Apologies all. Few niggles getting the web site to send emails tot eh new email group. This is a trial, please ignore.
Apologies all. Few niggles getting the web site to send emails tot eh new email group. This is a trial, please ignore.
All members who were on our old Yahoo email group have now been transferred over to the new Google group. This web site posting should therefore be delivered to you by the new Google group. If this test is successful, the Yahoo group will be turned off. Please see the footer to group emails for details of how to email the entire group.
LDC are delighted to announce that the Dive Lectures 2018, brought to you by the London Diving Chamber in aid of Scuba Trust, will take place on Tuesday 6th March 2018, at the Royal Geographical Society in London.
Please also find details of NHS planned closure of Hyperbaric Chambers in England and what you can do while we are in this one month period of public consultation.
Now in their 19th year of the Dive Lectures, we welcome you back to the RGS for an evening of escapism, adventure and laughter, with great speakers, promotional stands and, most importantly, fundraising for a great cause.
It is with immense pleasure that they welcome to the stage, Ahmed Gabr, Egyptian scuba diver who holds the Guinness World Records for both The Deepest Scuba Dive and The Deepest Scuba Dive in Sea Water. Ahmed dived to a depth of 332.35 metres.
Following Ahmed on the main stage this year, they are honoured to present the Em
Entrance will be free so please ensure that you help us to fill those Scuba Trust buckets on the night. This is the Trust’s biggest fundraising event of the year so please do dig deep to make sure that we beat last year’s fantastic donation total.
Tickets are known to go extremely quickly, so register now to avoid missing out on your place.
Date: Tuesday 6th March 2018
Time: 7.00pm (doors open at 6.00pm)
Location: The Royal Geographical Society, 1 Kensington Gore, London, SW7 2AR
In other news before we move on to our incredible speaker information please read and have your say:
When you are new to joining a club….and we’ve had a few in the last few weeks, it can be hard to know whose who.
We’ve all been there, some more recently than others, like myself.
To have photos and names of approachable, friendly and helpful committee members that can help you find your way round the club and introduce you to new friends is why I am promoting the Committee Page on our website today!
Just click the link below to find out committee member names and what they do for the club.
We do have the same photos up on the wall in the club house if you forget to look them up on your phone before you come, but at least everyone, both new and old, regular and less so knows who this year’s Committee Members are…at least until November 2018.
Hope this helps! Remember – you don’t just have to approach committee members – everyone in the club is open and happy to chat too! See you at the club! (Thursdays)
For anyone interested in learning to mix their own Nitrox or Trimix and a pre-requisite to mixing your own gas at the club, the South East region of BSAC are running a Gas Blending course at our club house on 10th February. The day long course includes theory and practical sessions, ability to use the compressor is not a requirement. Book and pay on line here: http://www.bsac-se.org.uk/SDCPOE.asp The course can be attended by anyone even non divers, further info can be found here.
I always wondered why our Club Chairman Len Hards wore a T-Shirt with “Eat Sleep Dive Repeat” on our weekly Thursday Club night.
You see, I’m still a bit of a newbie to SCUBA Diving having only been diving 2 ½ years…and I am only used to wearing drysuits in old flooded slate pits or waters around the south coast of England and seeing no more than 4-5m in front of me.
I’ve been trying to write this trip report for a while (Trip was in September 2017!) and although I have had many good and varied personal and work reasons since coming back that have hindered me from starting I think one of the biggest fears has been ‘can my write up really do this trip justice’ – such was the lasting impact it had on me.
Then I realised, you know what, just like I didn’t understand Len’s T-Shirt before the trip….I don’t think anyone who hasn’t been on a liveaboard in the Red Sea can grasp just how amazing such a trip it is even if I wrote the best right up I could do or you had the time to read it all!
….And for those of you who have dived the Red Sea, well you are able to fill in the bits I miss with your own memories and stories…….
“If you can dive in that [dry suit] you can dive anywhere” they said….and so with that advice ringing in my ears off I set with 26 club members of the Kingston & Elmbridge Sub Aqua Club to Hurgarda in Egypt – to our awaiting Gin Palace for the week.
Now, I have always wanted to live aboard a “Gin Palace”, if only for a short while so I can pretend that I’m in some sort of Music Video like JAY-Z’s “Big Pimpin ft. UGK” or to be able to sing ‘I’m On A Boat’ by The Lonely Island ft. T-Pain. [Explicit WARNING – haven’t put links in as I am sure you will all go Google anyway now]
Obviously the ratio of males to females weren’t as high as in those videos and I am sure a lot of my diving buddies would probably be thinking more of Duran Duran’s ‘Rio’ or Celine Dion’s ‘My Heart Will Go On’ sort of music videos 😉 The latter thankfully didn’t get played and our boat stayed afloat…unlike the Titanic!
So, to the Gin Palace and what a beauty she was. BlueOTwo Horizon – The 5 Star Crown Jewel of the BlueOTwo Fleet and one where my diving life for a week was made unbelievably easy.
There was a “bell” for everything – the ship’s bell would sound to wake you up; to go to a briefing; to get kitted up; to have your breakfast, lunch and dinner….my body clock was so in tune with this bell that I couldn’t go to the loo without it (joke)…such was how our lives were on this boat for a week! (Glad to say that it didn’t take too long when got home to relieve oneself without a bell going off)
None of us really minded this bell, well most of the time, as it meant that we would be either be eating some amazing food prepared by our own chef and pastry chef, or we were going to be helped into and out of our kit to go diving to explore some amazing wreck and marine life.
The trip we had all eagerly signed up to 18 months previously was BlueOTwo’s ‘Best of the Wrecks’.
BlueOTwo’s website warns that there is no guarantee we would see all the wrecks on the sample itinerary due to weather conditions.
However, weather (get it, yes grammer nazi’s spelt it on purpose that way) God was on our side, or just because Paul Feakes our Diving Officer who seems attract good weather was on the trip, we got to do all of the main wrecks and even the long open water crossings were calm after all the stories I had been told!
Looking back at my dive log I went from from…Newhaven Sands (Milky Milky) and a check dive in Wraysbury in cold water and a dry suit to diving in a 3mm and 26-29oC water with really warm moving thermoclines that made me question, ‘did I wet myself?’ or worse still, had someone near me?!
Once I had gotten over diving in ‘bath temperature’ water, day and NIGHT (for we did 3 night dives which were freaking awesome) and being able to see the length of a football field in front of me I knew the rest of the week would be amazing…and it was!
The ship’s crew and guides did an amazing job giving us 30 minute briefing about the wrecks we were about to dive, the history of each vessel, the dive plan and places to look out for along the way and then getting us kitted up in two separate groups to go diving.
What stood out for me, apart from the amazing diving, was the care given to making our diving as easy as possible by the crew. Just as you got your wetsuit on, there was a member of the crew there zipping you up; just as you went to put on your BCD with all your kit on, there was a member of the crew helping get your arm through the jacket and sorting all your kits so it didn’t tangle….or kindly unattaching you from the pillar thanks to one of my so called diving friends having latched me back onto just before standing up. You know who you are…the time will come…oh yes…your time will come….) And then after the dive when you got out they would be there to help you get your heavy kit off and give you a thirst quenching refreshing drink. I don’t believe diving get’s any easier than that.
Each dive was to last no more than 1 hour and have no deco time and for each dive there was the offer to go with a guide, which on most occasions my buddy and I did as they knew the wrecks better than we did and all the best places.
Here is what we dived:
I was amazed at the immense sizes of some of the wrecks we dived. The Thistlegorm was an amazing wreck even with Alex’s butt or fin in my face…my fault entirely as too eager to get ahead, but eventually I slowed down and enjoyed seeing all the old lorries, motorbikes, tyres, ammunition, shells, train and wagons to name a few things. The Giannis D engine room was AWESOME – HUGE. The El Minya was a tight space, but by the end of the week we felt confident of each other abilities and control to go in down the corridors and really check that wreck out. The Saleem Express was an amazing wreck, but also a very solemn dive for everyone; and not everyone wished to dive inside this wreck understandably, due to the relative recent history and large number of souls lost.
The Gubal Barge at night was so exciting – like something out of Abyss as we descended seeing all these groups of torches from other divers and the shear amount of life that comes out at night was incredible. I literally had a regulator shaped smirk on my face thinking how cool this is – in the middle of a sea at night…no one at home will believe what I am doing or can see right now!
The Brothers, had some of my deepest dives ever there, sharks (Oceanic and Thresher popped over to check us out), dolphins for some of the group (okay most of the group, except me…sniff, although they did chase us in the Zodiacs (inflatable boat with rigid bottom – A.K.A RIB in UK)) and a turtle for Jackie and Brian.
My top 10 stand out moments for me were:
I think the photos below really speak for themselves as to the fun we had (Thanks Paul Feakes, Jacqui Cole, Jason Start, Lucy Evans and Nathan Targett for the photos)
If you are interested in learning to dive or already dive and want to do more diving and be part of a large BSAC scuba club with it’s own club house, bar, compressors for your fills and boats then contact us and look forward to an action packed 2018!
(Ed. Tip – Click on a photo to open up the lightbox viewer – photos load quicker)
Kingston and Elmbridge Sub Aqua Club will have a stall at the Malden Centre open day this Saturday 25th November.
It’s our chance to show people why Scuba Diving is an amazing sport and why we keep coming back for more.
We are looking for more club members to book a slot during the day to pass on your experiences and enthuse others to come have a try dive and then if would like to move on to learning.
Please contact Brian on 07930 148 498
And for those who are not yet members or don’t know how to Scuba Dive but would like to know more…..then we look forward to seeing you down at the Malden Centre on Saturday.
All your diving related questions will be answered including any of the following:
Our last sheltered water training* Weekend of the season held at Vobster on Saturday was a another great day the weather was quite good to us apart from a few down pours.
Big thank you to Paul F, Len, and Martin L for giving up there time to come along and train the students.
Well done to Ian A and Lucy on their Dive Leader training, well done to Jon P on his Sports Diver training well done to Hywel on your Ocean Diver training.
It was nice to see other faces there just coming along for a dive and a good laugh.
Ed: *We are still holding pool training sessions over the winter months for anyone interested in gaining their Ocean and Sports Diver qualifications. Contact us if you want to learn to dive, brush up on skills, transfer over from another SCUBA body.