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17th July 2009

Quoile Yacht Club

The Quoile Yacht Club was founded in Downpatrick at the Quoile Quay, on the then tidal Quoile River, in 1958. When, in 1962, the Ministry of Agriculture built a barrier at Castle Island, to alleviate the regular damaging flooding to which Downpatrick was subjected in times of high tide and heavy rain, they agreed to relocate the club to the seaward side of the barrier. The site was excavated and levelled, and a slipway provided. Thus the Club was reborn on its present site, with sheltered deepwater moorings, space for caravans, clubhouse and parking. After 40 years of investment and improvement the Quoile can boast the best facilities on Strangford Lough.

Quoile Yacht Club, 21 Castle Island Road, Downpatrick, Co. Down BT30 7LD, N. Ireland. Tel: 028 4461 2266, Club Secretary email: [email protected]

(Details courtesy of Quoile Yacht Club) 

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Published in Clubs
17th July 2009

Portrush Yacht Club

Founded in 1894 by a group of boating enthusiasts, the Portrush Yacht Club has grown to be one of the biggest and most successful clubs of its kind in Northern Ireland.

Organised by a dedicated committee of members, the activities of the club are carefully planned to take into account the interests of all its members. For the family, for the beginner, for the experienced or for those who just wish to relax in a convivial club atmosphere, the Portrush Yacht  club offers its members the choice. those who just wish to relax in a convivial club atmosphere, the Portrush Yacht club offers its members the choice.

 
History

The association of Portrush with sailing the sea has a long history. lt certainly goes back to the Viking era, as the name of the line of islets to the northeast of the town – the Skerries – eloquently testifies. But it wasn't until Portrush began to develop its modern character as a holiday town that boating and sailing for fun became part of the summer scene.

This 'new' phase began in the Victorian era, when sailing and rowing races for locals and visitors alike brought new vitality to the harbour era. Portrush Sailing Club reckoned to date from the regattas of the 1860s and 1870s, and by the early years of the 20th Century the club was thriving.

Its character developed further during the 1930s when boats of the Jewel class were brought in from Belfast Lough to provide One Design racing. As well, there was a handicap class, of which the most famous member was the sloop Kitty of Coleraine. Not only was she a successful racer, but as well while sailing one evening she inspired songwriter Jimmy Kennedy to sit down in the Carrig-na-Cule hotel in nearby Portstewart and write Red Sails in the Sunset - that such a famous song was inspired by a little yacht which was in turn named after a famous local song made it all doubly historic, and Kitty of Coleraine is now preserved in the Transport Museum in Belfast.

Meanwhile back in Coleraine after World War II the activities of Portrush Sailing Club reflected the new interest in dinghies, and this reached a most unusual peak after the Flying Dutchman had been selected to be the Olympic dinghy – some members of PSC built themselves three Flying Dutchmen, and for some years these exotic craft were a feature of the north coast, blithely sailing over to Lough Foyle for the Donegal regattas at The Club, by now re-named Portrush Yacht Club, was also into other classes such as Fireballs, Scorpions and GP 14s, but by the beginning of the 1970s decline had set in. Partially this was caused by the growth of facilities at nearby Coleraine. But as well the life of any harbour goes through cyclical phases, and for various reasons the 1970s were a quiet phase for recreational boating in Portrush.

This meant that by 1979 the club was barely in existence, with only six registered members, Yet, only six years later it had undergone a phenomenal revival, with nearly four hundred members and a splendid new clubhouse strategically located right, beside the harbour.

The man who got it all moving again was diving enthusiast Alan Wilson. Until around 1968 he'd run a sub aqua club in Belfast, but shell he moved to Portrush and found, as have so many others, that the north coast is a diver's paradise. The development of this was enough to take up most of his spare time energies throughout the 1970s   but by 1979 he got to thinking about the development of Portrush harbour in its totality for all aspects of waterborne sport, and he reckoned that the first move would be to revive Portrush Yacht Club as a headquarter for all the boat users of the harbour.

So one summer evening he simply went around the harbour area collecting a fiver from everyone he knew who might be interested, and one of those was Arthur Loughrey, who hailed from Coleraine but had settled in Portrush and was interested in a general way in all aspects of boating. In Arthur, Alan found a  kindred spirit, and the two of them made a formidable team. No obstacle was too great to be overcome in the revival of Portrush as a major boating centre, and heaven help anyone who got in the way.

Soon the show was on the road with a Portakabin acquired at a Very knockdown price to serve as a clubhouse. This was all very well, but Alan states bluntly that until they'd managed to get a bar licence, things weren't really moving. Once the bar was in, however, they made hay, thought it wasn't without some nerve-racking moments - one midwinter night, they scheduled a vast fund-raising gala dance, But it snowed and snowed and snowed - very unusual for Portrush. The loss could have been enormous, but all involved agreed to try again a week later, and it was one of the most successful happenings ever seen in the town.

Things then began to move their way. The harbour was given a major face-lift, and with restoration and dredging, the mooring situation improved out of all recognition to give berthing for 130 boats of all sixes.

The boats began to come, and soon the rapidly expanding PYC team began to think of a larger permanent home, They had their eye on a roomy old warehouse on the quayside. Once they'd their eye on something, thanks to the help of Coleraine Borough Council it was only a question of time before they had it, and in April 1985 Portrush Yacht Club moved into a superb building, the total renovation of the premises having been designed by architect Noel Campbell (a former Commodore of Coleraine Yacht Club), incidentally), the work having been carried out by contractors Tom Dallat.

Recounted like that, it all seems a straightfoward business happening remarkably quickly. There is of course even more to it than meets the eye. Portrush Yacht Club in 1985 is a remarkable tribute to enthusiasm, sheer hard work, and delight in boats of all sort - one of the reasons it could grow so healthily was that an active programme afloat was always as central to the club's expansion.

So when at the AGM on Friday October 25th 1985 outgoing Commodore Noel Black handed over to incoming Commodore Barry Thompson, he knew he was giving over the top post in a thriving organisation whose diversity of activity is reflected in its various active sections.

Portrush Yacht Club, 7 Harbour Road, Portrush, Co. Antrim BT56 8DF, N. Ireland. Tel: 028 70 823932 

(Details courtesy of Portrush Yacht Club) 

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Published in Clubs
17th July 2009

Portaferry Sailing Club

History – 1968 to 2009

The Club now based in its clubhouse at 38-40 Shore Road, Portaferry started as Cooke Street Sailing Club in 1968, named after a previous sailing club in the town which ceased operating in 1956. The Club initially provided racing for Wychcraft, a locally designed racing dinghy, and supplied a social base for local sailors and their supporters as well as visiting boat crews from all over the world.

It ran its first Regatta in 1969 and as the years progressed the Club added various classes of boat to its fleet before settling with Flying 15’s as its main and most popular class. In 1970 the Club felt it needed to be more representative of the town as a whole and changed its name to Portaferry Sailing Club

Over the next period of years it developed a junior sailing fleet using optimists and toppers. It also introduced and has developed cruisers racing. This fleet along with the Flying 15’s continues to expand and compete regularly in the Club’s weekly points racing and in local and international sailing events and championships throughout the season.

The Club itself has been responsible over the years for running national and international sailing events and is recognised as an excellent centre for competitive racing in Strangford Lough. Events like the ‘Galway Hooker Regatta’ for traditional boats, run annually at the end of June, have brought worldwide fame and recognition to the Club.

Portaferry Sailing Club was a premier mover and one of the founding organisations in the establishment of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution in Portaferry in 1979. To this day many of our members are on the crew, guild and management committee of the local station. The Club still loyally supports and assists with fundraising.

In 1991 the Club made history when it twinned with Poolbeg Yacht Club in Dublin. This was the first ever twinning of Sailing Clubs and more importantly it was cross border. Close relationships have continued with our friends at Ringsend ever since with many social and sailing visits between the clubs each year.

The Club’s social activities/events have always tried to support and complement events on the water and without the associated financial support the Club could not operate as effectively as it does. In this respect our clubhouse is quite unique and famous for its welcome to visitors to the area. The addition of a restaurant to the bar facilities over ten years ago has made the Club one of the best equipped clubs to cater for its members and visitors in Strangford Lough and indeed Northern Ireland.

Since its establishment the Club has always supported and taken part in the development of sailing in Ireland. It has also helped the local community develop and has added to the social and economic wellbeing of the town and its people.

Location

By road follow the A20 from Newtownards, there are local bus connections from Belfast and the nearest airport is Belfast City.
From the sea Portaferry is 4 miles from the Strangford Fairway buoy, position 54 22 72'N, on the east shore of the narrows position 05 32 85'W, 100 meters south of the ferry slip.
Chart 2156 gives details on Strangford Lough, chart 2159 gives details on the Strangford narrows. High Water Portaferry is + 02 00 hrs Dover / + 01 50 Belfast.
There is a strong tidal flow in the narrows 7.5 Knots Spring.

Club House

Our clubhouse provides changing and showering areas. We have a full range of bar facilities, food is also available from our restaurant. For more information please click on this restaurant link.
To contact the club write to: 38 Shore Road, Portaferry, Co. Down BT22 1JZ, N. Ireland, tel: 028 4272 8770, email: [email protected]

Portaferry Marina

The Marina is managed by Portaferry Development Committee and is situated right outside our clubhouse. It has berths for up to 30 boats, on site water and electricity.

To contact the Marina Office write to: John Murray, Marina Manager, Barholm, 11 The Strand, Portaferry BT22 1PF, tel: 028 4272 9598, mobile: 077 0320 9780, fax: 028 4272 9784.

Additional launching and berth facilities are available at Cook Street Jetty.

(Details courtesy of Portaferry Sailing Club) 

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Published in Clubs
17th July 2009

Newtownards Sailing Club

Newtownards Sailing Club was founded in 1964, following a public meeting in the Town Hall, chaired by Stanley Woods, JP and ex-Mayor of Newtownards, who became the first Vice Commodore, with Lady Mairi Bury as Commodore.

The late Angus Jardine, and Dr David Park who is still a member today, were Rear Commodore and Hon Secretary respectively. Life membership in those days cost a mere £50 – a really good investment!

A site for the clubhouse was leased on the east coast of Strangford Lough about four miles south of Newtownards, and the Mount Stewart Estate, which owned the foreshore, agreed to the lease of a slipway. The original clubhouse, which was in use until 2001, consisted of two post-war prefab asbestos clad bungalows with a central entrance hall between them. The prefabs were bought second-hand in Donaghadee and erected at the Club site entirely by volunteer labour of the members.

A slipway was laid and the clubhouse officially opened on 15th August 1964. The club started with a collection of dinghies racing on handicap, mainly Scorpions, Enterprises, Mirrors and Cadets. Regattas in those days were well attended, with on one occasion nearly 200 entrants – River class, Glen class, Flying 15s, Lightnings, Dragons as well as the dinghies.

Over the years the mix of dinghies and cruisers has varied; today the club has one of the largest and most active GP14 fleets in Ireland, lots of windsurfers, and a dozen or so cruisers.

In 2001 the changing room facilities were modernised with the aid of a helpful grant from the Ards BC. In 2006 the prefab function room was demolished and a fine new two-storey function room and bar with kitchen and and office was built, again with the assistance of a useful grant from the Ards BC. This was officially opened by the Mayor of Ards, Cllr Angus Carson and attended by many invited guests on 7th October 2006.

The eagle, an interpretation of which appears on the club burgee, is that of the de Courcys who invaded Ulster in the twelfth century. John de Courcy built the castle round which Newtownards developed. The eagle appears within the crest of the town of Newtownards.

Newtownards Sailing Club, 161 Portaferry Road, Newtownards, Co. Down BT22 2AJ, N. Ireland

(Details courtesy of Newtownards Sailing Club) 

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Published in Clubs
17th July 2009

Newcastle Yacht Club

Newcastle Yacht Club, South Promenade, Newcastle, Co. Down BT33 0EY, N. Ireland. Tel: +44 (0)28 4372 6515

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Published in Clubs
17th July 2009

Kircubbin Sailing Club

The Club premises were formally leased ot the Club in 1954 by the Allen family, together with the rights to all relevant sailing activities in Kircubbin Bay. 

Kircubbin Sailing Club, Ards Peninsula, Strangford Lough, Co. Down, N. Ireland. Email: [email protected], tel: Clubhouse 028 427 38422, Secretary 028 427 98050, post: The Secretary, Kircubbin Sailing Club, 106 Shore Road, Kircubbin, Co. Down BT22 2RP, N. Ireland

(Details courtesy of Kircubbin Sailing Club) 

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Published in Clubs
17th July 2009

Holywood Yacht Club

Holywood Yacht Club is a Recognised Teaching Centre (RTC). As such it is permitted to run RYA Courses using qualified RYA Instructors and standards are maintained by regular inspections.
Qualifications gained on RYA courses are widely recognised.

The Club welcomes new members of all ages and is well known for being family-friendly and down-to-earth. Throughout the year members organise an entertainments programme which centres around the club-house bar and hall with their fabulous views over Belfast Lough. Events have included barbecues, lectures, live music and quiz nights. Everyone is welcome.

For further information email: [email protected]

Holywood Yacht Club, The Esplanade, Holywood, Co. Down. Email: [email protected]

(Details courtesy of Holywood Yacht Club) 

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Published in Clubs
17th July 2009

Greystones Sailing Club

main-1.jpegLeft: Sunday Juniors at Greystones SC, 2009

Founded in 1968, Greystones Sailing Club has established a reputation as one of the top dinghy sailing clubs in Ireland. Its sailors have competed successfully in many open events over the years, both nationally and internationally. With over 300 members sailing a variety of dinghy classes, Greystones Sailing Club offers exciting and enjoyable dinghy racing for all ages and abilities and looks forward to welcoming keel boat members when the harbour facilities in Greystones are upgraded.

The club has an active training and sailing program providing sailing instruction for about 100 local children and 30 adults every year with on going class specific training for other members. Powerboat, VHF, First-Aid and Sailing Instructor courses are also run on an ad-hoc basis and are open to non-members. GSC also offers St David's Secondary School transition year students introductory Sailing courses.

Greystones Sailing Club has played host to a number of prestigious sailing events at International, National and Regional levels. It has organised and run Championship events for the Mirror, Enterprise, GP14 and Wayfarer classes. Greystones has been at the forefront of modern dinghy racing, introducing the RS dinghy classes into Ireland and for three of the last five years, hosting one leg of the internationally renowned RS Eurocup circuit.

(The above information and image courtesy of Greystones Sailing Club) 

Greystones Sailing Club, Club Secretary, North Beach, Greystones, Co. Wicklow. Email: [email protected] 

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Published in Clubs
17th July 2009

East Belfast Yacht Club

East Belfast Yacht Club was founded by workers from the Belfast Shipyards in 1904, and has enjoyed both the high and the low years through its existence. From the high points through the 1920s/30s/40s and '50s when the Club hosted many sailing races and entertained the owners and masters of the massive J-Class yachts down to the more plentiful and massively supported Belfast Lough one designs through to the Flying Fifteens and Dragons and others of the various periods.

The Club was previously situated at the head of Belfast Lough near the now defunct oil refinery on the South shore but has been based on the present site in Sydenham Embayment between The Belfast City Airport and Victoria Park since 1939.

More recent activities have been more towards the Cruising side of Yachting with boats being built and refurbished at our base at Sydenham Embayment and used to cruise the Inland Loughs, the Irish Sea, The Med and indeed through Europe and across to the America's.

We have become established as the main non professional producer and knowledge base for boats built from Ferro-cement in Ireland, and have had visitors from many countries in Europe who wished to avail of our knowledge on the subject. A past Member and his good lady were the first to introduce the method to Sydenham around 1970 and through a system of trial and error and the study of other builders down through the years we have had boats built by our members using just about every method known. Current build numbers are somewhere in the 30s, some of which have been own designs and some modifications of existing designs.

As a Club we have always been proud of our working class roots and welcome prospective new members who wish to pursue their dreams of building from scratch or renovating existing hulls, be they Ferro, Wood, Steel or GRP. We are now more associated with 'traditional' type boats and building rather than the modern GRP types, although we have members also experienced in this type of construction.

East Belfast Yacht Club, Sydenham By-Pass, Belfast, Co. Down BT3 9HR. Tel: 028 90 812658/077 597 81281

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Published in Clubs
17th July 2009

Down Cruising Club

Down Cruising Club is a small, friendly club of approximately 100 members, who are interested in all aspects of boating and cruising on Strangford Lough. The club is fortunate to be based at Ballydorn, on Strangford Lough, and to enjoy the unique facility of club headquarters in the form of the lightship "Petrel". A short history of the club and of the Lightship can be accessed. In addition the club enjoys the facility of Ballydorn Quay, constructed in the mid 19th century, and its associated historic quayside store, the 'Black Shed'.

Club members participate in a wide range of social events on board "Petrel", and water-based activities, including cruises both within and beyond Strangford Lough. An important feature of membership of the club is maintenance of the lightship itself, through regular work parties. The general ethos of 'hands-on' involvement transfers to all activities, and to regular duties in assisting the club's bar.

Down Cruising Club, c/o Clubship Petrel, 52 Ballydorn Road, Killinchy, Newtownards BT23 6QB. Tel: +4428 9754 1663

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Published in Clubs
Page 10 of 15

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