The boats will be available as club training boats, both for training sessions and for members to borrow for racing at WWSC and in other Harbour Clubs in a bid to appeal to members aged 13 to 18.   

Participation by teenage members of the club was declining, despite the fact that more than 60 younger children participate in summer events in a large fleet of Toppers and Lasers, the result of focussed efforts to develop a junior sailing programme over the past nine years.   Before the arrival of the new Fevas, WWSC had been unable to offer teenagers the opportunity to move up into bigger, more exciting, two-person boats. 

Anna Hardy of WWSC explained “We spoke to the RYA regional development officer who met us on site and discussed options for our future. The RYA really encouraged us and guided us through the process of applying for a grant,”   

“Retaining teenagers in any sport is always a challenge and we really see this in our club with a huge divide between the Junior Topper section and main club racing,” she added.  “We hope these boats will help to bridge that gap and help us to keep our teenagers on the water, having fun, learning new skills and competing.”   

As this is the first time the club has owned training boats, it also creates a wonderful opportunity for WWSC to encourage children from the local school to visit the club and ‘have a go’. 

“We plan to offer an open day later in the year and possibly work with West Wittering Primary School to create opportunities for young local children to experience sailing.  These club owned RS Fevas will make this possible for the first time”.   

This is an exciting time for WWSC.  Although a small, local club, limited by tidal waters and working within the fragile, natural environment off East Head, it is moving forward and looking to the future with the help of organisations such as Sport England and the RYA.