A beautiful simple flower that grew amok in John and Judie’s garden gave inspiration for the name of the new venture.

The location had surrounded and exhilarated them for years as they sailed “Allegro” their treasured 24 foot Hurley yacht, exploring the calm tranquil yet sometimes tempestuous waters of England’s largest natural lake, “Windermere”.

They revelled every weekend absorbing the unspoiled breathtaking scenery, wildlife and fresh hillside air. After a sharp increase in mooring fees, to maintain these special breaks aboard at the end of a hard weeks work a little extra cash was needed. Judie’s birthday gave them a germ of an idea.

Their two teenage sons took it upon themselves to prepare a gourmet meal aboard. After a thoroughly special time and darn fine food and drink they really appreciated the combination of a tranquil evening with 360 degree panoramic views, good cuisine and the family there to enjoy it with. Oh! And a few bottles of wine too and so Sail 'n' Dine was created.

Demand increased in the two years that followed and they updated “Allegro” for two Trapper yachts slightly larger and more accommodating. They also made the tough (?) decision to quit working at the teaching and probation professions. They sailed one boat each during the day, offering trips on the lake, corporate events and sailing tuition. In the evening they teamed together to offer their “jewel in the crown” the evening cruise, incorporating a tempting sail and equally tempting food and wines.

Things went from strength to strength and in 1998 after a visit to London’s boat show the two yachts were replaced with a brand new 34 foot luxurious Legend 340, “Excalibur”. Working together was certainly the way forward.

In 2003 John and Judie were lucky enough to be visited by the BBC holiday programme which was televised in February 2004 giving “Sail 'n' Dine” enormous nationwide credibility and kudos. It was repeated twice on “Ten of the best” in 2005 and 2006.

After 20 years of wonderful memories, hard work and many many friendships formed, John and Judie have retired and they now spend quality time exploring the inland waterways of England by narrow boat.

But “Sail 'n' Dine” continues......