Privacy & Data Protection Policy

Privacy, Security and Data Protection policies from the RYA.

The RYA is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy.

This policy explains when and why we collect personal information about you, how we use it, how we keep it secure and the circumstances when it may be disclosed to others. The policy also explains your rights in relation to that personal information.

We keep this policy under regular review, and may change it from time to time, so please check this page for any updates. The privacy policy was last updated on May 6 2022.

Who are we?

We are the Royal Yachting Association, of RYA House, Ensign Way, Hamble, SO31 4YA (we, us).

We work closely with and share certain internal resources and systems with RYA Scotland, RYA Cymru Wales and RYA Northern Ireland.  We also work with almost 1,500 affiliated clubs and class associations and over 2,350 Recognised Training Centres. These are separate and independent entities which have met the standards required to be affiliated or recognised by us.

When do we collect your personal information?

We have a range of roles and so collect personal information at different times. These include when you: 

Join, or apply to join, the RYA family;

  • you become a member of the RYA
  • you join any RYA committee or volunteer for the RYA in any other capacity
  • you join or participate in, or any child for whom you are responsible joins or participates as a member of any of our sport development programmes, racing squads or teams
  • you become an instructor, examiner, trainer, coach, race official or other RYA qualification or appointment holder
  • you join us a member of staff or agree to become a contractor for us


Use an RYA product or service;

  • Provide ensign administration services
  • the RYA Websites including and
  • the RYA Web shop
  • subscribe for email newsletters and updates
  • download or use any mobile device application or other software provided by us or on our behalf (an "RYA App")
  • download or subscribe to RYA eBooks
  • use any RYA online materials
  • participate in any sporting event, experience day, boat show, or sporting competition run by us
  • enter a competition, promotion or survey run by us
  • obtain any training or coaching directly from us, or via our recognised training centres or affiliated clubs
  • undertake any assessment or examination provided by us or via any of our affiliated clubs or recognised training centres
  • undertake an RYA qualification which is centrally registered by us
  • apply to us for an International Certificate of Competence (ICC)
  • apply to us for a competition licence for powerboat racing
  • ask us to carry out a survey, inspection or other technical service for you
  • ask us to provide legal, technical or other advice
  • engage with us in connection with the Racing Rules of Sailing, for instance in connection with a protest appeal hearing
  • ask us to provide verification of any of your relevant qualifications or experience or refer any person to us to obtain any such verification
  • ask us to undertake a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check on your behalf

What type of information do we collect?

Common information we ask for includes:

  • Your name, address, e-mail address and phone number in order to contact you
  • Financial and credit card information, in order that we can process an order for you
  • Photographs for instance in connection with photo verified certificates (such as the ICC)

For those participating in events, training programmes, squads or teams;

  • Details of any relevant medical conditions which could affect your participation (which will only be collected when you have provided your express consent)
  • the name, address, email address and phone number of your next of kin and/or emergency contact
  • details of any relevant training records and training plans
  • details of your participation and performance in sporting events and competitions
  • any relevant dietary records and details of your dietary requirements

For those applying to join the RYA family as a member of staff, committee member, volunteer, contractor or in some other capacity

  • details of your current occupation and employment history
  • details of any relevant boating, yachting or other sea faring experience you may have
  • health information including any particular health conditions or mental or physical impairments you may have which may impact on your role, and details of your qualifications including the results of any examination or assessment
  • Additional Information we collect about you when you visit any RYA Website or use any RYA App;
    • technical information, including the Internet protocol (IP) address used to connect your computer or mobile device to the internet, your login information, browser type and version, time zone setting, browser plug-in types and versions, operating system and platform
    • information about your visit, including the full Uniform Resource Locators (URL) clickstream to, through and from our site (including date and time); products you viewed or searched for; items purchased and the cost of those items including any discounts; page response times, download errors, length of visits to certain pages, page interaction information (such as scrolling, clicks, and mouse-overs), and methods used to browse away from the page and any phone number used to call our customer service number
    • information about your use of any RYA App or online training system
    • real time location data from your mobile device


Information about you which we may receive from other sources with whom we work, including; 

  • Recognised Training Centres, coaches, examiners, inspectors and assessors who will provide us with details of your qualifications including the results of any examination, assessment or training course and any accompanying notes and observations regarding your performance (including information received from countries outside of the European Economic Area ("EEA"))
  • clubs, class associations, race organisers (including protest committees and juries) in connection with the Racing Rules of Sailing
  • results of questions asked by third parties who we engage to carry out customer satisfaction surveys
  • sporting regulatory and funding bodies both in the UK and overseas (including countries outside of the EEA)
  • enforcement agencies both in the UK and overseas (including countries outside of the EEA)
  • sub-contractors in technical, payment and delivery services;
  • advertising networks and analytics providers
  • search information providers and credit reference agencies;


Information which may be provided on your behalf or at your request, for example if:

  • any person makes a booking for any of our training courses, facilities or other services on your behalf;
  • you are a minor and your parent or legal guardian provides us with information about you on your behalf; or
  • we take up references for you or seek verification of any of your qualifications from any referee you may have put forward.


The information about you which we may receive from other sources may include;

  • your credit history
  • details of your membership of other sporting bodies; for instance class associations
  • the results of any criminal records searches which we may conduct on our own behalf or on behalf of recognised training centres and affiliated clubs
  • information received in the course of providing advisory services to recognised training centres and affiliated clubs on safeguarding and child protection


Website Cookies

Why do we collect this information?

When we collect information from you directly we explain the reason for collecting that information at the time of collection.

To fulfil a contract with you;

  • to administer your membership and to provide membership information and membership benefits to you, to notify you about changes to our membership benefits, products, facilities or services
  • to provide you with any products and services that you request from us including: items purchased from us, event entries, squad participation, equipment loans, coaching and training services and examination and assessment services
  • to register you as a qualification or credential holder
  • to keep you up to date with certain information when this is required because you hold a particular qualification
  • to consider an application to join the RYA family as an employee, volunteer, committee member or in some other capacity, and to manage any such relationship


When it is in our legitimate interests, and our interests are not overridden by your own interests;

  • to notify you of any changes or proposed changes in any laws, regulations or best practice in relation to boating and other related activities which we feel may be of interest to you
  • to ask questions for the purposes of market research
  • to provide you, with information about goods or services we feel may interest you that are similar to those that you have already obtained, purchased or enquired about. If you are an existing member or customer, we will only contact you by electronic means (e-mail or text message) with information about goods and services similar to those which were the subject of a previous sale or negotiations of a sale to you
  • to administer our awards programmes, when you may not be aware of your nomination for such award
  • to consider any complaints made to us about you, either in your capacity as a member of the RYA family, qualification holder, participant or otherwise


When we have obtained your consent to do so;

  • when you have opted in to receive email newsletters and other marketing materials


When we have obtained your explicit consent to do so;

  • when dealing with ‘special categories’ of information such as medical data, biometric or profiling data, passport data or similar as defined by the General Data Protection Regulation, for instance medical information gathered to participate in an event, or to hold a particular qualification or licence.


When do we share your information?

We may share your information with certain third parties including:

  • The Disclosure and Barring Service, AccessNI and Disclosure Scotland - for instance when we are asked to process an application on your behalf
  • World Sailing, as required under the Racing Rules of Sailing
  • the RYA Home Countries
  • the English Institute of Sport, if participating in one of our performance programmes
  • business partners, suppliers and sub-contractors for the performance of any contract we enter into with you, or for any service provided to us, including;
    • The Leadership Factor, a market research company engaged by us, in connection with satisfaction surveys
    • Pure 360, a digital marketing company, in connection with the distribution of e-newsletters
    • our mailing house; in order to send you the RYA Magazine
    • Guestpoint Motelier P/L, when you book a room at RYA Portland House
    • Sitecore & Umbraco, for website functionality including membership log in and personalisation as well as the distribution of email
    • JustGo Group Limited, a third party supplier of club management software, in connection with our club management platform


  • affiliated clubs and class associations and recognised training centres both in the UK and overseas (including countries outside of the EEA) who require the information in order to provide services which you have requested or to conduct any examinations or assessments which you have requested (and who may need to pass the same to emergency and medical services providers, who may be located outside of the EEA)
  • Surveyors, measurers examiners, inspectors, assessors, trainers and coaches who require the information in order to provide services which you have requested or to conduct any surveys, measurements examinations or assessments which you have requested (and who may need  to pass the same to emergency and medical services providers, and who may be located outside of the EEA)
  • race officials and race organisers of events held or managed by us who require the information in order to look after your welfare (and who may need to pass the same to emergency and medical services providers, who may be located outside of the EEA)
  • sporting regulatory bodies and law enforcement agencies both in the UK and overseas (including countries outside of the EEA) when it is necessary to comply with our legal obligations
  • organisers of sporting events in which you propose to participate both in the UK and overseas (including countries outside of the EEA), including the BOA
  • prospective employers and any other persons you may refer to us for the purpose of obtaining from us any references or verification of your qualifications or experience
  • credit reference agencies for the purpose of assessing your credit score where this is a condition of us entering into a contract with you
  • The MCA or other relevant flag state government body, as part of administering your Small Commercial Vessel certification or when we are asked to process an application for Tonnage Measurement, or when required to do so by law


We may also disclose your personal information to third parties:

  • if we are under a duty to disclose or share your personal information in order to comply with any legal or regulatory obligation, or in order to enforce or apply any contract or terms in force between you and us; or to protect the rights, property, or safety of RYA, our customers, members or others. This includes exchanging information with other companies and organisations for the purposes of security, law enforcement, fraud protection and credit risk reduction
  • if you ask, to provide any verification of your qualifications or experience or if you refer any person to us to obtain any verification of your qualifications or experience, we may use your information to provide the verification sought


We will only disclose as much information as is required for the third party to fulfil the particular function and where required to do so we will have a contract in place with third parties requiring them to keep your information secure and not to use if for their own purposes.

We may choose to publish certain information in the public domain or the press:

  • We may ask for your consent to use your image or certain personal information for publicity purposes.
  • In certain limited situations it may be in our legitimate interests to publish certain personal information about you without asking for your consent. Examples include publishing race results, mentioning you by name in press releases or articles, publishing lists of squad, team or committee member’s names or publishing decisions reached under the Racing Rules of Sailing.  Before publishing such information we will consider the potential impact publishing may have on you, and your rights, and ensure that these are not overridden by our own interests.

How long do we keep your information?

We may keep and process your personal information for as  long as necessary to fulfil the purposes we collected it for, or for as long it is necessary to do so for legal reasons.

We will review your personal information regularly to establish whether we are still entitled to process it. If we decided that we are not entitled to do so, we will stop processing your personal information to the extent that it is appropriate to do so and securely delete or anonymise it.

To determine the appropriate retention period, we will consider the amount, nature and sensitivity of that information, the potential risk of harm from unauthorised use or disclosure, and whether we can achieve the purposes for which we process that personal information through other means.

In some cases you can ask us to delete the personal information we hold about you. Please see the section below titled your rights.

Where do we store your personal information?

Your information may be held at our offices, or on secure servers either owned by the RYA or by one of our data processing partners. On occasions your information may be transferred to or stored at other locations, for instance when participating in events. We have in in place reasonable technological measures and operational procedures to safeguard your personal information from unauthorised access.

Transferring information outside of the EEA

In some circumstances it is necessary for your personal information to be transferred outside the EEA, for instance when you use an RYA service while outside the EEA, undertake an RYA course outside the EEA or participate in an event outside of the EEA. 

Passwords and PINs

Where we have given you (or where you have chosen) a password or PIN which enables you to access certain parts of any RYA Website or to use any RYA App, you are responsible for keeping this password or PIN confidential. We ask you not to share passwords and PINs with anyone.

Your rights

You have the following rights in relation to the personal information we hold about you:

  • to access your personal information
  • to be provided with information about how your personal information is processed
  • to have your personal information corrected
  • to have your personal information erased. Please be aware that erasing your personal information may prevent us from continuing to provide services to you.
  • to object to or restrict how your personal information is processed
  • to have your personal information transferred to yourself or to another business in certain circumstances


In many cases you can exercise these rights by logging on to and making changes to your profile or by making a request to

You have the right to take any complaints about how we process your personal information to the Information Commissioner:

0303 123 1113.

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Cheshire SK9 5AF

EU Representative

We have appointed IT Governance Europe Limited to act as our EU Representative. If you wish to exercise your rights under the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), or have any queries in relation to your rights or privacy matters generally please email our Representative at or post your request or query to:


EU Representative, IT Governance Europe,Third Floor, The Boyne Tower, Bull Ring, Lagavooren, Drogheda, Co. Louth, A92 F682


When contacting our Representative please ensure you include our company name in any correspondence you.