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Co-founders

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Debbie and Adam started Classic Sailing in 1996 whilst Eve of St Mawes was being built. We were only able to do this with the finical assistance of friends and relatives and a large bank mortgage on the boat. All loans were paid off in time and Eve has gone on to become the foundation of Classic Sailing.

Right from the beginning our mission statement has been;

To take people to sea for safe sailing adventures.

Debbie Purser - Career Path

I dropped out of university and paid to sail on the schooner Sir Winston Churchill. Recommended as a voluntary watch leader. Warned not to become a 'sailing bum' so went back to get my degree. Started to sail regularly on tall ships and Royal Navy patrol boats in my university vacations. Paid to sail with Ocean Youth Club. Recommended as voluntary bosun. Worked my way up from trainee mate to second mate with OYC and other sail training charities. Notched up over 35 000 miles in my holidays whilst a student and later working for local government. At 30 gave up being a Landscape Architect and did a private Outdoor Leisure Management and watersports instructor course for 13 weeks.  Worked for two private outdoor centers as instructor for peanuts but learnt about running adventure holiday companies and customer care. Gained a 10 month apprenticeship with Ocean Youth Club as worked as 1st mate and trainee skipper on 72ft yachts - again for minimal wages but great experience and gained Yachtmaster Offshore.  Had a successful laser eye operation so my eyesight would be good enough for commercial skipper endorsement. Schemed and planned with Adam to create our own adventure sailing business and raised enough investment to buy pilot cutter Eve of St Mawes and created Classic Sailing in Cornwall.  Now been skipper on Eve for 16 seasons, and still keep my hand in on tall ships. Gained RYA cruising instructor and studied at Warsash Nautical College to gain my Officer of Watch Certificate of Competency for sail training ships up to 3000 ton. Now ironically finding it hard to develop a growing business and go to sea. Regrets - turning down a 14 month round the world job on Picton Castle for wages less than my mortgage.....

Adam Purser - Career Path

Yacht sailor who sailed with Debbie on a tall ship in Scotland and life was never the same. Sold a successful Dolls House Business and set up a Tall Ships Information Service (before the internet existed).  Had an ambition to become a tall ship captain and sailed on Sorlandet, Khersones, and worked on the schooner Malcolm Miller as bosun before taking a job on the ill fated Maria Assumpta which was shipwrecked off Padstow. A changed man but not defeated, Adam chose to gain proper Merchant Navy qualifications.  Sidetracked by Debbie and we started to make plans for our own sailing business, to fill a gap in the market for traditional sailing on tall ships for adults.  Bought a 'ship with bowsprit and blocks and tackles' but a bit smaller than original grand ambitions.  RYA Yachtmaster Instructor and Principal of Eves School of Sailing. Built up Classic Sailing to a fleet of 15 vessels working all over the world. No regrets yet....apart from that tall ship captain dream.

16 Years and Still Going Strong

Eve is now in her 16th sailing season and we still believe that Eve makes Classic Sailing special. We  both continue to sail her, not as much as we used to but still an enjoyable amount of time.

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