Scuba Review / Tune Up For £29.99

PADI Scuba Review / Tune Up for £29.99? Are you mad?

We have 4 last minute cancellations for this coming Wednesday.

This has left us with 4 places on the scuba review course which we can no offer at the amazing price of £29.99 (RRP £45) including manual.

This offer is valid for the 19th September only and will require you to complete the Scuba Review booklet prior to attending the evening.

So, if you need a scuba review, can get to the dive centre to pick up the book and complete before the 19th then grab your self a bargain!

Discover Scuba Diving £9.99!

Want to try scuba for less that £10?

We have a great promotion for Wednesday the 26th of September.

For this evening only we will be running Discover Scuba Sessions for the amazing price of £9.99 (RRP £25).

We have 10 places on offer so first come, first served.

Call the dive centre on 01189761729 or email us at info@divestyle.co.uk to book a place.

HMS Victoria, An Expedition To Far?

An Expedition To Far?

The weather outside was rubbish; the days were long and wintry. It was still 3 months until the dive season kicked off and allow the weather to lend itself to getting divers back out to the ocean once more.

It was on this fateful evening, after our weekly training sessions had finished, the dive team all sat in our favorite pub to enjoy a well-deserved pint and a crouch next to the roaring fire.

As we all gathered around the open fire the chatter started, the excitement of the evenings training and the thoughts of the season to come. What did we all have in mind for the up and coming season?

There were trips planned to Scapa, Weymouth, Swanage, Farnes, Lundy and the Red Sea. Then the suggestions turned to wistful and far flung destinations such as Bali, Galapagos and the Cocoas.

It was then that one of the instructors asked. “If you could dive anywhere you wanted, where would it be?”

As I listened to the silence of thought, I felt myself drifting back to the first time I watched the ‘Silent Ocean’ by Jacque Cousteau. The memories are vivid, as if I was that young boy still staring at the TV, mouth wide open, eyes like saucers.

I can still remember thinking, “how did they do that?”, “what is that on their back?”

Mind you looking back their methods of species collection of both fish and coral where someone dubious!

The excitement that I felt as they explored the Thistlegorm for the very first time. Sent shivers down my spin.

And that got my little grey cells thinking, what or where would I like to dive? I ran through the typical destinations such as Cocoas, Galapagos, HMS Britannic and even the Arctic, but none really got my juices flowing and that chill of excitement to run down my spin. I wanted that anticipation I felt as a little boy watching the TV, surly there must be a destination out there?

As I drove home that night my mind was running wild with ideas, the list of possible destinations started to grow. I wanted something different, something challenging and something that few others had done. I wanted something that would require real planning, not only dive planning but real effort just to get there.

Before I new it I was home. With my mind still running through possible idea’s I popped the kettle on and jump on the Internet and had a list of 5 possibles in less than an hour.

Just before my eyelids gave up the ghost I fired an email to Alan Whitehead at Divewise / Techwise.

“Alan, thinking of an expedition. Are you up for it? If so what where would you fancy?”

With the email sent and my mind now just as tired it was time for bed, well actually I fell asleep on the settee. I did what no person should do and flicked on the sky box, only to find The Deep was playing, Classic!.

The next morning I checked my email and as always there was an email waiting for me from Alan.

“Expedition sounds great, myself and Paul Toomer are very interested. Have you thought about the HMS Victoria?”

HMS Victoria? I had never hear of that wreck, HMS Victory yes, but not the Victoria?

I read the mail again to make sure that I had not miss read it, Yep it was the HMS Victoria. Then I suddenly clicked that not only did I have a possible destination for an expedition but the start of a dive dream team!!!!

HMS Victoria, right, lets find out all we can about the old girl then. I began the search and it was not long before the story of the HMS Victoria started to piece together.

What I did find is that the information on HMS Victoria is not that well published. Wiki has, as always some great information but it did not really tell you exactly what had happened. It did not give you an insight into the crew or the man who captained the vessel.

It was not until I found a book called ‘Admirals In Collision’ by Richard Hough. As I read the book the story of the HMS Victory came to life. The men, the circumstances leading up to her sinking and the man who took her to het final watery resting place.

The more I read about HMS Victoria the more the excitement grew and the more I felt like that little boy again. My imagination started to run wild, the chill down the spine kicked in and I was opened mouthed and wide eyed once again. I new this was the one.

The more I dug the more I found. Videos on YouTube, articles run in the Guardian, Stories telling of divers who had been there and treasures that had ben discovered, yes treasures!. One diver had even reported finding the sword of Nelson, one of many Nelson treasures supposedly carried on the HMS Victoria by Admiral Tyron.

Now, don’t think this is a just a quick strap of a cylinder to your back and of you pop. This is not one of your typical recreational diving sites.

This is a full blown technical dive that would require good training, good skills and use of the best diving gear on the market. Perfect, not only did i have a dive site but an excuse to buy new shinny diving gear, get in!

Her stern is only 70 meters from the surface; a deep technical dive but a depth that is common place, these days within the technical diving community. Easy you might say, not much of an expedition to be had there.

Here the HMS Victoria comes gives up one of her unique secret. She is only 70 Meters  from the surface but that is only her stern, her bow is driven into the seabed and that bottom out at 147 meters!

I was straight back on the phone to Alan, this is the one! We both agreed that we wanted to try and make this an expedition where well trained divers would have the opportunity to get involved. They would not have to be full technical divers now as we wanted to put in place a structured training schedule that would provide the opportunity for divers with suitable skills and potential to work towards being part of the dive team, after all an expedition relies on many different individual functioning in key positions.

So now the real planning begins.

Our next meeting will happen on the 9th of September, In Malta, where the story of the HMS Victoria really started to take shape. This will be our first opportunity to start the formulation of the training program, travel plans, communication plans and prepare ourselves for the endless calls that we ill be required to the embassy’s in both the UK and Lebanon.

We are a long way off but the thirst to make this one happen is deep. One way or another I intend to dive that wreck!

HMS Victoria. The Birth & Death

The sinking of the HMS Victoria

Vice-Admiral Sir George Tyron, K.C.B

It is said that war is 9 tenths boredom and 1 tenth hell.

‘It was only the overpowering personality of the man and the confidence he inspired that induced Admiral Markham to carry out an order that was on the face of it insecure’

Admiral of the Fleet Sir Arthur Knyvet Wilson, Bart.

‘His Brain must have failed’

Admiral Sir Reginald Bacon

Rear-Admiral Albert Hastings Markham

‘It is very clear that the Rear –Admiral did not understand the signal…. and went blindly into the danger zone’

Admiral Sir Charles Dundas of Dundas

‘If I were Markham…I never could hold up my head again’

Admiral of the Fleet Lord Fisher Kilverstone

What had these men done that resulted is such reattribute by their fellow colleagues?

What heinous crime had they committed that questioned the sanity of senior officers in the British Navy?

On Good Friday, April the 13th, 1893 the flagship of the Mediterranean fleet was re-commissioned at Malta.

Amongst the ironclads was HMS Victoria, the flagship of the fleet commanded by Vice-Admiral Sir George Tyron and the Campertown, to be captained by Rear-Admiral Albert Hastings Wareham.

HMS Victoria was a marvel of her time.

On June the 16th after both Tyron and Wareham had suffered bouts of Malta fever the fleet set sail for Beirut.

At quarter to ten on the 22nd of June 1893 the fleet weighed anchor at shores of Beirut and proceeded to sea. As had become typical of Tyron the departure did not follow any orthodox naval movement but that of a movement spawned by the mind of Tryon. By 10:30 they were well at sea and the destination in Tyron’s sights was to be Tripoli.

Tripoli was to be the final resting place of the HMS Victoria. The sinking of the flash ship, nicknamed the slipper would be nothing more than a training exercise gone wrong.

Had Tyron lost his mind due to the Malta fever?
Did Wareham deliberately ignore orders due to his dislike of Tyron?

What is know is that a set of orders, given by Tyron put the Campertown and the HMS Victoria is an extremely dangerous situation, one that resulted in the sinking of the HMS Victoria.

The Campertown struck the HMS Victoria on the starboard side, slicing into the hull with little to no resistance.

The angle and position at which the Campertown hit the HMS Victoria was devastating. Immediately the HMS Victoria’s bow plunged into the ocean and never returned about the surface.

In less than 15 minutes the HMS Victoria was below the waves, her spinning props driving her bow first towards the seabed.

With props still spinning at full speed the HMS Victoria sank beneath the waves.

HMS Victoria struck the seabed, her bow thrust deep into the seabed by the force of the still spinning props.

There she sat in silence, her bow driven into the seabed, leaving the HMS Victoria a silent reminder of one mans mistake.

The HMS Victoria lay unreachable and undisturbed for over 100 years. Standing upright, bow in the seabed and stern pointing to the surface at perfect 90 degree’s.

Rubber! Rubber! Rubber!

OK, it’s not rubber but just as sexy! 

We have the following great deals on neoprene. Offer ends September 30th 2012

  • Oceanic Pioneer Semi Dry 15% Discount
  • O’Neill 5mm full length 15% Discount
  • Hollis 7mm Semi Dry 15% Discount
  • Typhoon Titanium Shorty 15% Discount
  • 4th Element Hoods & Gloves 10% Discount

Fiona Is Leaving DiveStyle

Fiona Taylor is leaving DiveStyle after 5 years.

Fiona is taking the big step and had secured herself a place at university.

She has ben with DiveStyle for the last five years and has grown from strength to strength. She has become an integral part of DiveStyle and has made my life so much easier.

For a young lady she has a very mature head on her shoulders and will do brilliant in any field that she chooses.

We will all be out in Reading on Friday the 31st for drinks to celebrate Fiona’s last day and you are all welcome to join us.

Full details can be found on facebook or by dropping Fiona a mail at info@divestyle.co.uk

We will all miss her once she has gone.

Making Scuba Diving More Affordable.

We have combined some great offers with the open water referral and full open water course options.

Include a dive computer as part of your open water referral or open water course for as little as £159.00.

Take advantage of a 50% discount on your drysuit course when booking your Open Water Course.

Save 15% off the advanced open water course if book as a bundle with your open water course.

Get a 55% discount on a 12 month subscription to Sport Diver if bundled with your open water course.

 

 

Fan Of London Irish? Fancy Winning A £50 Voucher?

DiveStyle is coming to the Madejski stadium with the London Irish.

Within the next 3 weeks DiveStyle will start and fantastic new and exciting advertising campaign at the Madejski stadium at all of the London Irish games.

We will have 6 x 10 second adverts pre match, during a match and post match!

So how do you earn a £50 voucher to spend in the dive centre?

It’s easy! Visit the stadium when London Irish are playing, get a snap of you with the DiveStyle advert in the background and send it to jc@divestyle.co.uk, you will then be put into our fortnightly draw throughout the season.

If you are picked as a winner then you will be automatically entered into the prize draw to win London Irish game tickets for the next available match.

August Drysuit Discounts – Up To 30%!

Fancy up to 30% discount on any drysuit we have in stock? Offer ends 31st August 2012.

Until the end of August we have an amazing offer on all drysuits in stock.

A drysuit is a UK diving essential and we are here to try and make it as affordable as possible.

We are offering a 30% discount on all in-store drysuits and 25% discount on any drysuit that you order.

Dry suits whether neoprene or membrane allow divers to remain warm both underwater and on the surface by trapping a layer of air around them, these drysuits from Oceanic, Typhoon, Whites and Scubapro are some of the best in the scuba diving equipment market.

This offer is not available online. To take advantage call us on 01189 761729, drop us an email to info@divestyle.co.uk or come and see us in the dive centre

Red Sea Holiday – St John’s. 31st October – 7th November

DiveStyle are on the move again! 31st October – 7th November

We are back out to Egypt on the fantastic St John’s reef tour of the deep south.

October 31st – 7th November 2012 – £1125.00 – Inc Flights and FREE Nitrox (please add 2.5% if paying by credit card and £15 to cover Egyptian visa)

£250 deposit required to secure you place.

Boat: Gran Sea Serpent 

Average Water Temp: 19 – 28 C 
Average Air Temp:
 19 – 35 C 
Average Visability:
 15 – 25m 
Good for:
 Reefs and Very Big Fish! Also some fantastic wrecks. 
Suitable for beginners:
 Yes

Complete your advanced open water on holiday for £199, complete your deep or wreck diver speciality for £99.

Everyone is encouraged to bring along a suitable pirate outfit. There will be a prize for the best pirate costume!

Description 
St Johns is a large reef system right at the end of the Egyptian Red Sea and all time favourite with scuba divers. Lying a hairs width above the Sudanese border, a trip St Johns is a trip to the very edges – and back again. Not content to only offer up the awesome diving of the deep south, this itinerary packs in more, stopping at the stunning reef systems of Fury Shoal and Wadi Gamal. This itinerary truly is the best way to see the Southern Red Sea in its all its glory, on a single liveaboard holiday far from the crowds.

After the check dive, Shaab Sharm is the ideal southerly stopping point on the way down to St Johns. A large oval reef with walls and colourful plateau, Shaab Sharm is an excellent dive day or night. After sailing overnight, you will wake up in the heart of St Johns. The entire region is filled with every kind of marine life, from the smallest nudibranch’s to the largest. Bumphead parrot fish, baby white tips, barracuda and napoleons comb the deep south, whereas snapper, hawk fish, batfish and morays roam the more northern stop offs. Flat worms, nudibranch’s and cleaning stations give ample reason to smile especially for the macro fiends amongst us. In between dives, keep an eye on the horizon as dolphin pods move between the reef systems on the hunt for a tasty snack… or some bow waves to ride. Diving the habillis is the order of the day. These submerged reefs are simply sumptuous wall dives where gentle currents, great gorgonians and soft corals abound. Lazy afternoons at Gota Kebir, Gota Soraya, Abu Basala or Dangerous reef make time for dives around pristine pinnacles and plateaus. St Johns cave to the north makes for a memorable dive. Here shallow cracks in the reef plate open into caverns and overhangs. Fury Shoal is famous for her hard corals – do not miss Shaab Claudia, Malahi or Abu Galawa Soraya. These ancient structures are as bright as they impressive. Shiriniat in Wadi Gamal is a must see stop off on the way back north for a lighthearted drift Final dives in the Marsa Alam region closes a spectacular week of unparalleled reef diving.

The St Johns itinerary is perfect for every diver, no matter what experience level. The diving is straight forward so you can concentrate more on the mind blowing marine life in this veritable underwater aquarium. Diving takes place both from the boat and RIB. With walls, pinnacles, caves, night diving over the whole week, the St Johns itinerary is packed with the dives that everyone can enjoy. Currents tend to mild and minimal. Every diver on the St Johns itinerary faces the same impossible task – to decide which is the star of this show. The reef life is breathtaking and everywhere you look there is yet another fishy spot for the log book. Yet the pristine and healthy corrals are as much a super star on this itinerary. See for yourself just why the Southern Red Sea keeps people coming back for more year after year.

 

 

Need A Tune-Up? Full SCUBA MOT for £29.99

If you have not dived for a while or just want to brush up on your scuba skills then a PADI Tune-Up is just the ticket!

We will be running PADI Tune-Up courses on Wednesday the 22nd August for just £29.99 (SRP £45).

If you have not been diving for a while or just want to have your skills reviewed by and experienced instructor, then this is the course for you.

For full details click here

This offer is not available through our online shop. To book a place please call us on 01189 761729, email us at info@divestyle.co.uk or pop into the dive centre.