Ben's Buzz - August 2019


Where do I start!? I know Gareth's Gossip always provoked a lot of talking points so I hope my new Ben's Buzz can live up to the hype! With the summer in full swing, my first blog is probably a good chance to just highlight a few reminders and key dates coming up.

Keep your eye out for over the next couple of weeks as the full agenda is published and booking opens for the 2019 RYA Midlands Affiliated Clubs Conference.

I'm really looking forward to this, as not only will it be the first one I've been to (I ran a commercial centre!), but it will give me a chance to
meet as many of you as possible while mapping out what the next 12 months are going to look like. The conference is on Saturday, 16 November 2019 at Landau Forte Academy Amington, Tamworth in case you haven't got the date in your diary.

Also the countdown is on to get your RYA Affiliated Club Membership census back if you've not already. The deadline is 15 August, so if you're having any problems getting it back in time, please do email me. My contact details are here - RYA Midlands contacts.

Don't forget there's a Mark Laying Workshop at Staunton Harold SC on 8 September for anyone who wants to assist their club with the management of larger or open dinghy events, volunteer in a skilled role in major events locally, or follow the RYA Race Officials Mark Layer pathway. Spread the word amongst your members and they can sign up here - Midlands Mark Laying Workshop.

Not wanting to be the one who starts talking about next year (!) but the theme for the 2020 RYA Dinghy Show has been announced too - A World of Opportunity – see where dinghy sailing can take you - so if you want to start looking ahead to that and get the date in your diaries now, here's the details you're after - Discover a world of opportunity at the RYA Dinghy Show 2020

Could you be the next Club of the Year?

Entries for the 2020 RYA and Yachts & Yachting Club of the Year are now live, and after both Glossop SC and South Staffs SC were shortlisted in the final five this year, it would be great to see more Midlands clubs get their moment in the spotlight for the work they're doing. Applications close at 5pm on Friday 20 September.

The RYA Awards Panel will select a finalist for each of the 10 RYA regions, as well as two ‘wild card’ entries. During this stage, five clubs will be recognised for particular achievements in the following areas:

  • Boosting membership
  • Innovation and forward thinking
  • Inclusive and open to all
  • Fantastic facilities
  • Embracing modern communications

All finalist clubs will then go through to a public vote, with the overall winner selected by RYA members, Yachts & Yachting readers and the panel. The 2020 Club of the Year will be announced at the RYA Dinghy Show on 29 February. All the information on how to enter can be found here - RYA and Yachts & Yachting Club of the Year supported by Gallagher

Muck in at the BYS Regional Junior Championships

The British Youth Sailing Regional Junior Championships return on 28-29 September and we could do with your talents! The event is taking place at Draycote Water SC, and with Championship, Coached Regatta Racing and OnBoard Fun fleets all running at the same time there are lots of shore-based and water-based roles where your help would be make massive difference.

Some roles need no experience or qualifications, others on-the-water might need a certificate such as RYA Powerboat Level 2. Midlands HPM, Chris Blackburn, is the man to contact if you would can help out - email him at

Entries for the Championships are also open here - BYS Regional Junior Championships Midlands

Inaugural Midlands Youth Series reaching business end 

There are only two events left in the inaugural Midlands Youth Series,
but still plenty of time for young sailors at your club to get involved.

Following the the last event at Staunton Harold SC on 20 July - event
four of the six-event series - are the latest overall series standings - RESULTS

The penultimate event is at Rutland SC at the end of this month, with
the series Final at Bartley on 15 September. The series Notice of Race/Sailing Instructions and entry information can be found here -
2019 Midlands Youth Series

Join the World's largest sailing race and get afloat for Bart's Bash!

Every year the global sailing community comes together for Bart’s Bash, the world’s largest mass participation sailing event, which this year takes place on 14-15 September.

Bart’s Bash is the flagship annual event of the Andrew Simpson  Foundation (ASF), inspired by Olympic gold and silver medalist, Andrew ‘Bart’ Simpson MBE, who passionately believed everyone should have the chance to try sailing and enjoy the many benefits it brings. Not only is it a great event, and brilliant fun but it’s a good way to get newer sailors on the water for their first race.

Here's what you need to know to get involved - Bart's Bash - the largest sailing race in the world.

That wasn't too painful, to write anyway! By the way, in case you wanted to know a bit more about me and my background, I did an Q&A for the RYA Midlands Bulletin last month, which you can read here -Meet Ben - your new Midlands Regional Development Officer.