities of YCTC, as they involved 12,000 ton ships on top of the water before 7,500 ton boats under the water, during his time in the Royal Navy. Sails were obviously a particularly inefficient form of propulsion for submarines but he did manage to get the odd opportunity for a bit of dinghy sailing when in port. Perhaps the greatest opportunity the Forces provided was a lifetime experience of competing in the Tall Ships Race from Plymouth to Tenerife aboard the Sail Training Association’s 3-masted top sail schooner ‘Malcolm Miller’. After leaving the Forces, his involvement with the sea in any format took a back seat for many years.

A mutual friend then introduced him to YCTC, from which time Quentin believes he has not looked back. He completed his Day Skipper and Yachtmaster shorebased courses, as well as Day Skipper and Coastal Skipper practicals, all with YCTC, before becoming a qualified RYA Shorebased Instructor in 2010. Since that time, he has instructed the Day Skipper shorebased courses for YCTC combining this with sailing, entirely for pleasure he would stress, with friends on a variety of larger cruising yachts.

Whilst thoroughly enjoying his various sailing trips, he would freely admit that instructing also gives him a great amount of pleasure by meeting such an amazingly wide variety of people but all with a common interest.

Quentin teaches the RYA Day Skipper Theory course for YCTC. 

Jo Whattam - Shorebased Instructor

Jo started sailing in 2006 on the River Humber. She and her husband bought their first boat there, a 35ft Sigma, then sailed it north to the Orkneys then out west to the Hebrides. They winterise their boat in the Firth of Clyde. Sailing around Scotland brings many challenges; keen weather, sea states and tidal gates! Hey but the views and wildlife are stunning.

Jo's aim is to share knowledge and to help people to understand the shorebased theory of sailing - and to make learning fun.

Jo teaches the RYA Day Skipper Theory course for YCTC. 

Rod Swales - Shorebased Instructor

Rod is a retired Electronics Design engineer and his interest in sailing started when holidaying in the Greek Islands which started him thinking “what a lovely way to visit the many otherwise inaccessible bays and beaches”.

Realising that it would be sensible to learn how to sail safely, he attended the YCTC shore-based theory courses commencing in 1985 and culminating in 1988 with an Ocean Yachtmaster Certificate. He always calls this certificate “Ocean Yachtmaster – brackets desk” since at the time he had only one cruise under his belt – Poole to Weymouth and back and he has never completed the associated “Ocean” practical examination. He did then back up much of the theory with practical certificates up to the level of Coastal Skipper and also holds a Certificate of Competence issued by the U.K Maritime and Coastguard Agency. He is also a qualified RYA shore-based Day Skipper instructor and holds certificates for Small Craft Basic Sea Survival (twice), First Aid and Maritime Radio Operator.

His has logged well over 17,000 miles at sea, and unforgettable cruises that include Iceland, South Coast of Ireland, Clyde to Solent, Portugal to Las Palmas, D-Day landing beaches/Baie de Seine, North Brittany, several visits to the Channel Islands, Scilly Islands and West Country. 

Gary Cameron - Radar, VHF and First Aid Instructor

Gary started SCUBA diving many years ago and qualified as an Open Water Instructor with BSAC. Gary progressed through to BSAC Boat Handling Instructor and Diver Coxswain assessor. He realized that he needed to advance his theory knowledge and enrolled with YCTC to do Day Skipper theory.

A few years late he decided to actually have a go at some sailing and really enjoyed it. It is more enjoyable than powerboating. He enrolled for the Day Skipper practical and subsequently did the Coastal Skipper/Yachtmaster theory.

Gary has been on most of the YCTC summer cruises. Love sailing abroad and in Scotland. Gary is also an RYA powerboat Instructor, SRC Assessor, First Aid Instructor and RADAR Instructor.

Mike Wilson - Diesel Engine Instructor

Mike is a Senior Engineer at Nestlé, alongside his role as a Group Scout Leader in York.

As a trained mechanic, Mike teaches the RYA Diesel Engine Maintenance course for YCTC. 

Maggie Morris - Chairman

Maggie's introduction to sailing was with the York Cruiser Training Centre in 2008. Within days of attending her first YCTC Monthly Social at the York Brewery, she was crewing a 36' Bavaria in the Clyde, sailing in company with the crew of a 40' Bavaria alongside the 2008 Fife Regatta.

Having studied RYA Day Skipper Theory with YCTC in 2008-09 and RYA Coastal Skipper & Yachtmaster Theory with YCTC in 2009-10, she completed the Coastal Skipper Practical in the Outer Hebrides that summer. She has since sailed in the Mediterranean, North Atlantic, English Channel and Caribbean. Also on the River Ouse in York for RYA Dinghy Levels 1 and 2, Race and Powerboat training.

After an 18-year career in national museums, Maggie is now self-employed, undertaking various projects in the UK and overseas. She took over as Chairman of YCTC in 2012, and is very proud to lead the operations and advancement of this shorebased training centre established in 1975. Promoting safety on the water through shorebased study and practical experience is Maggie's main aim, alongside development of YCTC's range of courses and social activities to ensure a continued presence in York, serving potential and longstanding Members with a common interest in sail or motor cruising.

Darren Rigg - Vice Chairman

Darren is the Vice-Chairman of the York Cruiser Training Centre. He is a Yachtmaster (Offshore) with nearly 10,000 sailing miles gained in the Caribbean, the Med, South Africa and Asia.

Having passed the Yachtmaster Coastal in Thailand and Offshore in South Africa, Darren is an advocate of training and gathering a wide sailing experience.

Darren is also a Dinghy sailing instructor at Yorkshire Ouse Sailing Club, and thoroughly recommends Dinghy sailing to all Yachties. Small boats are so much fun, and really teach you how to use sails efficiently and safely.

Professionally, Darren is an IT Cloud Consultant and although not his normal field, is responsible for this website..

Jill Salmons - Treasurer

Jill's interest in sailing started when her sister and brother-in-law bought an ex-Sunsail Beneteau 36 around the same time as her husband Ian did the RYA Day Skipper Theory course with YCTC.

Jill's first trip with YCTC was to Croatia, and Greece the following year.
She enjoyed them so much that she decided to take a more 'hands-on' approach, and completed the RYA Day Skipper Theory course with YCTC.

Jill has been on YCTC trips to Croatia, Greece and Majorca as well as sailing in Scotland with her sister and brother-in-law.

Jill's other interests are cycling in France in the summer months, and hill walking.

Mark Johnson - Events Host

Mark started sailing his Mirror Dinghy at the age of 18, and the passion for sailing and the sea just grew and grew. He did his Day Skipper Shore based Course at the age of 31, and did his Day Skipper Practical on the Solent shortly afterwards . Mark has recently become a Yachtmaster.

Mark has been in the Events Business for the past 28 years and has staged pharmaceutical conferences as far afield as Mauritius, Miami, Canada, and every main Capital City in Europe. Two years ago Mark became Fellow of the Guild of International Professional Toastmasters and regularly officiates at Black Tie Events and Weddings etc.

Mark owns a 40’ Jeanneau which he recently sailed from Plymouth, to her new home port of Hartlepool, and welcomes YCTC Members on board who want to gain experience .

Peter Richardson - Safeguarding Officer

Peter has owned and operated power boats since the age of 16 and keeps his current vessel, a Beneteau Flyer, in Bridlington harbour.

Peter is chairman of Wetwheels Yorkshire CIC, the northern operator for the Wetwheels Foundation (UK Charity 1148600), which enables people with disabilities to access the sea on a specially adapted, fully accessible power catamaran from its homeport of Whitby. Peter is a commercially qualified skipper and underwent his shore-based training at YCTC.

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