Susie's Scoop August 2020


Hi everyone,

I hope you have all been enjoying the lovely warm weather. It�s great to see so many people back out on the water, whether it be for a leisurely sail or to enjoy a race as part of a team. Now that we are able to sail and race with people outside of our family household, and with more than six people too, I�d like to start this month�s Susie�s Scoop by just reiterating the guidance that I would like everyone � clubs and individuals alike - to become familiar with, and which needs to be adhered to.

RYA Guidance on sailing & racing with participants from different households

To just give a quick re-cap, earlier this month, the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) reviewed our guidance for a return to boating for crew from different households.�

We have successfully demonstrated that boating is appropriate for teams of sailors made up of different households to be permitted to sail and race together � providing the appropriate mitigation is in place.�

It is important that all participants take personal responsibility for evaluating any potential risks to themselves or others. Skippers or those with responsibility for multiple crew can find more detailed guidance on any risks and associated mitigations at the end of the Guidance document.

The maximum crew number should be decided by the abilityfor that crew to maintain social distancing afloat and race organisers areencouraged to limit crew numbers to level the playing field for all.

As well as the above Guidance, Club Guidance document and the Q&A document found in the RYA Coronavirus hub there are also two excellent Club Development videos which I recommend you watch.

Ian Walker, RYA Director of Racing helps guides clubs and individuals to understand what currently is and isn�t appropriate for all the different forms of sailing.

I think Ian sums up perfectly how we all need to take personal responsibility for minimising the risks of COVID-19:��Boating has many natural advantages that reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, but we are acutely aware that there will always be an element of risk. As this pandemic continues to unfold, it will remain vitally important that we all take personal responsibility for assessing the risks and take the appropriate mitigating actions. It remains crucial that we all respect any rules and safety measures that our clubs deem necessary to put in place.�

Whilst Richard Falk, RYA Director of Training & Qualifications explores how the RYA guidance on sailing with participants from different households impacts RYA Training activity.

As always, I would like to remind you of the RYA�s Guiding Principles which influence our actions � these being that we will take a conservative and considerate approach to getting back on the water, and always adhering to Government guidelines.

Club membership census � final push

The deadline for completing the membership census is Thursday 13 August. I know it takes time to collect, collate and input the information required. However I believe that the census results are invaluable every year and even more so this year.

Thank you if you have already submitted your return - it really will make a difference and help us to understand the impact of the coronavirus on your club's membership going forwards.�

IT�S NOT TOO LATE! We will still record and use every club�s return even if you submit it after the deadline. I have spent the last week talking to clubs, but if I have not been able to speak to you, and your return is still outstanding, then please do get in contact with me either by phone (07748806733) or email me. ASAP so that I can help you.

Rediscover Sailing

As you are aware, we reluctantly took the decision to cancel Discover Sailing for 2020. As we have been able to return to the water, we are now increasingly hearing from clubs from around the UK which are seeing more interest and activity from their club membership, and also attracting new members from those who are returning to our sport.

If your club has experienced any of this resurgence, we want to hear from you so that we can promote our clubs and all those who are Re- Discovering their love of sailing. Please send your stories to and we will make sure that everyone hears about your good news.

Save the date - Affiliated Clubs Conference 2020

I�m sure you will not be surprised to learn that this year�s regional conferences will not be in their usual formats. We have learnt a lot from hosting our hugely successful online national and regional Club Development Forums and the regional conferences will use this knowledge to come together for one large virtual event.

The great news is that this online format opens it up so a lot more people can take part - for the first time ever more than two representatives from each club can take part. Which gives more scope for more people to watch and get involved with the sessions most relevant to their role at the club. This year�s theme is: A different world with new opportunities.�

The Conference will take place in November but we are still confirming the date � this is most likely to be either the 21st or the 28th � watch this space and social media.

Now open - 2021 RYA Club of the Year

Applications are now open for the 2021 RYA and Yachts & Yachting Club of the Year Award supported by Gallagher. All RYA affiliated clubs across the UK are eligible to apply and there will be a finalist from each of the 10 RYA Regions as well as two �wild card� entries.

Five clubs will also receive recognition for particular achievements in five areas including new for 2021: 'Heart of the community'. Entries close on Monday 21 September. You can find everything you need here -�RYA and Yachts & Yachting Club of the Year Award.

Nominations now open - John Merricks Sailing Trust

Do you know a sailor, 14 years of age of under, who could benefit from the exclusive use of their own boat or board for the next two years? This is a great partnership between the John Merricks Sailing Trust and OnBoard boats and boards partnership. Find out how to nominate here.

Sailability news from Leon Ward, Disability Development Officer for the South

We have a number of groups beginning to get back on the water with smaller numbers, usually the more experienced sailors and those who do not fit in the vulnerable category, following Government and RYA guidance. Things do look different now, but groups are finding ways to get back sailing.

This is not the case with all our groups, as some feel they will be unable to operate this year, as many of both their sailors and volunteers are considered vulnerable. So we have been looking at ways that we can support these groups on a national basis, outside of our normal support on an individual basis.

We plan to continue our regional Sailability forums, as there is a demand for them from Sailability groups, however they will now happen once a month. The forums combine both the South and the South West regions. They have been well attended with groups sharing ideas and experiences, especially around getting safely back on the water, following the latest government guidance. Watch this space and social media for when the next forum will take place.

We are delivering RYA Sailability videos to launch some of our new guidance documents, these can be found on the RYA Youtube channel. Previous videos include �A guide to a conversation with participants� and the �Sailability Safety Guidance�. The latest video is the launch of our �Autism and Boating� guide and features interviews with autistic sailors, talking about their experiences, especially around racing.

Junior racing news from Duncan West, the South�s Regional Performance Manager

We have just published the�selection policy for the Regional Training Groups�(RTG). These will run taking into account the government guidelines and best practice that is current at the time of the activity.

The�training dates and venues�for the RTG have also been published. Please appreciate that some of these may change as not all clubs are in a position to agree winter training.

I am going to run an online forum on the Regional Training Groups (RTG), which have replaced both Zone and UKJS training. This will cover a quick recap of the background, while mainly concentrate on how we intend to run them and also an opportunity to ask a question. Due to the present situation there will still be a few uncertainty�s, but I will defiantly be able to explain our intentions.

It will take place on Wednesday 19th August at 3pm-4pm, then a repeat session will also take place at 7pm-8pm. You will need to book your place at here For RTGs, dates and policies. Please visit here.

We are still hoping to run the BYS Regional Junior Championships at WPNSA on 26th and 27th September. The exact format is yet to be confirmed, but it will be a much smaller event and is likely to have split fleets on each day, with Toppers and Fevas on one day and Optimist and RS Teras on the other. More details will follow. Entry for the event will most likely open on 17 August.

The British Keelboat Academy is looking for young sailors

The British Keelboat Academy (BKA) is looking for young sailors aged between 18-24 to be part of the next cohort of BKA sailors. The BKA helps young dingy racers wanting to make the transition to yacht and keelboat racing, and develops the skills needed to take keelboat racing to a professional level.

Please share this information through-out your club - to find out more information you can visit here.

Passing of Frances Christopher Savage

I was saddened to learn of the death of Chris Savage who peacefully passed away on the 9th July after a short but determined fight against cancer.

Born on 21 January in Scotland, Chris loved Salcombe and Chichester Harbour, and following his retirement he quickly became involved in the management of Chichester Yacht Club. He played an important role in the development of their additional facilities which are now widely enjoyed today, and served as Commodore from 2005 to 2007.

Chris was also heavily involved in the Chichester Harbour Federation and joined its Chairman�s Committee in 2006. Following completion of his term as Commodore, Chris volunteered to be Hon. Treasurer & Secretary, where he was particularly supportive with a number of initiatives to advance the work of the Federation. He served as Vice Chairman for five years and was elected Chairman in December 2018.

In 2013 he was appointed as a Federation representative on the Advisory Committee, and with his extensive financial background from a successful career with Barclays Bank, joined the Chichester Harbour Conservancy Budget Advisory Group, later to be renamed the Finance Risk and Audit Group, where he gave invaluable contribution and advice. In September 2019 he was elected chairman of the FRAG, and was also elected Chairman of the Advisory Committee in November last year.

At its last meeting on 3 July 2020, the Chichester Harbour Conservancy awarded Chris the Freedom of the Harbour for his substantial contribution to harbour life and to the well-being of the Conservancy and its staff.

Chris also served on the RYA South Committee for four years. My thoughts are with Chris�s friends and family including his wife Maureen and their children Gavin and Andrea.

Please share and keep in touch!

Please share this Club Room - and encourage people to sign themselves up here. This is our main communication for club related information so be the first to hear.

The more we share with each other, the more we can learn about the challenges that clubs are facing and how we can best navigate these together. You can email me here and the other regional contacts can be found here.