Tributes to Chris Rowland, 1942 - 2019

Updated: Mar 19, 2019

From Ruth Tracey:

Chris had been a member of Seavets since the late 80s, making him probably the longest serving active member. When I joined Seavets in 1989, and became Secretary soon after, Chris was already on the Committee. In the next couple of years he re-wrote and re-designed the Seavets Racing Manual, and also had a major hand in re-writing the Seavets Constitution, all of which remain largely unchanged to this day. They are a testament to Chris’s attention to detail.

Chris served as Seavets Chairman from 1996 - 1999, and last year stepped up to be Secretary when there were no other volunteers. He came as a buy-one-get-one-free package, bringing Lesley as a committee member too. We were grateful to them both for stepping into the breach.

On the water Chris participated in racing, cruising, social sailing and holidays, both in Minorca and Quiberon. In all of these and in all conditions Chris was a steady and reliable sailor - I don’t recall ever seeing him fall in, although I am sure he must have done. His sail number, 242, is indelibly written on my memory - he was almost always in front of me. When he and Lesley moved down to Christchurch he rarely came racing, but was a regular at social sailing events on the south coast and took part in many cruising days. They both joined in the Seavets holiday in Quiberon for many years.

For many years Chris has occasionally acted as Race Officer and sharing a committee boat with him was always an enjoyable time. He was typically meticulous in the way he set the course and ran the racing; a good day’s racing was guaranteed with him in charge.

Even when Chris was not on the committee, he could be relied on for sensible advice, and I remember mulling things over with him when I was Chairman, using him as a sounding board for ideas and problems. He will be sorely missed.

From Alan Rowlands:

“Chris was a stalwart of windsurfing almost from the start of the sport. In the RAF Sailing Association he was Rear Commodore Windsurfing, an instructor and frequent racer. Within Seavets he and his wife Lesley have held many years of Committee membership, and possibly more than any others. Over 70, yet still active until struck down most severely last autumn, he was an example of every benefit to be had from our sport- fitness, strength, commitment, responsibility, enthusiasm, and the list could go on.”

Chris racing at Barnt Green

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