CMYC... The Friendliest Dinghy Sailing Club in Sussex?
We like to think so
The Mariners have a well deserved reputation for being a very friendly club with a relaxed atmosphere, so if you're interested in sailing, do feel free to come and visit us for a chat. Organised events take place on most weekends from March to December, or take advantage of a free trial sail on one of our Open days. Sailing dinghies come in all shapes and sizes (over 100 different Classes at last count). No matter what your weight, shape, age or level of fitness, there will be a class of boat to suit your needs. For members that do not own a boat the Club has a number of boats that can be used.
Commodore's Blog - June 2017
I was reading in my paper today about Mervyn Wheatley, a solo transatlantic yachtsman, who was rescued mid-Atlantic from his yacht following a violent storm. He was picked up by the Queen Mary 2, which had altered course to rescue him. He had previously sailed across the Atlantic 19 times, eight of these single-handed, but had never been on a cruise. Indeed, he had always been somewhat ‘snooty’ he says, about cruise liners. He had now completely changed his mind and enjoyed thoroughly ‘being treated like a prince’.
It reminded me of a time, many years ago, when I was rescued off Seaford when the dinghy I was sailing inverted. My boyfriend, whose previous experience was limited to sailing a Mirror dinghy, had bought a Merlin Rocket, and decided to try it out for the first time on a windy day off the South Coast. I had never been sailing before, but believed that Richard knew what he was doing. How wrong can one be? It was an offshore breeze, and we went off the beach at a cracking pace. All was well until we tried to turn round, and then it all went pear-shaped. We capsized, and quickly inverted, and failed utterly to right the boat. Richard seemed to think that he had to dive down to undo the mainsail from the top of the mast. We were rescued by a fishing vessel, and towed back ashore, watched by hundreds of spectators. The lifeboat had been launched, but we were safe before it arrived. On balance, I think I would have preferred the Queen Mary 2, but shipwrecked mariners can’t be choosers! It was then a further 20 years before I joined CMYC and learnt how to sail properly and that should one’s dinghy invert, it is possible to right it, but it takes time and effort, and should not entail a dramatic rescue! My parents were on the beach watching the drama unfold and were exceedingly displeased with Richard. I did not see much of him after that!
Speaking of learning to sail properly, our Level 1 and 2 and Stage 1 and 2 courses are coming to an end soon and a new batch of beginners will have been taught how to do things correctly. Well done to you all, and a huge thank you to all the instructors who give up their weekends to do the teaching.
We are so lucky at CMYC to have a dedicated band of volunteers who give up their time, week in and week out to look after our club. The only paid staff we have are a team of cleaners who call in once a week and give the clubhouse a quick onceover. From time to time, usually in the Spring and Autumn, we have Work Parties when we ask as many of our members as possible to give up a few hours on a Saturday morning to get some jobs done. The response is always good, so watch this space for the next opportunity to get involved. Also, of course, there is the band of volunteers who turn up at Hedgecourt every Tuesday morning and get stuck into club maintenance, and everyone is always welcome to come along and lend a hand. You may be amazed to see what we get up to!
It wont be long before we will be looking for members who may like to join our committee, so if you are interested in how things are done and how decisions are made, do have a chat with any of the current committee members and perhaps give it some thought for next year.
Now, and this is really important – QUEST PROJECT – We have been awarded a grant by Sport England of £10,000 towards the purchase of two Quest dinghies, and these are so that we can encourage as many people as possible to give sailing a go. Last year we had 275 people sailing at least once with the Mariners, and over the coming twelve months we have committed to trying to encourage at least 400 people to sail. So, there is a blue folder in the clubhouse, on the worktop next to the race box, and when you go sailing, or perhaps take a friend sailing for the first time after 1 June, we ask that you complete one of the forms in the book for each person. You only need to do this once, and it will take just a few seconds. We can then report back to Sport England how we are getting on with getting towards our target 400. Your sail does not, of course, have to be in one of the Quests, and it may be that you sail at Chichester Harbour or elsewhere. It really does not matter where, we just need to count you once.
That’s all for now – just have fun with your sailing and I hope to see you at Hedgecourt one day soon.
More About CMYC
Learning to Sail
DRY MEETINGS. More great talks are planned for this year, keep an eye on your newsletter or read more here