Around 55 OGA members gathered at the Harwich and Dovercourt Sailing Club for a delightful afternoon in the company of acoustic rock duo Silbury Hill. The club barge LKB6 took the task of feeding the collected host in her stride. As a 'landing kitchen barge' in 1944 she served 1000 meals a day anchored off Sword and Gold beaches so this was light work for the old converted lighter.
The new policy of pre-booking and pre-paying for food worked a treat, allowing hosts Sue Lewis and Howard Wheelton to judge the amount of delicious roast pork, ham and cheese perfectly, with plenty for all but little left over. Sue also performed sterling service behind the bar! The clear-up team consisted of Howard's sisters, Jacky and Kathryn, and Marion Shirley, the Solent Area Sec who was visiting for the occasion. Big thanks to them for helping us to leave the Barge possibly even cleaner than we found it.
The band were brilliantly on form and the intimate surroundings nicely complemented their acoustic rendition of great songs and we were again privileged to hear the lovely voice of Dutch OGA stalwart Else Wagemakers providing backing vocals on some of the numbers.
Christmas jumpers were much in evidence with Yvonne Mitchell's 'wearable tech' flashing sweater particularly visible. An inpromptu 'Christmas Jumper Choir' performed a rousing version of the 'Drunken Sailor'.
The HDSC bar kept us all well watered and all in all it was a splendid afternoon of gafferish craic full of sailor's tales and the hatching of plans for the coming season.
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