Eric Bromham

I was R/O with RSL/CSM/TMM from 1970 to 1987.
My first trip was INDIAN CITY ( 45,000ton Bulk )  as Junior R/o , my Senior R/o was the famous  John ( J R M ) Matthews ( RIP ) - Master, " Flash " Thomas - C/o Brian Jones ( RIP ) - C/e Jack Barnes - 2/e Jack Chatten ( RIP ).

Subsequently I sailed on - DEVON CITY ( Doxford ) - Houston City - Most of the 840's  - Devon City (Japanese Built Bulk ) -  and TMM vsls -  Maria Elisa - Amparo - Bibi - Lerma - Voyager 1 - Gela - and Sonia M _ ( some more than once !! )

Some of the people I remember - 
Those across the bar  ( RIP ) -   Brian Jones - Jack Chatten - Graham Hardy - Tom Thistleton - Geoff Garlick - Tom Willoughby - Jim Harrison - Mo Green - Danny Trigg - Jim Murray -
And those still with us ( I Hope ) -
Tony Lightfoot - Pete Boroughs - Jem Hudson - Mark Higgins - Ray Mcnulty -   Ian ( Jo-----------ck ) Cowan   - Nev William - P.J.Prendergast - Gordon Walker - Fred Taylor - Reg Smith 
and many more -

In 1987 I took the plunge after a trip on the Sonia M and offered my resignation to move on to other things.
Some of you I sailed with knew I had a desire to work on sailing vessels - some were dissmissive (don't go to sea on anything less than 20,000 tons sonny )
But other were more encouraging and I have to thank some of the mates for helping me with some practical navigation etc (I must be one of the very few "yachties" to reduce a sight using the haversine formula) With this knowledge and considerable sailing miles gained since the age of about 12 yrs ,  I obtained a Yachtmaster Ocean Ticket.

I knew of a company called Windjammer Barefoot Cruises ( an outfit not with out controversy ) For many years they had an advert taking up the whole back page of a certain " Gentlemans Magazine " ( Penthouse I think ) It showed the aft deck of a large sailing schooner in a tropical sea , there was a large rum barrel lashed down on trestles and reclining in front of it was a scantily clad young lady who had probably been the centre page the month before! This is the place for me I thought !!!

I was taken on within a few months and spent a good few years sampling the rum and some of the ladies ( well they looked like centre folds after a few rums ) Oh and a bit of sailing too !!
Some of the trips were - 2nd Mate Yankee Clipper, 180ft 3 mast schooner 60 pax  - Mate  Polynesia  200 ft 4 mast Schooner ( ex Portuguese Grand Banks Schooner Argus ) 126 pax - also 2 motor supply vessels - Amazing Grace  ( ex Scottish Lights Board Ship Pharos )  converted for 65 pax and abt 200 tons freight - and Barefoot Rogue ex North Sea trawler - 16 pax abt 100 tons freight. 
When I joined the Barefoot Rogue ( my favourite ships name ever !! ) the Captain was one Phil Codd , who had the distinction of being fired from RSL 3 times, as cadet, 3rd mate and 2nd Mate, or so he told us, I cannot think of a more fittingly named vessel to find him aboard !!!
My last hoorah was Captain of the Bosses yacht Tondeleyo, a 90 ft Sparkman and Stevens ketch .
Then off for 2 yrs in the South Pacific .

A change of tack in 1996 with a year at a wooden boatbuilding school in Lowestoft and a year at Fairlie Restorations re-building large wooden yachts built by the famous Scottish designer/builder William Fife.

The last 10 years I upgraded to a Yachtmaster Instructor and taught Theory and Practical sailing based out of Gibraltar.

Now having turned 65 (still with a valid ENG 1 !!) I am the grateful recipient of the RSL and State pensions, so I have slowed down a bit, I am writing this from Fort Lauderdale Florida  having just returned from a trip through the Bahamas.