SW Chairman's Report 2019


Chairman’s Report 

It is with pleasure that I present my report on the activities of RYA SW Region(RYASW) for 2019. This will be my final report and I thank my fellow teammembers and the clubs with which I personally liaise for their support and thepleasure I have had in representing the interests of RYASW over the past fouryears. 

Ina change in format, the reports of key members of the regional team are attachedas appendices. My 2018 report is also attached as appendix 8. 

1.   Introduction: nationalorganisation 

Atthe 2018 RYA AGM, new governance structure, strategies and processes wereformally agreed. These stem from the requirements of UK Sports that all sportsgoverning bodies conform with consistent and high standards of governance inorder to be eligible for funding. 

In2019, the consequential impacts have been systematically embedded. With Councilas the supreme body being replaced by a Board with appropriate accountability,Council was disbanded. With RYA Scotland, Wales (Cymru) and Northern Irelandhaving devolved arrangements, a new linkage of the English regions has beendeveloped. Called the English Regions Forum (ERF), its purpose is

  1. to provide a channel of communication between RYA management, affiliated organisations, personal members and other stakeholders…
  2. to support RYA-wide initiatives and events, including advising the RYA on the appointment to local planning, environmental and navigational committees and boards.  

Regionalchairmen have been holding monthly telecom meetings to develop terms ofreference, prioritised agenda issues and opportunities to share best practice.The first full meeting of the ERF, including Board and senior executivemembers, took place on 11 September 2019. This is a key process in linkingeffective communications with and between affiliated clubs, personal members,commercial training centres, the regional teams, the executive and the Board. 

Awelcome and successful innovation this year was a gathering of representativesof the English regions, RYA Scotland, RYA Wales, RYA Northern Ireland who metwith senior members of the Executive and the Board. The intention was toestablish a common purpose and open up the sharing of ideas and experiences. 

2   Introduction: regionalorganisation 

Oneoutcome of the new governance processes has been new terms of reference (TORs)for regional teams. These are in effect a sub-set of the ERF TORs, withregion-specific references, and can be inspected, on request, to the RYASWSecretary.

Thecomposition of the regional team has been strengthened with new members, bothCommodores of their respective clubs: Neil Stroud, Castle Cove YC, Weymouth,and Paul Morris, Cabot Cruising Club, Bristol. Marine lawyer and Dart HarbourBoard member Tristan Harwood has also joined the team. 

Weaim to include an 18-25 year-old representative and the British UniversitiesSailing Association (BUSA) has been identified as a possible source. We arealso looking to recruit a representative of the commercial training centres. 

Theinfluential leadership of Regional Development Officer has transferred fromTony Wood to Rob Howlett. 

3.   Introduction: looking ahead 

The Department for Education has re-instated sailingand windsurfing on the PGSE Activity List, recognising that these activitiessupport the STEM curriculum, whilst also developing problem solving,independence and personal confidence. This recognition fits with the OnBoardprogramme which RYASW supports with local funding opportunities. Clubs areencouraged to visit the RYA OnBoard web-sites, and to work with local schools. 

Irecorded in my 2018 report that there are over 7000 junior sailors in our 177Affiliated Clubs. Only around 120 of these are drawn into the high-performancePathway coaching and development scheme. The regional team are beginning toassess how, working with clubs, we might further enhance the sailing experienceof the many who gain their competence and enthusiasm at club level, butavoiding the need for parental support and extensive travel. 

Tothis end, we have identified that, within the region, there are four naturalclusters of clubs: Poole and east Dorset, Bristol area including both BristolChannel and inland clubs, South Devon, Falmouth and west Cornwall.

During2020 we will be asking key clubs in those four sub-regions to host symposiafocusing on specific topics. One such topic will be junior sailing. Anothercould be a Commodores’ gathering. Other topics will, hopefully, be developed bythe clubs themselves with RYASW acting as facilitators and coordinators. 

Adate for the diary: the 2020 Cruising Conference will take place on 7 March.The venue is still to be confirmed but is likely to be either in the Bristolarea or WPNSA Portland. We are committed to taking events to different venuesthroughout the region. 

Iwould like to take this opportunity to thank the clubs across the region whichhost our team meetings, enabling the clubs to have direct contact with teammembers, and enables the team to get experience of the variety of the clubs weserve.