The Rowbrey’s Return to Guernsey
18th June 2021
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The Guernsey Yacht Club (GYC) has been promoting sailing in Guernsey since 1890 and the club offers some of the finest sailing, shore and social facilities in the Channel Islands. Last month, the GYC hosted their annual open day and invited other clubs and nautical associations to be part of the event.
There are no restrictions to on-island life, so gatherings such as these can take place for the whole community to enjoy without the need for masks or social distancing. From windsurfing and dinghy sailing to wing foiling and the showcasing of wreck dives, there was plenty on offer.
“There has been a real interest and buzz around the club, and we have enjoyed teaming up with fellow water users to showcase different aspects of other sports and pastimes all linked to our island waters. We hope to continue this theme throughout the year and offer a broader experience to our members.” – Anna Rivers, Commodore for the GYC.
Following this event, we also decided to speak with Maggie Rowbrey who recently become a GYC member and moved back to Guernsey in November 2020. Read on to find out more about Maggie’s appreciation of island life.
Can you tell us about yourselves and the reasons why you moved to Guernsey?
My husband Simon, daughter Georgie, myself and our dog Honey, all moved back to Guernsey in November 2020. Simon and I used to work for Guernsey airlines – Simon was a captain and I was a stewardess. We got married in St Andrew’s Church on the Grange in Guernsey’s capital in December 1986, the very same day we left the island to go and live in West Sussex as Simon had taken a position with British Caledonian Airways (BCal). BCal was taken over by British Airways, so Simon found himself as a first officer on the DC-10, later to become captain on the jumbo.
We have two children, Miles and Georgie. Miles moved to the island 5 years ago to fly for Blue Islands, with his girlfriend Rosey, who is a midwife. Miles is now a training captain with Guernsey’s airline, Aurigny. They married in 2019 and are expecting their first child in September. We moved to Sandbanks, Poole in 2000 and had twenty wonderful years there. When COVID-19 struck in 2020, Simon flew his last flight in March, without even knowing it! The 747 was grounded, Simon took voluntary redundancy and we made the decision to move back to Guernsey.
How has your experience been so far, particularly with the challenges of COVID-19?
We were very lucky to be allowed to move in November after selling our house in Poole. The first thing that struck us was how laid back everyone was as there was no need for on-island restrictions. No masks, everything was open – it was as if COVID-19 didn’t exist! We had come from a place that had been overrun by people last summer, so much so that we almost became prisoners in our own home. We think the island has coped admirably and are so ‘on it’. We feel incredibly safe and extremely lucky to be part of it.
Are you enjoying island life and what are you planning on doing next?
We absolutely love it here. We have been made to feel so welcome, especially at the Guernsey Yacht Club, where we joined as members straight away. We have a small Boston Whaler, which we brought over from Poole on the Trinity. We have a Botnia Targa on order, which will allow us to go further afield, when restrictions outside of Guernsey are lifted. We can’t wait to explore the French coastline. All in all, it’s been the perfect move. We look forward to the next chapter of our life here in beautiful Guernsey.