Camel Trophy Boat Tow
HBRO took 25 Rigid Inflatables from Lee-on-Solent to Hastings Pier 29th April 2001

An interesting offer was put to HBRO last month. Jonny Boys of JBT Marine was looking for willing volunteers to tow a number of Camel Trophy rigid inflatable boats from Lee-on-Solent in Hampshire to Hastings in East Sussex. With the total lack of events this would be a good opportunity to meet up with friends and catch up on news. I applied and awaited instructions. Before the big day I went to the Club's monthly Southern area pub meet. Talking to other members I got the impression that these boats were bigger than I first thought. Having a Series III and towing a caravan you get to know your limitations. A quick call to Jonny Boys made my mind up. At 7 metres long and weighing in at 1.6 tonnes I thought it would be a good idea to let the more capable vehicles tow, and I would go along as a support vehicle with the option of towing if a vehicle broke down.

I arrived at HMS Daedalus in Lee-on-Solent at 08:00 to be greeted by the sight of 25 Camel Ribs neatly lined up and ready to go. Some members had already arrived they quickly hooked up and completed their various safety checks. After the 09:00 briefing the convoy set off to Hastings. The trip was pretty uneventful other than having to go through Havant town centre as a section of the main A27 was shut for bridge repairs.

Once back onto the A27 I took the opportunity to overtake the last section of the convoy to take some pictures from a footbridge over the A27 at Chichester. The convoy slowly wound its way to Hastings arriving at 12:00. The trailers were unhitched on Hastings Pier just in time for a spot of lunch. Jonny had laid on lunch at the theatre opposite the pier. From the 1st floor restaurant the line up of Land Rovers and boats looked very impressive. After a quick stroll to take the sea air it was time to head home.


You can find out more about the Camel Boats and JBT Marine at their web sites:

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