February 2022 blog


It’s been a really busy start to the year with lots of activity around the region, whether for training courses, club racing or winter series events.

Our Regional Training Groups for junior sailors have been busy too and there have also been lots of work parties, with dedicated volunteers determined to get their clubs and boat parks in good shape for the new season.


Development opportunities for your team

For volunteers, instructors and staff at clubs and centres across the North West, we have a full programme of training opportunities underway, with lots of RYA courses and up-skilling sessions. These sessions cover a broad range of roles and are a great way to up-skill your team ahead of the season.

For instructors we have a series of free online CPD sessions in February and March on Wednesdays at 7pm, covering a wide range of topics and the latest scheme updates and insights. These are well worth signing up for, and if you can’t make a particular session, they are all being recorded so you can catch up later. Please share the details with your instructors who, if they haven’t already signed up, are invited to find out more and register here.

Courses meanwhile for instructors and volunteers over Spring include: Keelboat Instructor Endorsement (booking open soon), Dinghy Instructor Revalidation, Racing Instructor Endorsement, Dinghy Senior Instructor and a Powerboat Instructor Course.

We are continuing to add to the programme and details about all instructor courses and CPD can be found at RYA North West Instructor Courses.

One of the development sessions I am most looking forward to is the Advanced Sailing Day which is running at the Anderton Centre. Not only is this day a chance to get out sailing in a range of asymmetric boats with coaching, the centre is also providing a fantastic 2 course hot lunch and a great chance to catch up with fellow instructors. The payment system for this is currently not working so please use the code AD100 when booking onto this event and we will sort payment out closer to the day.

There is also now a free online RYA Club Race Management Course available here for any club members who would like to learn about running club racing. Ideal for those who are new to helping out with racing duties or who want to develop their confidence!

Also coming up is a Race Coach Level 3 course at Leigh & Lowton SC, 9-10 April and 11-12 June.  Details and booking for all of this can be found via the RYA Race Coaching hub.

Please do consider how your club can make the most of the training opportunities on offer this year as it presents an accessible route for both developing your existing staff or volunteer base and for encouraging new volunteers to get involved as well.


Club Welfare Officers

Calling all club Welfare Officers! RYA Safeguarding are hosting ‘Meet the Team’ online sessions in March to answer any queries and provide an update on plans for 2022. There will be a session for each RYA Region in England and questions to the team can be asked in advanced via email here.

The initiative follows the success of last year's RYA Safeguarding 'Meet the Team' sessions with Welfare Officers in the RYA Home Countries. The forthcoming dates for England will see the session for those from RYA North West Region clubs taking place on 15th March.

You can book your place here - remember to select the north West region – and if your club does not have a Welfare Officer, please email safeguarding@rya.org.uk for an info pack.


RYA Dinghy Trails

Following the successful launch or the Ullswater Dinghy Trail in 2021, I am excited to announce we are launching 3 more trails at the RYA Dinghy & Watersports Show at the end of the month. This will mean we now have 4 fantastic trails in the lake district for any sailors looking for an adventure this season. The North West Trails can be viewed here.

With so many people visiting the lake district every summer, I am really excited to see how popular these new routes are. The 4 trails will be ‘Glorious Ullswater’, ‘Coniston Waters’, ‘Windermere North’ & ‘Windermere South’.

For more information on the dinghy trails please visit: https://www.rya.org.uk/knowledge/dinghy-trails

Sailability Networking Day

On Saturday 26th March, we will be hosting a North West Sailability Network Day at The Anderton Centre. This day is free to attend and is primarily aimed at volunteers or paid staff who are engaged in Sailability activity or those who have an aspiration do more.

Run by our Disability Development Officer James Wheeldon, this is a fantastic opportunity to bring our Sailability Network together, to share those successes and challenges we are facing, as well as enabling us to explore new ways of working in an effort to make sailing even more accessible and inclusive.

Booking for this day will open soon, please email james.wheeldon@rya.org.uk for more information.

Club Development Webinars

Club treasurers and committee members are urged to sign up for a free RYA webinar on Corporation Tax on Wednesday 9 March at 7.30pm, which will be led by expert tax consultant Richard Baldwin MBE, FCA,CTA and provide essential knowledge for clubs in order to keep up to date with the latest tax information: register here for this webinar.

We also now have recordings available from the Club Development Sessions which took place in January and covered membership, volunteering, facilities and governance. Following on from these there is a new series of online club workshops now bookable, which takes a closer a look at all the issues around maintaining and developing facilities for the future. These begin on 22 February with Club Facilities: Starting your Environmental Journey, and this session is bookable here. Further webinars in March, April and May will then explore the topics of Design and Construction; Planning, Permissions and Consent; and Procurement and Build.

For recordings of past online sessions and information about forthcoming webinars as they become bookable visit our RYA Club Development Sessions hub.

And finally…..

Good luck to Airnside Sailing Club and Budworth Sailing Club, our two North West Finalists for the RYA Club of the Year 2022 award. The winner will be announced at the RYA Dinghy and Watersports Show at the end of this month!