Please select your home edition
Edition
Doyle Sails 2020 - Cruising Confidence 728x90 TOP

Peter Hunter passes away

by John Roberson 14 Sep 08:56 PDT

The world of sailing has lost one of its great characters. Hunter - the "Peter" or "PCC" are unnecessary prefixes, when people of a certain era in sailing refer to Hunter, we know exactly who they are talking about. A former world-class International 14, Finn and Dragon sailor from the amateur time of our sport, Hunter died at Newport on the Isle of Wight, 3rd September.

Sailing with Olympic Gold Medallist Stuart Morris he won the prestigious Prince of Wales Cup for International 14s, and sailed Olympic trials in the Finn and Dragon. He also served as Vice Commodore and Trustee of the Royal Thames Yacht Club, as Terrestrial Commodore of the tongue in cheek Imperial Poona Yacht Club and was an active member of the Royal Yacht Squadron and Seaview Yacht Club.

For Hunter sailing always had to be fun and as in all areas of his life, he was not impressed by people who take themselves too seriously. In one Finn race, at an important Olympic selection regatta on a particularly cold day, he was leading at the windward mark and whipped out a hip flask to self administer a large slug of scotch. The then Olympic manager of the Finn class was apoplectic with rage that his races weren't being taken seriously enough.

His view was that grass roots and club level sailing is the lifeblood of our sport and needs to be cared for and nurtured so that people coming into the sport stay in it. This, and his accounting background made him a valuable member of club committees. He was on the founding committee of Datchet Water Sailing Club before his long term service on various Royal Thames committees.

When remembering Hunter one is reminded of the lines from Rudyard Kiplings poem "If" -
"If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings—nor lose the common touch..."

Through his membership of Imperial Poona and the Royal Yacht Squadron he was on first name terms with the late Duke of Edinburgh, and yet was comfortable rubbing shoulders with locals at the bar of any pub. It was Hunter's humour, joie de vivre and huge personality that stood him out from the crowd. You could fill more volumes than the Encyclopedia Britannica with "Hunter stories", many of them he would happily tell against himself.

It was the Duke of Edinburgh who invited Hunter to become the Terrestrial Commodore of Imperial Poona, receiving a phone call claiming to be from Buckingham Palace he was about to reply, "and I'm the Queen of Sheeba", before realizing it was genuine. The club's mantra "life can be significantly improved by not taking it too seriously all the time," suited Hunter well.

No tribute to Hunter would be complete without mention of his late wife Jenny, who was the perfect foil to his larger than life character. They were a great and enduring double act and the world of sailing is a poorer place without them.

Related Articles

Jeremy Rogers MBE: 1937 - 2022
One of Britain's most successful yachtsmen passes away Jeremy Rogers, one of Britain's most successful yachtsmen, made a life out of sailing from an early age, from making model boats as a small child before making his mark in yacht racing. He was as skilled with his hands as he was at the helm of a boat. Posted on 18 Oct
Sam Richmond passes away
Remembrance Procession held at Antigua After being injured in training before the Superyacht Challenge Antigua, Sam Richmond has sadly passed away. Everyone involved with the regatta joins the worldwide sailing community in paying respects to a much-loved and highly respected sailor. Posted on 14 Mar
Laser designer, Bruce Kirby dies at 92 yrs
Bruce Kirby (92), best known as the designer of the Laser, now known as the ILCA, has passed away Bruce Kirby, best known as the designer of the Laser, now known as the ILCA, has passed away at the age of 92yrs. He was a three times Olympian in the Finn class, accomplished, self-taught designer from dinghies to 12 Metres, and a sailing journalist. Posted on 20 Jul 2021
8 Bells: Bob Fisher - Mr America's Cup
The larger-than-life yachtsman, journalist and author passes away at 85 Bob Fisher, the larger-than-life yachtsman, journalist and author crossed the bar peacefully on January 25 surrounded by family. He was 85. Posted on 26 Jan 2021
Simon 'Fumesy' Russell passes away
One of sailing's great characters has been taken from us by Covid One of sailing's great characters has been taken from us by Covid. Simon Russell, known by all as Fumesy, suddenly passed away on Tuesday. Posted on 6 Jan 2021
Vale Peter McEachern Campbell - 23.10.30 – 1.9.20
Yachting correspondent and commentator Peter Campbell, died in Hobart yesterday, aged 89 One of Australia's longest-serving sports writers, the yachting correspondent and commentator Peter Campbell, died in Hobart yesterday, aged 89. Posted on 2 Sep 2020
Wayne Penn Schafer passes away
An absolute evangelist of all things Hobie We have lost a true legend in the passing of beloved Hobie Cat Sailor and Icon Wayne Schafer. Wayne was one of Hobie Alter's biggest supporters and lifelong friends, and was an absolute evangelist of all things Hobie. Posted on 8 Jun 2020
Olaf Harken passes away
Co-creator of the hugely successful rope handling business which bears his name Olaf Harken and his older brother, Peter, created the hugely successful rope handling business that bears their name, by working hard, delivering excellence, and having fun every day. Posted on 22 Oct 2019
Mark "Wilko" Wilkinson passes away
Sailing and the marine industry lost a characterful and popular figure Sailing and the marine industry lost a characterful and popular figure with the unexpected passing of Mark "Wilko" Wilkinson on Sunday 28th July at his home in Warsash. It is believed from a heart attack. Posted on 7 Aug 2019
Remembering Lowell North
The founder of North Sails passes away Lowell North, founder of North Sails, has passed away. Nicknamed "The Pope" by his peers, Lowell began his sailmaking career at the age of 14 when his father purchased a Star with cotton sails. Posted on 4 Jun 2019
J Composites 2022 - J99 FOOTERCoast Guard Foundation FOOTER 1Hella Dual Colour Floodlights - 728 x 90px - 004 gif Bottom