It was ladies day at Royal Quays Marina on Saturday 15th June when ten ladies took the helm and steered their way through a day of tuition as part of the RYA Active Marinas Project.  

Under the expert eye of Melvyn Wallhead of Northumbria Sailing, the students learned important skills essential to the safe handling of yachts and motor boats. The practical tuition included the tricky business of berthing, locking in and out of the marina and other close handling exercises.  

Mooring up and manoeuvring in tightly packed marinas and harbours are often two of the most stressful parts of a voyage, but a skilful instructor like Melvyn Wallhead from Northumbria Sailing can reduce this anxiety with a few well planned guidelines.  

"It was really enjoyable and Melvyn was a very patient instructor," said marina berth holder Christine Burt.  

"It was a fantastic way to give us ladies confidence out on the water," agreed fellow student Michelle Ball.

"We met other like minded ladies and generally enjoyed ourselves."   In 2012, Royal Quays Marina became the first marina in the North East to join the RYA Active Marina project. A full programme of boating events is planned throughout the summer to help berth holders get the most out of their boat.  

"Being part of the RYA Active Marina Project brings another dimension to the marina and adds value for the berth holders," said Matt Simms, Marina Manager at Royal Quays Marina.

"The feedback that we have had so far on the training and social opportunities that the programme brings has been really positive. I wonder how we haven't done this sooner! We are very pleased to be part of the programme and will looking to develop it in the future."  

Events lined up at Royal Quays Marina over the next few weeks include:  

Saturday 6th July - RNLI Sea Safety Roadshow Weekend

13th & 14th July - Cruise in company to Amble

Saturday 27th - Sunderland Airshow weekend - Marina BBQ  

For more details about events at Royal Quays Marina and their RYA Active Marina Programme please call 0191 272 8282 or email