Activity diversification

Your questions answered by Gallagher

two young people paddleboarding with safety equipment  

With growing numbers of clubs diversifying and offering a more extensive range of activities for members, it is essential that their insurance programme provides sufficient cover

Official Commercial Insurance Partner Gallagher arranges cover for 85%* of RYA affiliated clubs and RYA insurance scheme expert Ben Bennett has commented that a growing number of clubs have made contact in the last 12 months to ensure that they continue to meet the conditions of their respective insurer.

Ben has the following answers and recommends that all clubs spend time necessary to fully evaluate their respective insurance policy to ensure that all activities are being offered with the consent and authority of insurers, with any conditions/requirements being adhered to at all times:

Q. Do clubs need to notify their insurers of any changes to ‘core’ club activities (even if only on a trial or pilot period) or indeed if they are simply allowing Members to merely participate in a diverse range of activities, on club premises?

A. Yes, certainly. We would recommend that any activity being organised and/or hosted by the club which have not previously been disclosed to your insurer, is discussed with your provider. We at Gallagher have received regular enquiries of this nature over the last 12-18 months and have always been able to provide our clients with a positive response. On the basis that the activity being undertaken is within the regulated operating procedures/guidelines of the appropriate National Governing Body (NGB), where appropriate and with suitable risk assessments having been carried out - our scheme insurers have been happy to extend cover without imposing any additional terms.

Q. From an insurance perspective, are clubs restricted to offering these activities within their normal geographic ‘operating areas’ or will cover extend further afield?

A. Whilst we would recommend that clubs check the situation with their provider, Gallagher’s policy automatically extends to allow agreed activities to be undertaken anywhere within the inland and coastal waters of the United Kingdom.

Q. Where clubs have seen an influx of new Members as a result of diversification into additional activity, will it affect their premium?

A. Possibly yes. At Gallagher, we underwrite our Public Liability cover based on declared annual Membership numbers. Each policy is viewed on a ‘case by case’ basis and an increase in overall Membership numbers could lead to an increase in premium – simply to reflect the increase in activities/risk exposure. Other providers will apply a similar rationale and we would recommend that this is discussed with your insurance provider.

Q. Do clubs need any quality mark to evidence their proactive approach to managing risk in respect of any additional activities?

A. clubs are always recommended to ensure that full risk assessments are compiled and ratified in respect of each additional activity undertaken and in line with the appropriate guidelines of the NGB (where appropriate). Importantly, clubs should take care to ensure that any additional activity can be undertaken safely and securely within the facilities available to Clubs and not to the detriment of others. Gallagher policyholders are asked to ensure that appropriate documents are in place and, if in any doubt, suggest that the risk assessment is referred to Gallagher for review/comment, prior to the activity taking place.

Q. Are clubs required to affiliate to the appropriate NGB in respect of additional activities undertaken?

A. Whilst we cannot of course speak for all insurers and we strongly recommend that clubs speak to their providers, Gallagher RYA scheme insurers would certainly view affiliation to the relevant NGB as a prudent step. That said, they would not view this as being essential, providing that the guidelines and regulations of the NGB are adhered to at all times when engaging in the activity in question.

Q. Do clubs need insurance in place for these activities, even if a third party organisation is delivering the activity?

A. Yes, very possibly. If the club is deemed to be the ‘organiser’ of the activity and opts to bring in ‘outside help’ to deliver non-RYA activities, they should always check to ensure that the third party has their own Public Liability Insurance in place. Even if they do, the club could find themselves involved from a legal perspective, in the event of an incident, following which a claim arises.

It is important to also be aware however that any freelance instructor engaging in RYA tuition on behalf of an recognised training centre, should always be covered under the organising recognised training centres own insurance policy and not be required to carry their own insurance cover. This is something which the Gallagher policy provides as standard, however it is important that clubs/recognised training centres ensure that suitable cover is in place and speak to their insurance provider.   



For further questions or advice regarding insurance, contact the specialist RYA Gallagher Team.

Information last updated February 2024

*Based on live policies 1 June 23 – 31 December 23

These are brief product descriptions only. Please refer to the policy documentation paying particular attention to the terms and conditions, exclusions, warranties, subjectivities, excesses and any endorsements.

Royal Yachting Association is an Introducer Appointed Representative of Arthur J. Gallagher Insurance Brokers Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered Office: Spectrum Building 7th Floor, 55 Blythswood Street, Glasgow, G2 7AT. Registered in Scotland. Company Number: SC108909. AR12-2023. Exp. 01.02.2025