Sailor, author, Geordie, erstwhile economist
Les Weatheritt was born in Newcastle upon Tyne and educated in local state schools. He took a first degree at the London School of Economics (LSE); a decade later he did a masters degree there; and roughly a decade after that he spent a year at the LSE as a visiting research academic.
After getting his BSc (econ) from the LSE he worked as a miner in Canada and as a deckhand in the Caribbean before returning to London to work briefly in industrial marketing and then for a decade as a research economist and policy advisor at the Greater London Council. When the GLC was abolished he made a living researching the central London property market and as an economic consultant mainly to local community groups. His last jobs were on regional development projects in Hungary and Poland, an arts-based project to lessen tensions in Ireland and an EU funded Peace Project in Israel. In retrospect, those last two were not wonderfully successful.
He came late to sailing, teaching himself how-to on an old 20 footer he bought in Essex in the 1970s. After sailing to the Caribbean in the mid 1990s he and his partner Gloria spent winters living aboard their ketch Petronella and sailing the island chain during the winter before returning to live and work on their narrow boat Utopia on the Kennet and Avon canal in the summer. They sailed Petronella back to Europe in 2005, now live ashore in Bath, sail Amelie, an elderly Amel Kirk, in southern Portugal and spend most Christmas and New Years with Gloria’s family in Trinidad.
He wrote his first sailing book, Your First Atlantic Crossing, because sailing is so life-enhancing that he wanted to encourage others to extend their range and experiences and make an ocean crossing of their own. His novel - Summer Storms - is a sort of sister to his second sailing handbook, Caribbean Passagemaking, written as a practical guide to an easier sailing experience and how to have much more fun when cruising the fabulous islands and waters of the Lesser Antilles. Summer Storms, as works of fiction often do, provides a more entertaining, true to life and easily digestible but highly informative guide to sailing in the Caribbean than any pilot book.