Alison (Ali) Husband and Tony Evans have been nominated by their respective clubs, the Royal Lymington Yacht Club and the Lymington Town Sailing Club.  Ali and Tony were selected as winners by the RYA Honours and Awards Panel and will receive their awards at the organisation’s annual awards ceremony in London on 16 November.  

Ali joined the Royal Lymington Yacht Club in 1982 and has been sharing her lifelong love of sailing with youngsters ever since. She has attracted support funding from local companies and was influential in the completion of a major pontoon replacement project. Now a Senior Instructor, she helps with the Wednesday Junior Sailing scheme and in 2013 became its Head working with the RYA Club Principal and volunteers to ensure the success of weekly sailing sessions for over 100 children aged eight to eighteen. Ali leads these sessions with boundless enthusiasm and great competence, engendering much respect from the sailors, volunteers and staff alike.  

“I’m stunned to be nominated,” comments Ali.  “I feel the Award reflects the wonderful support of Wednesday Junior Sailing from the Royal Lymington Yacht Club and the dedicated volunteers.”  

Tony joined the Lymington Town Sailing Club in 2005. In 2012 he began organising the children’s Saturday morning sailing at nearby Salterns Lake. As a result of his work, the number of children registered for Salterns sailing has increased from 25 to 62 and families have joined the club specifically because of the reputation he has built. Tony persuaded the club to invest in boats to enable young Salterns sailors to graduate to the Lymington River and the Solent, developing a pathway towards continued participation.  He has also arranged for eight of his helpers to take Assistant Instructor courses. His incredible ability to organise and inspire is ensuring that more and more children are learning to sail in a non-pressurised, family-friendly environment.

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“I was absolutely delighted to receive notification of the Award,” said Tony.  “It is an exceptional recognition both personally, and to the club as a whole. A previous Commodore, Nick Ingram, was instrumental in creating a rolling five year plan five years ago and that has led the club to where it is today. We can now boast improved facilities, more club boats, additional training and on the water sessions, increased membership, more children and families than ever before and greater participation. I’m very proud of what the club has achieved in recent years and we have exciting plans for the next couple of years.”