Seas Your Future (SYF) is the operating name of Adventure Under Sail (AUS), a UK-registered not for profit company (number 06569266) limited by guarantee, and charity (number 1124276) registered with the Charity Commission for England and Wales.

AUS was formed in 2008 initially as a small charity managing funds to provide bursaries for young people undertaking sail related activities, and in 2012 took ownership of the tall ship Pelican of London. Its principle strategic aims, as set out in its Memorandum & Articles of Association, are:

“....to educate young people, through the provision of sailing or sailing related activities and other training and so as to develop their physical, mental, and social capabilities so that they may grow to full maturity as individuals and members of society and their conditions of life may be improved”.

In 2022, the charity acquired their second tall ship, the Fridtjof Nansen, to accommodate the increasing demand for voyages. 

The charity operates the ships primarily as sail training vessels for young people, in the northern hemisphere during the spring and summer months mainly around the UK and Europe, and during the autumn and winter months on a six-month transatlantic educational voyage. We provide sailing experience and an alternative form of learning for all young people, encouraging equality, inclusiveness, and passion, through adventure and challenge. Our programmes promote personal growth through Sail Training, Maritime Career options and offer hands-on Ocean Science and environmental conservation activities. See our Strategic Development Plan here.

Seas Your Future has seven employees and ten trustees. All employees work remotely. Crew are recruited via Viking Crew, the leading specialist maritime crew services provider, and are employed on the ship on a rotational basis, from a cohort of experienced sailors. The charity’s office is at Sharpness Shipyard and Drydock in Gloucestershire, UK.

Adrian Ragbourne
Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
Adrian has been our Chief Executive since 2016, during which time he has led the charity through significant change, developing our successful partnerships with Sail Training Ireland, Ocean College and others, all of which has resulted in Pelican now sailing for 46-48 weeks a year. Adrian came to us with 25 years experience as a manager in the corporate sector of which 15 were international, and 8 years as a manager in the charity sector. He also has 25 years' experience as a school governor and Academy trustee.

Lucy Grodie
Operations Manager
Lucy is a through and through Sail Trainer: first sailing in Tall Ships Races when she was 18 and has not left the sector since! Most recently Lucy played a key role in the management of ASTO, the umbrella body for UK Sail Training of which SYF is a well respected member. Lucy worked for around 10 years on board small commercial vessels. Apart from being qualified for smaller vessels she has sailed as crew or supernumerary on several square rigged ships. Lucy has a degree in Oceanography and is also a dual German/British national.

Simon Thorrington
Development and Partnerships Manager
Simon has 15 years’ experience in commercial banking and 30 years in the charity sector, bringing financial acumen and considerable charity and project management experience to Seas Your Future. He has served or worked as both a trustee and manager of several charities, including working for 15 years for Charity Bank, an innovative Social Investor. He was a trustee of Seas Your Future for 8 years.

Captain Ben Wheatley
Technical Engineering Manager and Relief Master
Ben became involved in sail training as a teenager when he had the opportunity to undertake several voyages as a trainee. This led to time spent as a volunteer crewmember and eventually to paid work in sail training vessels after completing his full-time education. For over twenty years, Ben has sailed in vessels from 11 tonnes to 600 tonnes delivering sail training voyages; since 2013 this has been as Skipper or Master. Ben was full-time Master of Pelican from 2019 to 2023 and is now working for SYF from shore, providing technical support to the crew whilst also developing the vessel's maintenance programme.

Dr Charlotte Braungardt
Head of Science 
Charlotte (Charly) is an engineer and environmental scientist with more than 20 years of experience as academic in higher education. As freelance consultant at Challenging Habitat, she shares her curiosity and insights, through environmental science research, outreach, communication and education.

Yasmin Deter
Marketing & Communications Coordinator and Degree Apprentice
Yasmin (Min) is our Marketing and Communications Co-ordinator and Degree Apprentice. She studies a Chartered Management BSc, at the University of Kent, alongside working for us. Min was our intern onboard Pelican for five weeks during the summer, mainly focusing on social media, and now she’s in charge of everything marketing for Seas Your Future.

Ula Mitrega
Operations Coordinator
Ula is our Operations Coordinator. With a creative background, an interest in the charity sector and a passion for the sea, Ula supports the management of onshore operations at Seas Your Future

John Dover
Chair of Trustees
John is a retired Senior Aerospace HR Executive now working in the charitable sector. He has over 40 years aerospace business experience now followed by 15 years working as a trustee in the charitable sector across community sports trusts, museums and now since 2018 with Seas Your Future.

Jane Nicklen
Trained as a lawyer in Nottingham. Specialist in strategic planning,  community rights & regeneration. 37 years working for the public sector in South Yorkshire, Aberdeen & Dorset. Volunteer experience includes School Governor, Teenage Cancer Trust, Aberdeen Childrens' Panel, West Dorset Diabetes UK, NHS Dorset & Weymouth College Corporation. Now very proud to be a trustee of Seas Your Future making a positive difference to the lives of young people!

Patrick Hoverstadt:
Patrick (Paddy) learnt to sail when he was 6 and has been sailing tall ships for almost 20 years. In ‘real life’ he’s a strategy and organisation design consultant working across sectors in 23 countries, does occasional work lecturing in a number of universities and has written several books on systems theory and management science. He also chairs two social enterprises – one a professional body and the other a professional qualification awarding body. Before that he was a blacksmith.

Simon Wiliams MBE
Simon is a Planning & Regeneration consultant & fundraiser and has been a trustee of the Chesil Sailing Trust. He was also Head of the Dorset Local Operations, for the London 2012, Olympic & Paralympic Sailing Events held in Weymouth & Portland.

Nick Lambert
A master mariner and a committed proponent of the maritime users’ perspective, Rear Admiral Nick Lambert concluded a long naval operational career as the UK National Hydrographer in December 2012. He advises on a wide range of maritime issues including the growing potential of the blue economy concept, the importance of spatial data infrastructures and hydrography for maritime economies, the evolution of eNavigation and GNSS vulnerability, near or real time situational awareness (especially that derived from space based assets and applications), maritime connectivity and cyber security, human factors, and training and education in the maritime sector. He has a particular interest in the Polar Regions and is also engaged in a variety of situational awareness, fisheries and aquaculture management, marine autonomous systems and vessel efficiency projects.

Paul Naranjo-Shepherd:
Paul is a Master Mariner, with over 15 years’ experience in the maritime industry. He has served on a variety of vessel types, from cruise ships to research vessels and tall ships to superyachts, and is passionate about the maritime industry, sail training and ocean science. Additionally, he brings business management and training skills to the charity, having run two of his own businesses since 2017.

Craig Sheffield:
Craig has been in corporate finance for over 30 years, building an amazing, wealth of international, hands-on experience of both leading and partnering with some exceptional talent. His whole career has been within the fast-moving tech sector. As a postgraduate he joined Motorola for 5 years, while studying for his professional accountancy qualification. Eventually, he was luck to work for Microsoft in the UK and then he and his family relocated to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. After they all returned to the UK, he joined a family-owned German financial technology services and consultancy firm where he stayed for another 7 years. Then in 2020, he joined his current firm Aristocrat, a global gaming company. Along with Badminton, one of his major passions is for sailing, and he has very recently passed the intensive RYA Yacht Master Coastal qualification; but not on a square rigger, on a much smaller 33’ sloop rig yacht.

Karen Heenan
A transatlantic voyage on a tall ship after university was Karen's first experience of sailing. She has since qualified as a lawyer in civil and commercial litigation and went on to spend the majority of her career in the voluntary sector, including with two youth development charities. She is now a mediator and chair of professional regulatory hearings.

Kevin Fleming:
A physicist and highly experienced naval aviator with over a third of a century in the Royal Navy where he deployed to many of the world’s seas and oceans, Kevin now enjoys a portfolio career in both the commercial and voluntary sectors. He is a Maritime Situational Awareness & International Engagement expert engaging worldwide; he concentrates on maximising the benefits of fused any-source data to increase understanding to deliver improved evidence-based decision making and policy. He also facilitates strategic leadership development for senior NHS staff and is a Visiting Senior Research Fellow at King’s College London. In the voluntary sector he is a Parish Councillor, a trustee of his local village hall and is becoming a more active member of the local community heritage group.

Roy Jarvis:
Roy is a youth worker and teacher. He has over 30 years’ experience of using outdoor education as a vehicle for personal development with young people. He is also an ex professional yachtsman and has crewed aboard numerous vessels including as Bosun aboard ‘Sea Cloud’, one of the world's biggest square-rigged ships. He has logged around 150,000 Ocean miles. Roy has done research around the benefits of sail training with young offenders and has a keen interest in different cultural perceptions of shipboard life and the assimilation of different cultural groups into ship routines. He is also passionate about the sea and traditionally rigged sailing vessels and has a strong interest in ocean science and the blue economy and the impact of containerisation as a driver of globalisation. Roy has his own model of team development and situation leadership which was developed through his expedition work with young people. This was published by the Institute of Outdoor Learning.

Development plan

Our 2020 Development Plan outlines our aims and objectives for the next few years.

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Gallery and Videos

Crew and students share experiences with you on their Seas Your Future voyages with College Partners and Darwin200.

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Join Our Team

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Seas Your Future is the operating name of Adventure Under Sail,
Charity 1124276, VAT 174919961.

For more information contact:

T: +44 (0) 1305 839835
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