About Coast and Cairn


Robert Bashford                                        

Rob Bashford Sailing

Founder: Rob Bashford

Rob is the founder and chief instructor of Coast and Cairn. He has been sailing for 19 years and began instructing professionally in 2006. Rob has taught a wide variety of people at training centres across the UK and holds the following RYA qualifications:

  • Yachtmaster Coastal (commercially endorsed)
  • Advanced Powerboat (commercially endorsed)
  • Keelboat Instructor
  • Senior Dinghy Instructor
  • Powerboat Instructor
  • Shorebased Instructor
  • First Aid Instructor
  • SRC Instructor/Assessor

His personal sailing experience ranges from club dinghy sailing to offshore yacht racing, including the notorious Fastnet Race. Rob is also a volunteer crew member and the Training Coordinator at the local inshore lifeboat, RNLI Kessock, as well as a member of the RNLI National Flood Rescue team.

Rob instructs in a number of land-based outdoor activities and has led overseas expeditions. He is a Mountain Leader, qualifying him to lead walking groups in the mountainous areas of the UK and he has been teaching navigation skills for a number of years. For 10 years, Rob was proud to work for Woodlore, the country’s premier school of wilderness bushcraft, founded by bushcraft expert Ray Mears.


Sailing in the Moray Firth

Our boat: Lysbeth

Our boat, Lysbeth, is an Achilles 24 yacht. She is a Bermudan masthead sloop and measures 24’ (8m) in length. Derived from the Ajax keelboat, these small yachts have a good turn of speed and more responsive handling than a larger yacht.

Despite their small size, these boats have an impressive offshore pedigree, with several having crossed the Atlantic and one even getting as far as New Zealand. These attributes of seaworthiness and ease of handling make her a great boat on which to learn to sail and ideally suited to the courses and trips we deliver.

The boat carries all the necessary safety equipment for coastal cruising, including a liferaft and has been inspected and licensed by the Highland Council to carry 3 passengers, plus a skipper. She has also been inspected and recognised by the RYA as suitable to deliver training courses. In addition, we are an accredited operator under the WiSE (Wildlife Safe) scheme, the UK standard for marine wildlife watching.

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