Janet Harber went afloat from a very young age, starting on her father’s cruising boats. In the 1950s her father, Jack Coote, wrote a series of articles on various East Coast rivers for Yachting Monthly magazine, which were soon published in book form – in the first edition of this cruising companion. During this time Janet and her sister Judy spent their childhood weekends and summer holidays exploring the rivers and creeks of the Thames Estuary in the family boat Iwunda, helping with the research for East Coast Rivers.
As a teenager she sailed with Ocean Youth Club, and, after training as a photographer, lived and worked in London where she raced Merlin Rockets on the Thames at Ranelagh Sailing Club in Putney.
While working at Yachts & Yachting magazine Janet kept her family’s Hunter Europa, followed by a lifting-keel Hunter 701 at Paglesham on the River Roach, and cruised the East Coast rivers in the summer holidays. She also crewed on Sonatas and Impalas and raced at Burnham and on The Solent. Janet shared a Twister and later a Dragon with her father, and in recent years she and her husband sailed a lifting-keel Fox Terrier on the River Ore.
Nowadays Janet sails on her sister’s lifting-keel Parker 325 based on the Deben and Orwell rivers