HRH The Princess Royal helped Toddbrook Sailing Club bring the curtain down on a year of 60th anniversary celebrations as she visited Whaley Bridge on Tuesday 15 January.

Her Royal Highness, President of sailing's national governing body, the Royal Yachting Association (RYA), enjoyed a demonstration of tactical team racing on the reservoir before presenting five of the club’s young sailors with Assistant Instructor (AI) certificates, meaning they can help teach others to sail.

Accompanied by Toddbrook SC Commodore, Chris Gay, HRH also took a tour of the club’s facilities including its Sport England Inspired Facilities-funded clubhouse and changing rooms, opened in late 2016, before unveiling a commemorative anniversary plaque and being presented with a painting by local artist, Rob Wilson, of boats sailing on Toddbrook Reservoir.

Richard Thorpe, RYA Training Principal, said: “It was a wonderful day, the weather was perfect, everything went as planned and Her Royal Highness impressed everyone she spoke to, she really recognised what running a small club was all about and the young AIs were thrilled to bits that she took the time to chat to them.

“She gave a short speech when she unveiled the plaque and commended the club for having the foresight and plan to build the clubhouse and changing rooms when we did to help make the club sustainable, and she also encouraged our young sailors to give something back to the club as volunteers into the future so that we can keep providing opportunities for all.”

Amongst the guests introduced to Her Royal Highness included Steven Tinsley, RYA Midlands Chairman, and Tricia Ordsmith, RYA Midlands Sailing Development Officer. Toddbrook SC were also grateful to High Peak neighbours, Glossop SC, for lending them three Hartley dinghies for the team racing. For more information about Toddbrook SC visit www.toddbrooksailingclub.org.uk