Above: the crew of Cork at the beginning of the Clipper Race 2009
Lough Swilly Yacht Club
Lough Swilly Yacht Club is based in Fahan Creek on the shores of Lough Swilly, Co Donegal, three miles from Buncrana and ten miles from Derry.
Our membership consists of IRC-racing and cruising sailors as well as powerboat enthusiasts and some keen dinghy sailors. All club members enjoy spending time pottering about on the lough and many like to venture further afield; either to cruise or to represent the club in competition (see the Ships' Blog section for more).
The Lough Swilly Yacht Club was founded in February, 1955, when a meeting took place in the old City Hotel, with a view to forming a 'club' to encourage sailing and power boating in Lough Swilly by every possible means.
The first Officers of the club were: Commodore Dr. T.E. Hastings. Vice Commodore James McColgan. Rear Commodore Stephen Faller. Secretary Mayne Elliot and Treasurer Norvall Watt. A Committee was set up of men who between them had a wealth of sailing experience and whose enthusiasm and sheer hard work laid the firm foundation of today's thriving club.
The club was fortunate to have as a founder member Mr. James Whyte, Manager of the Lough Swilly Railway Co. and when the railway line from Derry to Buncrana closed in 1953 the club was able to purchase for a very nominal sum the old station waiting room and ticket office, as well as a considerable amount of ground where the old railway line ran beside the water's edge. This formed the nucleus of the present club and in subsequent years the slipway was built and extended, the caravan site erected and the clubhouse itself took in the old station house.
The first racing took place at 3.30pm (Swilly time) on Opening Day, Saturday 2nd July 1955, and there was a fine turnout of miscellaneous craft. After the day's racing all members and friends were invited to afternoon tea at the temporary club premises on the Railway Station Platform in Fanad, durning which prizes were awarded.
(The above information and image courtesy of Lough Swilly Yacht Club.