The year’s activities started with two very successful shore-based events. The pre-season visit to Tower Bridge which was so well subscribed that our group had to be split into two tours. Equally successful was a supper and talk from Garth Cooper of East Coast Pilot at Heybridge.
The sailing season got under way at Easter, which this year was in late March. This like many other events in the year needed an adjusted itinerary due to poor weather. Events included a number in each of the Blackwater, the Orwell and the Crouch. Of the planned events further afield only a trip up the East Coast to Lowestoft and Southwold took place and even this was truncated due to appalling weather. Cruises to Chatham and Limehouse were replaced by more local events due to insufficient bookings. Several members made their way to Holland in the season but not as a club group. Half a dozen club boats took themselves off on extended cruises with Brittany, Biscay and Round Britain being of particular note.
The fitting in supper was successfully held at Shotley and RBYC provided the venue for a very enjoyable Laying Down Supper.
Notably the Committee now has a mix of active local sailors able to organise club events and others who are in the UK for only part of the year. Whilst this is undoubtedly healthy for the club it is more onerous on the local sailor members of the team. The Committee was particularly grateful two members (Jeanie Marie and Korina) for their taking on the organisation of events (the London winter event and the Crouch event in August).
We have two Committee retirees this year, Caroline Sheppard and Dave Jones. We are grateful to both for their hard work on behalf of BCC and wish them well in their further adventures.
It is important that the resultant Committee vacancies are filled as soon as possible and that efforts continue to be made to encourage those members who, whilst not wishing to join the Committee, are willing to organise individual events.
The Pontoon Party and New Members’ BBQ despite being held in July wasn’t blessed with great weather. In spite of this, those that attended enjoyed themselves and two new members joined the club.
Whilst the club does not need an enormous number of new members, it is important that we continue with efforts and activities to add new members each year.
The web site and the Facebook page are working reasonably well and we should invest effort in keeping these functional and relevant as well as augmenting these new media channels with more conventional methods (post, posters and picking up the phone).
The Newsletter continues to be well loved by the membership and is now available online as well as in print.
Lastly it just leaves me to say thanks again to everyone on the committee for their hard work and to Gill for putting up with me in general (an in particular in relation to my role in BCC) and of course to all members for their support.
As was evidenced by last night’s Laying Down Supper, BCC is in good shape and definitely deserves our self-proclaimed accolade of being ‘the best little sailing club on the East Coast’.
Keith Swinburne, 13 November 2016
Event ideas for 2017
Now is the time to let me know what you'd like to see on next year's programme. What would you like to see more/less of? What haven't we thought of that you think might work well? The Committee is meeting on 03 December 2016 to pull together the 2017 programme so please get your ideas in before then. We'd be particularly interested to hear from members who'd like to take on the organisation of a 2017 event.
Last winter we had a couple of very successful shore based, off-season, events (the Tower Bridge tour and the East Coast Pilot lecture). We'll endeavour to repeat that success with events in January - March. Anything you'd particularly like to see?
We are delighted to welcome Robert Fisher to the Committee but remind members that we still have one more vacancy on the Committee - now is the time to put yourself forward.
As always, do keep in touch - ideas, suggestions (even complaints) are always welcome.
Wishing you a happy, healthy and enjoyable end to 2016 afloat and ashore,