Events and activities away from own premises

Are you aware of the insurance implications? Ben Bennett from Gallagher Insurance answers your frequently asked questions.

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A growing number of clubs are running trips to other clubs or centres so their members get to experience a different sailing area. This type of event can be great fun, help to develop skills and allow for some good social activity around the sailing. However, it’s important to make sure that any activity is appropriately insured. Ben Bennett (RYA Account Manager, Gallagher) has provided some guidance and answered some frequently asked questions on this topic.

RYA affiliated club, recognised training centre & affiliated organisation Insurance broking partner Gallagher arranges cover for 85%¹ of RYA affiliated clubs and advise that clubs and centres should be aware of the need to consider and evaluate the risks of organising activity away from the usual facilities – often held at alternative RYA affiliated club or centre premises.

Firstly, we recommend that all RYA affiliated clubs and centres take time to evaluate their individual risk exposures – ensuring that they are adequately covered at all times. Please note that these Frequently Asked Questions are not a substitute for the policy wording, for full terms and conditions please see the policy documentation.

Q. Would clubs/groups be automatically covered for ‘activities away’ under their existing insurance arrangements? i.e. would cover such as public liability and insurance of the boats/equipment belonging to the ‘host venue’ and being used by others, be automatically covered?

A. Whilst we are unable to comment on the flexibility of any other policy, the Gallagher RYA endorsed policy does allow the hosting of events anywhere in the UK in respect of club/centre organised activity. The policy also permits transit of club/centre boats to third party sites where appropriate (subject to a standard maximum length limit of 30ft). That said, if you do opt to borrow/loan equipment from the venue, which you are being hosted by, it is advisable to ensure that either:

  1. Their policy extends to include use by others (you may find this is uncommon in today’s market).
  2. You contact your insurance providers and seek to extend your policy to cover such items on loan/borrowed – for the duration of your stay.

Q. Would a visiting club/group need to be members of the ‘host’ club, for the duration of their stay?

A. This is a common requirement for many clubs – some club rules dictate that at least ‘temporary’ membership should be granted, or very often to allow full use of ‘host’ club equipment and to comply with insurance requirements of the ‘host’ club. Often this need not be each individual being granted ‘temporary’ membership, but the club/centre or group involved as one – permitting use of the facilities and equipment, as any other member would be entitled to do.

Q. Whose insurance would the sailing activity fall under the club/centre acting as the ‘host’, or that of the visiting club/group?

A. Essentially, this simply boils down to the level of ‘organisation’ on the part of the ‘host’ club/group. If the host venue is not the organiser of the activity then the liability sits with the visiting club or group. If the host is the organiser then the liability would be their responsibility and not with the visitors. Both parties should check their insurance policies to confirm.

Q. What if a club wants to take part in some different on the water activities? (stand-up paddle boarding, open water swimming, kayaking, etc.)?

A. Checks should be made with respective insurers – however I can advise that, on the basis that such activities will be run by suitably qualified and competent individuals, with the guidelines/regulations of the appropriate National Governing Body (NGB) followed at all times, the Gallagher policy would permit such additional watersports activity if they have been pre-agreed.

Q. What about other ‘land based’ activities appropriate for the location to which a club/group may be travelling – hill walking, for example?

A. We can only speak on behalf of Gallagher. Requests for additional ‘shore-based’ activity is common and on the understanding that the club/group adopt a sensible risk aware approach to managing the activity and utilise the skills of personnel within the organisation who has the appropriate skill/qualification and/or experience, this can usually be accommodated without any real issue. Naturally, you should liaise with your own insurance advisor/provider on subjects such as these, given that responses may vary from insurer to insurer.

For further questions or advice regarding insurance, contact the Gallagher Team by emailing or calling 0800 062 2309.

Or speak to the RYA Legal Team

¹Based on live policies between 31st March 22 – 1st April 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. FP1608-2022. Exp. 10/11/2023

Image taken at Queen Mary Sailing Club, credit Simon Winkley