Haslar Yacht Club aim to bring together sailors who use the numerous marinas in the Hasler and Gosport area of Hampshire. They are open to all boat owners regardless of whether their interest is sail or power and also aim to encourage people who have never stepped on the water to take an interest. Established in 2010 mainly internet based apart from a meet up on the on the second Thursday of the month in the Mary Mouse 2 Lightship pub/restaurant in Haslar Marina, Gosport.
Within the club there are many members who’d joined to meet new people who would like to go sailing as a group, as their boats were larger and required more people to sail and moor up at the end of the day. Whilst larger boats are getting more manageable at sea, they are still problematic to berth if you are shorthanded. It was identified that training could help members learn new techniques to aid them come alongside and handle their boats more easily in marina situations and give greater confidence to the skippers and crews. The new club had already established links with two local RYA training centres. It was decided to approach the centres to provide specific training on boat handling in a marina for sailing cruisers and motorboats.
Nine skippers wanted to take part, consisting of six sailboat and three motor cruising skippers. A one-day format was agreed, and two instructors hired in, one for a full day on the sailboats, the other for a half day on the motorboats. The training was to be based on the individuals’ personal boat. The instructors held an initial briefing to all in their specific group and then jumped from boat to boat, spending about an hour with each person 1:1. The motorboat session, with only three skippers, would start at 9am and finish at lunchtime. Two sailboat sessions were run, one until lunchtime, with a group of three, then the other group starting in the afternoon. This also allowed the morning crew to go off and practice or just go boating after they had finished. To get the most out of the training opportunity, the three skippers attend a short briefing on boat handling conducted on one of the yachts and then stayed onboard whilst the instructor concentrated on teaching the owner of the yacht. After an hour of 1:1, they swapped onto another owners’ yacht and carried on. Therefore, everyone received an hour 1:1 and benefited from seeing the manoeuvres repeated as they crewed for the other skippers.
The daily rate for an instructor was £180 which was split equally amongst the participants. Therefore, a morning’ s specific boat handling tuition with a 1:3 ratio and an hour at 1:1 ratio cost each skipper £30.
The event was a great success, and more are in the pipeline. The skippers remarked that that they’re a lot more confident about what they can and cannot do with a boat and propose to use the boat more and visit trickier places. Discussions are also in place to find out other Club training requirements.