Women and girls will have a more enjoyable experience when they get afloat at Hollowell Sailing Club after the club was awarded a combined grant of £35,100 to extend its female changing facilities.

The awards - £24,000 from the Sport England Community Asset Fund and £11,100 from the Daventry District Council Capital Grant Fund - means the club is doubling the size of its female changing rooms, and work is already well underway for these to be ready before Hollowell's sailing season starts in March.

More local people are joining Hollowell SC thanks to the popularity and accessibility of its many different activities, such as its 'Try Sailing’ sessions and Open Day, RYA Training courses, RYA OnBoard sessions for local schoolchildren and youth groups and adult and youth racing programmes.

But, until now, cramped changing conditions were a definite downside for females using the club. Clive de La Fuente, Hollowell SC Commodore, admits it will be a real boost for the whole club to get the 2020 season underway on such a positive footing.

He said: "With a growing membership and very welcome balance of male and female members, a need to make this development was clear in 2018 when the application process started. We are delighted to open the new season with the female changing facilities doubling in size as this development is vital in providing the best possible experience and encouragement to access the excellent sport of sailing.”

One of the club’s junior sailors, Zara Avery, added: “Having somewhere nice and comfortable to change into my sailing kit is really important. For our club members and people trying sailing for the first time this will make everything so much nicer."

Hollowell’s first adult Start Sailing course begins on Saturday 25 April and the club Open Day is on Saturday 2 May before its weekly Try Sailing sessions kick off on 4 May and run until the middle of July. The first junior Start Sailing course starts on Saturday 6 June, with further adult and junior learn to sail courses available throughout the summer. There are also weekly ‘Back on the water’ sessions for lapsed sailors from May to July.

Hollowell SC was founded in 1966, is run by volunteers, and is non-profit making. The club has more than 380 members and prides itself on its family-oriented approach. The club is open is Saturday and Sundays most of the year, and on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from April to October. For more information about how you or your family can get on the water at Hollowell SC in 2020, visit www.hollowellsc.org.uk