Practical advice for all sailors. Tom Cunliffe has sailed tens of thousands of miles all over the world and has been a Yachtmaster Examiner since 1978

As yachts proliferate, we are asked more and more to raft up. We all take so much care over our lines and fenders that it’s easy to forget the oldest advice of all. Look aloft! If the spreaders are alongside a neighbour’s, shunt the boat forward or aft a few feet. The situation may look innocuous now, but when Pedro the Fisherman roars by at 0500 dragging half the harbour behind him for a wake, the yachts can sometimes shake hands via their spreaders. Urgh!