The Quiet Man

Reg Seal, 8th Aug 2000

On the 29th July 2000 Norman Whibley died in Southend Hospital

I first met Norman on 1966 when I came to Paglesham with my West Wight Potter 'ODIN'. In those days Norman was sailing a dinghy called 'ARCULARIS' but to be replaced later by the Bradwell 18 'JEMIMA PUDDLEDUCK'.

Content to sail the Crouch, Roach and Broomhill rivers with a quiet secure anchorage at night in the Yolksfleet, Norman and his wife Gladys spent many a happy weekend in the following years.

In 1969 I bought 'DORMOUSE' and Norman and Gladys signed on as racing crew. By 1972 the then Race Officer, Kingsley Varcoe, agreed that it was about our turn to win something and we got the Paglesham Pot and Lifeboat (Cruisers) Cup.

Norman was not one for yelling orders from the cockpit or foredeck and accepted my often-inept handling of 'DORMOUSE' from late starts, near collisions with other crafts to groundings, in a quiet manner.

August last year was our last sail together in 'DORMOUSE', just a potter along the Crouch, at anchor for lunch and back to the berth. It is very sad that after so many years my old shipmate has gone to his final anchorage.

Our deepest sympathy and condolences to his wife Gladys.