Meet the broker - Carol of Boatshed Dartmouth and Commercial
Hi Carol, what was your first experience of boating?
Growing up in Sheffield I didn’t really have any early boating memories so the first time I went on a boat was a passenger boat running out of Torquay when I moved there at 18 and I enjoyed it so much I got a job on it for the summer.
What did you do before you were a broker?
I ran my own passenger boat company in Torbay & Dartmouth for over 20 years. In the last few years since we sold up I have been in a sales and marketing manager and general manager for a large passenger boat operator.
What do you like about being a broker?
I look forward to getting out and about and meeting people who have the same love and passion for the water and boating as I do. The Boatshed family are great people to work with, they have all been really welcoming from the team at HQ to other experienced brokers giving us loads of help and advice.
What is your days timeline
In the past the first thing I did in the morning was check the wind and tides. Now as soon as I wake up i'm checking emails and the dashboard (Boatshed's internal software), and Facebook and Twitter as we have new pages set up. We also spend all our spare time looking at what boats are for sale and prices vessels are fetching when they sell.
If you were on a desert Island who would you like to be stranded with?
That would have to be Rick Stein as I’m a real foodie and I love his simplistic way of cooking so I’d never go hungry.
What is your best experience on a boat?
It’s difficult to pinpoint my best experience as there are so many but I think one of my favourite was having my twin girls christened on one of my boats. The vicar was a good friend and we anchored the boat off his parish and our ships bell was used to hold the holy water to bless them.
What is your worst experience on a boat?
My worst experience was on Brixham Belle in 1994. We used to moor up in the evening on a deep water swing mooring in the outer harbour. This particular evening it was a quite windy although still light, I’d pulled up the buoy and secured the vessel while the crew were shutting the engines down. I climbed down to get the launch started as it was bashing into the side of the boat unfortunately in the large swell I lost my footing and went between the Brixham Belle and the launch. Luckily I’m quite a good swimmer and managed to get to the surface, having amazing crew they had heard the splash and luckily had me back onboard within minutes. Although the first words they asked me was ‘did I still have the day’s takings on me?’ (I did!!) It did bring home that no matter how experienced on a boat you are Lifejackets should be worn without exception.
What is your favourite anchorage?
I have to say the River Dart as it has some amazing little secluded coves and is so beautiful.
What's your favourite onboard food?
I like simple sharing platters or Tapas – then whatever you have in the cupboard you can always make something of it and it looks good. Of course with the odd glass of wine or two!
If you could only do one voyage, where would your destination be?
I’d like to do the French canals, stopping in little villages and picking up fresh food and wine at different small French villages.
And what's the best or worst advice you've ever been given?
Best advice I was given was very early in my career and it’s a philosophy I’ve carried amongst all the staff I have had over the years ‘train people well enough so they can leave but treat them good enough so they don’t want to’ I also love inspirational posters and used to always have them on my office walls - I think the one below is my favourite.
Worst advice I keep getting from people for some strange reason – ‘just have one more glass of wine’