Scottish Club Chat November 2023

We are now well into the reviewing of our year, AGMs and planning for development season for our sport. There’s lots going on with National and Local events planned until the beginning of next season.
08 Nov 23
Collapsed harbour wall at East Lothian Harbour which was damage through Storm Babet in October 2023

The recent storms with accompanying high winds and heavy rainfall have caused major disruptions and significant damage around Scotland. If your organisation has been negatively affected, please don’t hesitate to contact RYA Scotland to see how we might be able to support.

The RYA Volunteer awards are announced this week as part of the RYA AGM on Friday 10th, and we look forward to hearing some of those great stories from volunteers around the UK. We are looking forward to hearing more stories through our Impact Awards over the winter months and if you wish to celebrate some of the volunteers at your own club who make an impact on your time afloat. 

Take just a few minutes to nominate someone today. You can see previous winners on the RYAS YouTube Channel.

Our own AGM is available online I you were not able to attend. Thanks to all who contributed, and it provides an overview of RYA Scotland’s work across the country. 

Scottish Women and Girls in Sport Week 2023 (#SheCanSheWill) was 2-8 October. Did you know the number of women qualifying as Instructors and Coaches in Scotland is on the rise? Over 50% of the last three Senior Instructor course candidates have been female and we are super excited to have had a 12-person female Race Coach Level 2 Course fully booked this past weekend with Paralympic Gold Medallist Helena Lucas as the lead tutor. These new Senior Instructors and Race Coaches are role models for future generations and show what women can achieve in our sport. These activities along with others, like the session on Supporting Girls in Sailing and Boarding at the recent Giant Academy weekend, and initiatives like the RYAS partnership with Hey Girls, can help reduce the gender gap and ultimately make RYAS and its affiliates more sustainable.

sportscotland’s theme for November is celebrating sport. Share any stories you have related to this theme on your social channels, using the hashtag #LetsCelebrateSport. In December, the theme will be a year in sport and a chance to look back and reflect on sport in Scotland in 2023. 

Scottish Disability Sport Week (#ScottishDisabilitySportWeek) will be from 27 November to 3 December, culminating on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. Physical activity can be fun and safe for everyone, including people with disabilities, often with only minor adaptations. If your organisation is planning anything to mark this week, please let RYAS know, and we can help spread the word. To learn more about how you might be able to deliver your activities to a more diverse group of people, including those with disabilities (physical, visible, or otherwise), please consider joining the conversation at our December Connect Call.

A starting point for your organisation may be the Scottish Disability Sport Inclusive Club Resource. This free guide can help you make your club or centre more welcoming and inclusive for people with disabilities. Please feel free to contact us for support with utilising any part of it.

Connected Conference – Save the Date 

We are delighted to confirm that the 2024 conference will be held on Saturday 2nd March 2024 at the Dewars Centre, Perth (the same venue as our 2023 conference). The 2024 Connected Conference, formerly known as the Affiliated Club Conference, will be open to clubs, Sailability groups, class associations, race officials and recognised training centres; and will include conversations on a variety of topics and issues that affect our community. 

We will have representation from the RYA at the event and we plan to launch our newly updated Development Framework. Working together it will be a chance for us to share, grow and learn whilst getting prepared for the season ahead.

Bookings will go live at the beginning of December; more information to follow.

Winter Connect Calls: mark your calendars and register for free.

The RYA Scotland Class Academies comprise a programme forsailors and boarders to continue their racing and sailing journey over the winter months. The Academies were launched at the end of September with the Giant Academy at Largs, which was just the beginning of the opportunities to get involved, make new friends, have fun, and develop skills this winter. Further details can be found here

Here is some advice from The Green Blue to stay environmentally friendly through the winter maintenance period:

Antifoul Awareness 

Whilst antifoul paint, containing biocides such as copper and zinc, do a great job of keeping our hulls clean, and even have some environmental benefits such as improving fuel efficiency due to less drag from fouling and preventing the attachment and spread of invasive non-native species, they are toxic to aquatic life. Therefore, as a boating community we must ensure we make more sustainable choices when it comes to selecting an antifoul coating and adopt environmental best practice when applying, removing, and disposing of antifoul to minimise pollution.

The GreenBlue, alongside partners, have the Protect, Collect & Dispose campaign promoting boaters to:

Protect the ground under our boats; use a tarpaulin and trip trays.

Collectany drips, spills, and debris

Dispose of all contaminated items and paint legally into hazardous waste bins.

Visit the campaign page to learn more.

Here are a few current funding options to consider:

Please do not hesitate to make contact if you have questions or areas where we might be able to support. Send us a message at

All the best from The Development Team – Laura, Brian, Rhys, Liza & Naseef