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Ballyholme Yacht Club on Belfast Lough Returns to the Water

4th April 2021
Ballyholme YC Commodore Aidan Pounder took an early morning open water swim in Ballyhomle Bay
Ballyholme YC Commodore Aidan Pounder took an early morning open water swim in Ballyhomle Bay

Even the weather played ball for the Return to Water at Ballyholme Yacht Club on Belfast Lough this Easter weekend.

And there was no shortage of members keen to get afloat. Commodore Aidan Pounder kicked the day off with an early morning open water swim, and some young Laser sailors wrapped it up.

Taking the first cautious steps, the team at BYC managed to get their members safely back to the water as some outdoor sports were given the green light by the Northern Ireland Executive to recommence from 1st April. Sailing and other watersports have been included but only under strict guidelines. So currently, the clubhouse and therefore changing rooms must remain closed, but boat parks and slipways are now available with restricted numbers and via a booking system only.

One of the main differences from the reopening last year is the two households, ten people restriction, and COVID guidelines have been updated to reflect any changes. So to ensure this is safely managed, sailing slots are available in groups of 10.

Ballyholme Laser sailors out for a sail on Belfast LoughBallyholme Laser sailors out for a sail on Belfast Lough

And if going afloat in a dinghy isn't enough, there are Open Water Swimming sessions, Stand Up Paddleboarding, Kayaking and Diving. The club hopes the training will start again on 12th April, subject to continuing easing of restriction.

Commodore Aidan Pounder whose is delighted to welcome members back to the club; "On our 'Return to Water,' we have posted some guideline details which will be available to access through our website. We very much appreciate your understanding in these initial stages, which we hope will help negate any further disruption to our much-loved activities at the Club. My sincere thanks to you all for your unwavering support in our Club and I look forward to seeing you again very soon".

Published in Belfast Lough
Betty Armstrong

About The Author

Betty Armstrong

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Betty Armstrong is Afloat and Yachting Life's Northern Ireland Correspondent. Betty grew up racing dinghies but now sails a more sedate Dehler 36 around County Down.

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