September 2022

Latest news from your Regional Development Officer

You will have noticed that this month's edition of Club Room is a little later than normal, as we paused to reflect on the sad news of the passing of our Patron, Her Majesty The Queen. We hope that you received the tribute that we shared with our members and the wider boating community.

Our thoughts and condolences remain with The Princess Royal, RYA President, and the entire Royal Family.

There have been lots of major sailing events taking place this summer, such as Falmouth Sailing Week and Dartmouth Regatta Sailing Week.  It really has been a fantastic season, with volunteers giving up lots of time and many enthusiastic sailors turning up to many events.


I’m delighted to say that the figures in this year’s census are up, and early signs show still more joiners and fewer leavers than last year across the region as a whole. A massive thanks to everyone for filling it in – we reached our target of 80% of clubs returning their forms, and earlier than ever before. That’s a record for the SW! There are about 15 clubs that haven’t submitted yet, but it’s not too late if you want to send in yours. 

Member satisfaction interviews for Affiliated Clubs Conference 

Over the next couple of weeks, I will be filming short video case studies with members at several clubs in the region. We will be discussing different types of club members and members' satisfaction with aspects of club life. This is part of my preparation for the Affiliated Clubs Conference (ACC), when we’ll be running a workshop that introduces you to the motivations of key market segments and discusses how clubs are supporting those motivations to introduce and keep participants.  

Booking for the Affiliated Clubs Conference (ACC) in Taunton on 5 November is now open – reserve your place now

As a quick reminder, the ACC is free to attend and we encourage clubs to attend with more than one representative as there are multiple workshops running at the same time. It's a great event for anyone involved in managing your club or its activities including: flag officers, committee members, staff and volunteers. 

Th regional event will be preceded by a scene-setting national Online Club Briefing at 7pm on Wednesday, 5 October 2022, hosted by Olympian and broadcaster Shirley Robertson. Look out for further details on our social media channels and remember to register for the RYA Live Club Show online!

Shirehampton Sailing Club

I was recently at Shirehampton Sailing Club for their Discover Sailing event. The event was part of an inclusivity project that the club have been involved in and attracted lots of community groups and a really diverse bunch of people. The club has already increased its membership from the project and is working on an extension project with the community groups funded by another Together Fund application. We’ll be supporting both the community groups and the sailing club during the process. 

If you feel that your club can provide a community benefit, please talk to me about the Together Fund.

Time to Talk

Thank you to everyone who came long to the recent Time to Talk club sessions, where clubs of a similar size met online to get an update from me on current topics and news, and to discuss them together, as well as any other issues they wanted to raise.  There will also be Time to Talk events for recognised training centres coming up later in October:  

11 October - for power and PWC centres
12 October - for multi discipline centres   
13 October - for training centres that are part of a club

Harken Youth Match Racing National Championships 

Will Cagier from Bristol University, Alex Whitfield from Bath University and Oli Hale from Poole Yacht Club all represented the SW at the Youth Keelboat Match racing finals which took place at Cardiff Bay Yacht Club over the weekend of 3-4 September.

Congratulations to them, especially Oli's all under-19 team, which came an impressive second, beating all of the under-23 teams.

Junior racing news from Regional Performance Manager, Duncan West

This month, we will be sending out invitations for the British Youth Sailing Regional Training Groups. We will be able to tell you the names of all the sailors, and which clubs they come from, in the next blog.

Until then, 

RDO Rob Howlett  
07876 330374