RYA Training & Courses

RYA Training & Courses

We are different from the rest as we do

1) 5 day courses including a weekend-only 3 days leave plus courses over a long and standard weekend.#
2) 7  day courses including a crossing to France or the Channel Islands

3) 3 Weekend course with emphasis on sailing in the Med
3) No hidden extras
4) Much better food than most schools

Why Choose Us: Competent Crew Sailing Courses

1) We strive to make sure you enjoy competent crew course. We love sailing but teach less than 10 courses per instructor a year so we don’t go stale. Unlike some schools we don’t go in for back to back RYA courses. Running a course properly is hard work but if a job is worth doing….

2) We don’t do hidden extras like ships kitty or ‘evening meals to be taken ashore‘. We include free loan of foul weather gear, also a Log book for competent crew.(The crew often vote for a couple of evening meals ashore and we pay our way).

3) Wild Spirit does serious races like the Fastnet. We are better equipped, faster and more stable than most school yachts.Our food is also better as Phil, Nick and I like cooking, but it is a sailing course not a culinary outing!

4) We operate as part of Lymington Yacht Charters (LYC) Sea School a well established RYA training Centre who also maintain Wild Spirit. We run out of Lymington Yacht Haven, voted best marina in the country which adjoins the National Park also has free car parking.

5) We don’t try and fill a yacht then hire in free lance Instructors–you can talk to us before you book–Paul 01823 433813, Phil 07803 176 977, or email us at [email protected]. We will give you honest advice–not a hard sell.

6) The majority of our Race team and Cruising trip customers have done a RYA course with us. All of our 2106 Round ireland team have sailed with us before, the majority of our Sydney Hobart teams for 2013 and 2014 plus the Caribbean 600 in 2015 and 2016 have sailed with Paul before. We want repeat custom but we also want you to pass your RYA courses first time.

7) Paul is a Chartered Environmental Health Practitioner, until April 2013 Vice Chairman of a £900M p.a NHS Trust, Nick is an Engineer who has led flotilla charters and run an exclusive holiday resort. We are honest, give straight advice and aim to fully comply with all RYA Competent Crew requirements. If it has our name on it then it’s done right.

Updated 9/2/16

Click on the course title for more details.

Hi Everyone,

A brilliant week aboard Wild Spirit! My desk has finally stopped moving around so I’ve been able to concentrate on setting up a place to share photos. After a couple of dead-ends, I’ve created a website for us to share….

Sept 2017

Morning Paul

Just a quick note from Susan and me to thank you for the excellent training on both my day skipper and subsequently Susan’s competent crew training- it certainly has been beneficial .
Last week we brought our new boat Sambuca of Ichenor ( new to us that is !) a Southerley 28 home from an extremely tidal mud berth in the upper reaches of Portsmouth to our location in Poole .
We cannot overstate how much the training on Wild Spirit helped us to deal with what was actually an incredibly fraught and stressful collection without a single cross word or disagreement during the entire journey. Testament indeed to the benefits of good preparation and training.
In all, we dealt with getting her out of the inaccessible mud marina at the highest point of the tide at 2100 on a Friday night with less than 6 inches of water under the keel and no higher tide for two weeks- on a boat that has been on the hard for two years. and which currently has no working depth sounder. It was a little stressful .
This was followed by our arrival into Gosport Marina where upon returning from paying for the marina fee we stepped down into the cabin to discovered an electrical fire where the stop solenoid on the engine had shorted out and set fire to the cabling, destroying the solenoid and wiring back to the control panel ( Susan knew where the fire extinguishers were – we had briefed before departure )
Whilst jury rigging a solution to get us home and figuring out how I was going to stop the motor once it was running ,we then discovered a significant diesel leak ( of course emanating from the only piece of copper pipe in the entire system that I had not replaced before launching the boat). Our romantic dinner in Portsmouth was hastily substituted for a Pizza delivery and a warm beer whilst I hung upside down in the bilges stemming the flow to an acceptable drip with tape , spanners and mole grips .
Next morning as per our training we were up significantly before our planned departure awaiting the favorable tide to take us over to Yarmouth, as trained VHF on , At this point Portsmouth harbormaster informed that HMS Queen Elizabeth was on her way in and that due to the 250 m exclusion zone the harbor would be closed at 8 AM for two hours. Susan had the boat prepared and we slipped from the marina in less than 10 minutes (coffee mugs still in hand ) and made our transit at the Cenotaph in plenty of time..
Due to lack of wind we motored most of the way finding ourselves off Yarmouth by 11 AM, After a quick consultation and a check of the tides we decided to push on for Poole where I could make proper repairs. Leaving the Needles Channel the wind came up on the beam we shut down the engine ( decompressors and a rubber glove required !) and had a perfect sail all the way into Poole.

In total we did our first trip together 48 NM in 8 hours on un unknown boat with many issues in safety and had a great sail and a laugh along the way.
I cannot overstress how beneficial.it has been for both of us to have undertaken the same training with same instructor- for the skipper to know that your crew has everything prepared before you need to ask and for the crew to know the skipper has done his homework and has a route plan and alternatives in mind leads to harmony on the boat .
Susan is already looking to undertake her day skipper and as soon as I have clocked up enough miles we will be back with you for more training on Wild Spirit
My only complaint regarding the competent crew training would be the fact that when I instructed that Susan should ” Splice the mainbrace ” when we arrived in Poole she looked at me in confusion . Some improvement required for your next group of competent crew Paul .

Best regards
Pierre and Susan


What happened on the RYA course at end of July?
Two of the students were regular ‘Wild Spiriters’ and we set off about 1930 from Lymington across to Studland bay where we anchored for the night. Lulworth range was closed so, catching the tide in the morning, we sailed round to Worrbarrow bay then on to Lulworth cove and continued along the World Heritage Jurassic coast to Weymouth. That evening we were invited to a BBQ by another Wild Spirit at his house overlooking the Bay.
The next morning we sailed back after various RYA exercises and did our night pilotages before tying up in Lymington. Day 3 started by sailing across to the Buoys off Yarmouth for more RYA work then onto Ocean Village in Southampton where we visited the 2nd oldest Pub in Britain. The next day we sailed round to Portsmouth harbour and then overnighted at Haslar Marina with the crew opting for a meal out at an excellent value ‘Eat all you can’ Chinese.
On the last day we sailed back to Lymington watching the Cowes week racing as we went whilst also achieving 10 knots ourselves at times.
With little rain but up to Force 6 we covered 147 NM and as well as covering the syllabus saw a bit of Cowes week.

Absolutely great mate…Bruce, Nangus Australia (seriously he is called Bruce).

Offers: RYA Competent Crew Course

If you do a RYA Competent Crew Course with us we have offers on some cruises, otherwise you can claim £50 off a cruise or race marked as suitable for novices.
For cruises and races there is a hire charge for Oilies, for RYA courses these are included in the course fee–we don’t do hidden extras!

ID Join Likely Finish Event Price Spaces  
WS377 12 Nov
17 Nov
RYA Course £425 1 Email Wild Spirit

RYA course out of lymington.
you can do either Day Skipper if you have the necessary pre-course experience/ Day Skipper Theory or Competent Crew which requires no experience.
It can be cold but we do have heating on board and we will be in a Marina with Hot Showers and electric every night.
The sea is at about the same temperature on 1st January as 1st May so November is not as cold as some might think, we have to get 4 hours of night sailing in and this is ofetn done in 2 or 3 sessions on a November course which still allows for a Pint afterwards.
Cost includes all on board food (better than most sea schools) use of Oilies marina fees plus fuel.
If you want to just sail and have your own Oilies deduct £25.
Probably 3 meals ashore which are extra.
Lymington Yacht Haven has great facilities and free car parking. easy train access as well.
30/9—One place left.