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14th July 2009

Skerries Sailing Club

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Overlooking scenic island-studded waters, Skerries is a vibrant and fast growing dinghy and cruiser club for adults and children. Racing (May-December) three times weekly in high season. Adult, children, newcomers to sailing and family members are especially welcomed. The bar has remarkable sea views. Slipway, car/boat park and punt service to moorings. We offer ISA Dinghy courses for children from beginners to Advanced Boat Handling and Racing 1 as well as ISA Dinghy courses for adults from beginners to Improving Skills plus Powerboat and Safetyboat courses.

SSC prides itself on its friendly atmosphere. Newcomers to sailing are warmly welcomed. A small fleet of adult and junior dinghies is available to newcomers at nominal rates to help them improve their sailing. Friendly coaching is also available. In 2008, SSC celebrated the 75th anniversary of its foundation in 1933.

In addition we are hosting three regional, national and international events for Optimists, Mirrors and Wayfarers. For details of events click the appropriate button on the left.

The affairs of Skerries Sailing Club are governed by its officers and a committee, totalling 12. The committee is chaired by a Commodore elected directly by the membership at the club's Annual General Meeting. The membership also approves the committee on an annual basis. The officers and committee are listed on the Committee page. The notice for the latest Annual General Meeting is provided on the AGM page.

Administration of the club is guided by its constitution. The text of the Constitution is available on the Constitution page of the website.

 

Skerries Sailing Club, Harbour Road, Skerries, Co. Dublin. Tel: +353 1 849 1233, email: [email protected]

or c/o Siobhan Boylan, Bayview, 15 Harbour Road, Skerries 

 

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Published in Clubs
14th July 2009

Lough Derg Yacht Club

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Lough Derg Yacht Club, founded in 1835, is situated in Dromineer, close to Nenagh, in Co Tipperary.

Day membership is available to visitors to the club and adult sailing classes are available for non-members. The club offers great sailing and cruising for all types of boats. Dingy classes sailed include Optimist, Mirrors, Lasers, 420s and the Shannon One Design.

Fishermen at the club are always willing to lend their knowledge and skill to visitors and new members.

The Clubhouse hosts many formal and informal social gatherings the highlight of which is the Midsummers Night Ball.

Children and teenagers receive excellent tuition during the junior sailing courses, which can lead to ISA instructor qualifications.

The annual regatta is the highlight of the sailing calendar for adults and children combing racing with a vibrant social scene.

Dromineer Bay is a regular venue for regional and national sailing competitions hosted by the club.

 

Lough Derg Yacht Club, Dromineer, Co. Tipperary. Tel (clubhouse): 067 244 55, (membership secretary): 067 222 66, email: [email protected] or [email protected] (membership)

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Published in Clubs
14th July 2009

Sutton Dinghy Club

History

right.jpgSince the turn of the century, sailors in the Sutton Creek area had made various attempts to establish a club, and around 1930 an liaison was formed with Howth Sailing club, with meetings and social events taking place in the Howth club premises, and actual dinghy sailing taking place in Sutton Creek. As the yachtsmen in Howth and Dun Laoghaire turned their attention more towards the larger keelboats, local dinghy enthusiasts took the opportunity to 'go it alone'. Early in May 1940, Sutton Dinghy Club was launched, adding to the growing list of East Coast sailing clubs.

For the first ten years of its existence, the members used a small boathouse loaned by Desmond Keatinge, the first Captain (the club could not afford a Commodore at that time!). With Desmond at the helm, the committee got down to the task of introducing a fleet of boats to convince well wishers that the club was really alive, and seven International 12 ft. Dinghies sailed their first race under the new club burgee, which was (and still is) blue with a white silhouette of the International 12ft dinghy. The 'Twelves' no longer race here (but one member has just brought one back this year!), and the burgee is a reminder of those early days.

left.jpg The official opening of the new clubhouse took place on June 1st, 1951, by Douglas Heard, the then President of the Irish Dinghy Racing Association (later the Irish Yachting Association, now the Irish Sailing Association). The boat park (or 'Hardspace') could originally only accommodate six dinghies, but was increased to between thirty and forty over the following years. In 1967 the hardspace was increased to its present size, and the clubhouse was extended in 1980 to provide the function room and better changing facilities, which were further developed again during 1986, to improve the quality of life ashore! The boats on the hard are also changing: the International 'Twelves' were soon joined by the IDRA14s, then Hornets, Enterprises, Fireballs, Mirrors, GP14s, Optimists and Lasers, among others, became part of the ever-evolving scene at Sutton Dinghy Club.

The membership also evolved- Sutton sailors were family men and women, and their children inevitably took to the waters. Over the years, Junior sailing and Junior training became more and more an important aspect of the Club activities. At the same time, sailors everywhere sought to improve the enjoyment of their sport by providing a safer environment, particularly for novices: rescue boats and equipment were bought and put into service in every Club. The Sutton Dinghy Club fleet now consists of three boats: a 16-foot Workboat and two Sea Rider 14-foot semi-rigid inflatable rescue launches.

center.jpg One of the Sutton Dinghy Club members who spoke on the subject at length at that AGM was Hugh Gill, who has been representing the Club at the top national and international level of the GP14 fleet. At that time, Hugh was involved with the Irish National Sailing School (INSS), who operated out of Dun Laoghaire. He discussed the situation both with his INSS colleagues and with the Club Commodore, Charles Sargent, and his Committee. These discussions eventually resulted in an agreement to extend the INSS activities to the north side of the Bay, basing a fleet of dinghies and a rescue boat in Sutton Dinghy Club. These boats were used to provide sailing courses, both for the general public, and for Club members. This arrangement, which was designed to be of benefit to both the Club and the INSS, achieved the following:

· broadened the appeal of sailing to the wider public

· developed Sutton Dinghy Club as a base for sailing tuition

· encouraged full take-up of sailing courses on offer

· promoted Club membership among course graduates

· increased Club sailing by providing a fleet of dinghies for charter

The agreement provided an ongoing series of Adult Sailing Courses, and Junior introductory courses, throughout the sailing season, which attracted many graduates to take up Club membership. In addition, the full ISA Junior Training programme was provided for Sutton Dinghy Club junior members, using the Club rescue boats in addition to the INSS boat. This initial venture with the INSS was so successful that the Club decided to continue the concept, but under the full control of its membership, and in conjunction with a FAS-sponsored Community Employment Project.

As the Club activities expanded, and membership numbers expanded beyond the existing capacity for boat parking, discussion among members centred around the need for a long-term plan for the club in order to ensure its survival and viability beyond the millennium. The latest development provides an additional 750 sq metres of parking for boats and cars, to cater for the existing membership numbers.

The level and extent of Club activity increased with the housing developments locally, and the Club facilities were developed over the years to meet the changing aspects of dinghy sailing in Sutton:

1960s: Increased membership, increasing number of boats involved

Action: Leased area extended (50-60 boats)

1970s: Greater concentration on social aspect of membership

Action: Clubhouse improved to provide social room & showers

1980s: Club involved in hosting National and Regional championships

Action: Extension to changing rooms and viewing balcony

1990s: Malicious attacks on Clubhouse, Rescue Boats and members' boats

Action: Erected security fence and steel container for rescue boats

2000s: Insufficient parking space for members' boats

Action: Extended existing 'hard' to provide additional boat & car parking

Some things don't change: every year, in conjunction with the Royal Cork Yacht Club, there are inter-club team races for both junior and senior sailors on a 'home and away' basis. For each winning team, there is a most unique prize – they get to keep custody for twelve months of the 'Book', which is a written account, added to year by year, of each race and the teams involved. This sixty-year-old saga (apart from a few gaps here and there when weather or illness intervened) of friendly rivalry between these two Clubs includes many sailors who went on to become internationally-renowned names in the sailing world – read this Book to understand where Harold Cudmore learned his tactical skills – by bitter experience when racing against the Sutton sailors!
 

The Club today 

Sailing from Sutton Dinghy Club has improved significantly since 2007. The new boat park extension provides easy access to over 100 boat spaces. This is a wonderful resource, and it is marvellous to see new and restored boats joining the Senior fleets.

Junior level sailors are eager to attend club racing and improve their skills. Our summer courses continue to thrive under the ever enthusiastic stewardship of Hugh Gill. The combination of fun, learning and activity, often at a frenetic pace, is inspiring to see. I, on behalf of the members, extend grateful thanks to both the staff in the club and the 'beach parents' who facilitate these wonderful courses each year.

We look forward to the continued challenge of increasing the number of active sailors on the water, providing training in sailing, power boat handling and race management, allowing us to enjoy our fantastic sailing environment at Sutton Creek.

The various committees are busy throughout the year ensuring that we all enjoy our club whether afloat or ashore. They deserve our thanks and on your behalf I do so gladly. Between the sailing and social events there is something for everyone to enjoy.

To quote that great authority on all things boating: "There is nothing", said the Water Rat (in The Wind in the Willows), "absolutely nothing, half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats... in boats – or with boats... in or out of 'em, it doesn't matter!"

(The above information and images courtesy of Sutton Dinghy Club) 

 
Sutton Dinghy Club, Strand Road, Sutton, Dublin 13. Tel: 01 839 3135, fax: 01 839 0174, email: [email protected]

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Published in Clubs

History

The first Glandore Classic Boat Regatta was held in 1992 under the flag of Glandore Harbour Yacht Club. It was held over a long week-end and the combination of the venue – Glandore harbour’s natural amphitheatre – the warm welcome and the growing interest in traditional boats, ensured its success. It attracted a fleet of local and overseas traditional and classic boats, notable among which were the Galway Hookers, Paddy Barry’s St. Patrick – since lost in Glandore – and Michael Brogan’s MacDuach. A number of features of the first regatta, including the Sunday Parade of Sail, have lasted to the present day.

The 1994 regatta built on the success of the first. It was opened by the President Mary Robinson and saw the running of the first Glandore Summer School, which included lectures, exhibitions and demonstrations on the traditional boats of Ireland. The Sunday night fireworks display was introduced in 1994 and has been a feature ever since.

The Classic Boat Regattas of 1996 and 1998 also included the Summer School during the preceding week with the boat events largely at the weekend. These years saw the start of the growth of a West Cork traditional boat revival, with Liam Hegarty’s Shamrock and other replica boats. The Ilen, another historic Baltimore-built boat, recently returned from the Falkland islands, was the star of the 1998 regatta.

2001 saw a change of name to Glandore Classic Regatta and the arrival of a major sponsor Venson plc. A sparkling fleet of classic yachts was attracted to the regatta, including our old friend, the Fife Solway Maid and Blue Leopard. In 2001 we also saw the arrival of fleets, the Water Wags doing formation sailing under the baton of Hal Sisk and the first of the Heir Island Sloops, who have become regulars at the Classic Regatta since then. The Elsa and Querida also turned up and had a thrilling personal derby. The Fastnet Race for the bigger boats was added to the programme in 2001.

The fleet motif was continued in 2003 when 15 boats of the Howth 17 Class came to Glandore for a week of sailing, cruising and carousing. The Heir Island Sloops arrived in strength for a week-long regatta and the traditional west Cork types, including the Heir Island Lobster Yawls, were also represented. A fleet of the aristocrats of the classic circuit the Wm. Fife designed yachts, included our old friend Solway Maid, Sincerity and Clio, and also the Cork Harbour One Designs, Jap, Maureen and Elsa. The Fastnet race where Sincerity and Clio battled it out to finish within minutes of one another, was a feature of the 2003 regatta.

The 2005 regatta fleets were augmented by the SOD's the Shannon One designs who enjoyed four days of glorious fleet racing and the inaugural Irish Classic dragon Championship.

The Classic Regatta has developed since 1992 into an outstanding event where the masterpieces of the great age of sail mingle with traditional West Cork workboats for a week of sailing and spectacle. The closing parade of sail and fireworks display have become a must-see on the sailing calendar. This year, 2009, promises to be a great event once again. 

Glandore Harbour Yacht Club – mail/post to: Claire Thompson, The Old Craft Shop, Leap, Co. Cork. Tel: +353 28 34676; or club (for contact during the Regatta only please): +353 28 33640

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Published in Clubs
14th July 2009

Cobh (Cove) Sailing Club

In the early years of the nineteenth-century, yachting in Cork harbour was the exclusive privilege of the Royal Cork Yacht Club, which raced the yachts of the former J Class: Valkeirie, White Heather, Britannia, Kaisarine, Shamrock, etc. All raced in Cobh and many of the visiting yachts picked up their crews from the natives of the town. The need for a smaller type of yacht being felt, it was decided by some to build a class peculiar to local requirements and conditions.

The class was designed by Fife (FYFE) of Scotland and was known as 'Cork Harbour One Design'. Those boats where built in Carraigaloe (eight in number), Passage West (three) and one was built in Baltimore in west Cork. The emergence of this class brought about the idea for a club for those whose social rating and financial resources could not measure up to the Royal Cork Yacht Club membership and/or class racing. Almost everyone in Cobh owned or could come by some sort of boat, which could sail. Fishing yawls and Hookers were common. In 1904, some stalwarts formed a club and sporadic racing was held. This club was simply known as 'The Sailing Club' as distinct from RCYC

The names of the following: Harry Hoare, Rubin Robinson, Tom Dick Carmody, Jack Aherne, Alex Telford, Tom Farnell, Jack Victury, took to the sea. But the outbreak of World War I (1914–1918) finished or nearly finished racing by the J Class in Cobh and only the one design were left to carry on. Some time in early 1919 the above mentioned men, now joined by Jack Pluck, Bill Horgan, Atwell Allen (Jnr) – all sailing nondescript types of boats – founded Cove Sailing Club. The name Cove came from the old name of the town: 'Cove of Cork' which in turn was called Queenstown after the visit of Queen Victoria in the year 1849. Other members in those early years included Walter Steptoe, Will Cull and Thomas Farrell.

In the 1930s the East Beach Corinthians Sailing Club was formed by Frank O'Regan, Jim Denar, etc., and catered for those small boys who could rise to a new boat, with a window blind or a 'Players please' shop window cover for a sail as well as the more affluent who had sails.

Some of the CSC members: notably Tom 'Dick' Carmody took a keen interest in the kids; and a character called Smith used to hold regattas for them. Those where the days, when every person in Cobh had the same ambition to sail his own boat, and it didn't matter what sort of boat it was.

The East Beach Corinthians Sailing Club went from strength to strength and in the late 1940s, a number of lads built the T class (a do-it-yourself job about 12 feet LOWL). Those who where fortunate enough to own one of these boats felt they were now a cut above the ones who only had punts. The outbreak of World War II (1939–1945) again depleted the members of ESBC. To save it from complete collapse ESBC was incorporated into Cove Sailing Club in 1948.

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

 
Cobh Sailing Club, PO Box 12, Cobh, Co. Cork. Email: [email protected]

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Published in Clubs

History

The Club was formed in 1899 by an amalgamation of the Ulster Sailing Club with the Cultra Yacht Club, and was initially called the North of Ireland Yacht Club. It retained that title until 2 September 1902 when His Majesty King Edward VII was graciously pleased to command that the Club be henceforth known as 'The Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club.'

The Club has attractive seafront premises in Cultra. The buildings have been extended and adapted over the years to provide the facilities required for all the Clubs activities. In the first half of the 20th Century the Club encouraged lawn tennis, croquet and other social activities, and even ran timed automobile trials for the more adventurous spirits. However sailing has obviously always been the main activity of the club. The good holding ground for the swinging moorings in front of the clubhouse is complimented by the clubs boatyard and slipway.

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Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club and Optimist dinghies preparing to launch for an Ulster Championship race. Photo: Thomas Anderson

In 1902 several club members got together and commissioned the Fairy Class racing dayboat design. This Class has been sailed locally since then and although some of the boats migrated to Lough Erne the Class is still strongly supported at Cultra.  Some of the boats have been substantially rebuilt in recent years. Club members have always been ready to accept new designs and in the 1930s the then new Dragon Class was adopted.

There was no club sailing during World War II but it was RNIYC members in the Dragon Class who represented Britain in the 1947 Olympic Games at Torbay. The 1970s saw the arrival of the Squib Class. The popularity of these boats has fluctuated over the years but, with thirty five boats, the Clubs fleet is now one of the largest in the British Isles.

Club racing for the Fairy, Squib and Mirror Classes and for other dinghies takes place on three occasions every week during the sailing season. Many Club members own cruising boats. Nowadays they keep them in local marinas or in Strangford Lough. Racing for the Cruisers used to include passage races organised jointly with the Clyde Cruising Club; however, these races are generally no longer popular and most cruiser racing currently is of the inshore variety. Nevertheless some of the Clubs boats can regularly been seen competing at Cork Week and in the Scottish series. Many of the Club's cruisers voyage far afield to foreign destinations whilst most enjoy the pleasure of taking their families to ports in N. Ireland and the nearby Scottish west coast and Isles.

The future of RNIYC lies in the hands of the extremely active and enthusiastic cadets who now number over one hundred.

clip_image002_005.jpg The Club is fortunate in its location. It lies between the two centres of greatest population density in Northern Ireland and good transport links from both abroad and locally make it easy for visiting competitors to reach the excellent sailing area. The Club has in recent years hosted the Edinburgh Cup, the Squib Nationals, Mirror Irish Nationals as well as other prestigious events. The racing is always keen while functions ashore are supported with suitable entertainment and excellent club catering to suit all tastes. The Club is constantly striving to improve facilities both on and off the water.

(Details and images courtesy of the Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club) 

 

Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club, 7 Seafront Road, Cultra, Co Down BT18 0BB, N. Ireland. Office: 028 9042 8041   Bar: 028 9042 2257   Caterer:   028 9042 4352   Email: [email protected]adsl.co.uk

 

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Published in Clubs
14th July 2009

Lough Neagh Sailing Club

Lough Neagh Sailing Club is situated at the southern end of the largest inland waterway in the British Isles. The racing area is superb and also offers an exciting – but safe – cruising ground with access to the open sea via the Lower Bann.

Founded in 1877, the club had 30 members by 1888, each paying 10/s. per annum.

We are now based in Kinnego Marina at the south end of Kinnego Bay. This is the largest and most modern marina on the Lough and we are well provided with excellent support services from Craigavon Borough Council and chandlery, boat sales and repair services provided by CarrickCraft.

We’re just one minute off Junction 10 (Lurgan) on the M1 Motorway. Follow the directions to Oxford Island and then turn off into Kinnego Marina. Lough Neagh Sailing Club is situated to the left of the main Harbourmasters office.

Lough Neagh Sailing Club, Kinnego Marina, Oxford Island, Craigavon, Co. Armagh

 
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Published in Clubs
14th July 2009

Royal Irish Yacht Club

“Some things in life extend beyond ordinary experience – the Royal Irish Yacht Club is such a place, once enjoyed it can only be equalled by return.”

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The painting of the Royal Irish Yacht Club (above) is an extract from a larger painting of the club from the marina by one of the RIYC members, Desmond McCarthy.

For the latest RIYC news click HERE

Part of Club life is availing of the magnificent Clubhouse facilities where you can meet new people and develop lasting friendships. The Club hosts a wide variety of social events throughout the calendar year making it easy to keep in touch with fellow yachtsmen and women. As well as the regular scheduled events the Club caters for parties to celebrate the holidays, informal events, educational seminars, theme dinners, and all occasions. All this and more is brought to you by our highly qualified and professional catering team.

We are extremely proud of our catering department that facilitates all types of gatherings, both formal and casual, and always to the highest quality and standard. We have a number of venues within the Club each of which provide a different ambience to match your particular needs.

The Dining Room – This elegant room is steeped in club tradition. The décor creates an atmosphere of elegance and is the perfect venue for fine dining. Our menu offers a blend of the finest international cuisine using the freshest local produce. This is complemented by a fine selection of fine wines and unobtrusive friendly service. We know our kitchen will help you discover many culinary treasures.

The Upper Bar – A great meeting place for members. Relax with a glass of wine beside the fire and enjoy good conversation and the intimate surroundings. Our bar staff is committed to good service

The Drawing Room – A comfortable lounge tastefully decorated. Use it to relax and read the daily papers and journals. Bring a friend for tea/drinks. In winter the fires are ablaze creating that special warm atmosphere. This room is also used for cocktail receptions and private parties. We also provide daily a Traditional Afternoon Tea.

The Library – Recently restored has a wealth of sailing knowledge on its shelves. This Room is frequently used for meetings, seminars, business meetings, briefings, launches and small conferences. Reap the highest level of achievement in a traditionally peaceful and undisturbed working enviroment. It is the perfect private dining venue, for parties from 10 to 40, or cocktail receptions.

The Wet Bar – The venue for ‘many occasions’, The Wet Bar, since its refurbishment, has become the flagship for our function department as well for our Casual Dining programme. It is a multi-faceted room and can host a multitude of different functions. It is ideal for banquets, birthday celebrations, dinner/dances, weddings etc can also can be converted into a bistro for theme events and culinary journeys. It has a maximum seating capacity of 140. The centre of the room is dominated by a hi tech bar which sets the tone for intimate yet informal dining experiences. Our catering department will supply you with a comprehensive list of our extensive range of menus. We tailor make every function to suit your needs.

Weddings – The Dining Room at the Royal Irish is an ideal venue for your wedding reception. Beautifully decorated with old world charm, Waterford crystal chandeliers and exquisite views of Dublin Bay create the perfect setting. We cater for up to 90 guests. Superlative cuisine and unparalled service are the order of the day with waiter service all evening.

The Deck – the Club’s ‘al fresco’ venue. Relax and enjoy Irelands balmy days overlooking the Bay and the yacht basin. It is ever popular on Sunny evenings watching the sun set and enjoying the ambience of our wonderful club.

Sailing Suppers and Barbeques – During the sailing season we serve sailing suppers in the Wet Bar on Thursday and Saturday Evenings. Great food, great vibes after a great sail. In Good weather we serve BBQs on the deck for the yachtsmen returning from their evening sail.

(All details and image courtesy of the Royal Irish Yacht Club) 

 

Royal Irish Yacht Club, Harbour Road, Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin. Tel: 01 280 9452, fax: 01 284 2470, emai: [email protected]

 
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Published in Clubs

The club was born in 1965, but was conceived long before then in the Crofton Hotel (where the BIM offices now stand). It was there that a number of owners who were not members of any club and who kept their boats haphazardly in the Inner Harbour or in the Coal Harbour used to meet.

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Above: Frosbite series, 2009

It was at the suggestion of Joe Briscoe, our founder commodore, that the formation of a proper club was considered and with a subscription of £1 each he raised a fund of £30. With this and the help of a dedicated band the task was tackled.

Meetings with official bodies, plans and more plans, articles of association, planning permissions – horrendous problems were tackled and solved. The then harbour master, Commander Thompson suggested the present site while members gave their services free of charge. Amongst there were architect Brian Doran, heating engineer Cecil Buggy, civil engineer Jim Hegarty and many, many others who donated their skills.

Big money was then needed so, to supplement grants and loans, a water carnival was run which attracted 25,000 people to Dun Laoghaire and yielded £2,000 – undreamed of success. It was repeated the following year.

The club was finally built and has since undergone a number of modifications including the building of the slip and the dinghy park. We owe a great debt of gratitutude to our founder members whose names are honourably inscribed on a board over the stairway.

The Club was named to indicate that it catered for all types of craft and for all types of people - the only common denominator being that they get their enjoyment from boating.

So if your leisure pleasure is serious sailing or just ‘messing about in boats’ and if you are looking for friendly companionship which will last a lifetime - welcome aboard!

(Above information and image courtesy of the Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club)

 
Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club, West Pier, Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin. Tel: 01 280 1371

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Published in Clubs

rcyc

The Royal Cork Yacht Club  

History

Some time in the early 1600s, the idea of sailing for private pleasure started to take root in the Netherlands. Later that century, during the Cromwellian years, King Charles II of England was in exile in the Netherlands and while there he became aware of this new and exciting pastime. In 1660 after his restoration to the English crown and return from exile, Charles was presented with a yacht called Mary by the Dutch, which he sailed enthusiastically on the Thames. Soon several of his courtiers followed his example and we feel pretty certain that one of them was Murrough O’Brien, the 6th Lord Inchiquin (Murrough of the Burnings). We know that not only had he attended the court of King Charles from 1660 to 1662, but also that he had been created the 1st Earl of Inchiquin by Charles in 1664. We also know that private sailing started to become popular in Cork Harbour shortly after his return, quite possibly because of his direct encouragement. In any case, by 1720, interest in the sport had progressed so much that his great-grandson, the 26 year old William O’Brien, the 9th Lord Inchiquin, and five of his friends got together to formalise their activities and in so doing established ‘The Water Club of the Harbour of Cork'. This club is known today as the Royal Cork Yacht Club and it is the oldest yacht club in the world.

They based themselves in a castle on Hawlbowline Island, the lease of which Lord Inchiquin held. From that castle they regulated their sailing, membership and dining affairs according to a set of rules known to us today as ‘The Old Rules’.

In the early years the majority of club sailing activity took the form of sailing in various formations, copying the manoeuvres of the navies of the day. They communicated with each other by means of flying different flags and firing cannons. Each display and sequence of flags or guns meant something and every yacht owner carried a common signal book on board, which allowed them to communicate with each other. Paintings from 1738 in the possession of the club show club yachts carrying out such manoeuvres.

Shortly before 1806 the club moved to the nearby town of Cove as the British Admiralty decided that they had a greater need for Hawlbowline Island than we had. The American Revolution and then later on the French Revolution, would have been significant factors in the Royal Navy’s decision to build up their presence in the safe and strategic harbour of Cork. Kinsale had been the main naval centre on this coast up until this time but that harbour had begun to silt badly causing problems for warships which in addition had become bigger with deeper draughts.

By 1806 the Water Club of the Harbour of Cork had started to refer to itself as the Cork Harbour Water Club. During the 1820s, following the fashion of the few other clubs that had emerged by then, it changed its name to include the word ‘Yacht’ and dropped the word ‘Water’ and became known as the Cork Harbour Yacht Club. Later on that decade it dropped ‘Harbour’ and became the Cork Yacht Club. In 1831 King William IV granted the club the privilege of using the prefix ‘Royal’ and it became known as the Royal Cork Yacht Club.

The Club had been using various premises in Cove as clubhouses but eventually, in 1854, it moved into a magnificent new building which it had built on land given to it by the then Admiral, J.H. Smith Barry. The building, which stands directly onto the waterfront, was to become not only a major yachting centre but also an essential meeting place for Cork society.

By mid century membership was keenly sought after and club records show that many candidates were disappointed. One who was fortunate to be admitted was Prince Ferdinand Maximilian of Austria, later to be Emperor of Mexico. Prince Ferdinand was a brother of Emperor Franz Joseph and was the founder of the Imperial Austrian Navy. A special meeting of the General Committee was convened on 30th November 1858 to consider if Prince Ferdinand should be allowed to go forward for ballot for membership. It was felt by many of the members that ‘the admission of Foreigners’ into the club might cause the Lords of the Admiralty to withdraw some of our privileges. After the matter was discussed for some time he was allowed to go forward and was in due course electedand admitted.

One of the very first sporting heroes, Sir Thomas Lipton, who challenged for the America’s Cup sailing his famous series of yachts called Shamrock, was admitted to the club in 1900.

By the 1960s changing economic and social patterns made Cobh less and less attractive as a base for the club. In 1966 the Royal Cork and the Royal Munster Yacht Clubs agreed to merge and the Royal Cork moved to its present premises in Crosshaven assuming the title ‘The Royal Cork Yacht Club, incorporating the Royal Munster Yacht Club’.

In the 1970s and 80s the very pinnacle of sailing competition was the Admirals Cup which was an international competition based on teams of three boats. The Royal Cork was the pivotal point for the very competitive Irish teams of those years, the right designer, builders, sail maker, crews, and owners with vision all came together at the same time and gave nations with greater resources cause for reflective thought.

The Royal Cork Yacht Club today encompasses a wide variety of sailing activities from young kids in their Optimist and Mirror dinghies sailing right through the winter months to the not-so-young kids racing National 18s and 1720s during the remaining nine months. There is also enthusiastic sailing in 470s, Int. 14s, Lasers, Laser IIs and other dinghies. The larger keelboats race on various courses set in and around the Cork Harbour area for club competitions. They also take part in events such as the Round Ireland Race, Cowes Week and the Fastnet Race.

In many far off waters, right across the globe, overseas club members proudly sail under the Royal Cork burgee. The club has a significant number of cruising members, many of whom are content to sail our magnificent south and west coasts. Others head north for the Scottish islands and Scandinavia. Some go south to France, Spain, Portugal and the Mediterranean. The more adventurous have crossed the Atlantic, explored little known places in the Pacific and Indian Oceans while others have circumnavigated the globe.

Looking forward into the 21st century, the Royal Cork goes from strength to strength, total membership is around 1500, our facilities are unparalleled in Ireland and continue to expand, major World, European and Irish Championships are hosted in the club regularly. Cork Week, which is held every two years, is regarded as Europe’s best fun regatta bar none and attracts contestants from all over the world. Recently the Royal Cork was proud to host the ISAF Nations Cup. The activities of the club are regarded as a major tourism asset for the Cork area and significantly contribute to the economy of Crosshaven. The Royal Cork may be almost 300 years old but it is still vibrant, progressive and innovative – just as it was in 1720.

(Details and image courtesy of the Royal Cork Yacht Club and Bob Bateman) 

 

Buy the RCYC History Book here

 

Royal Cork Yacht Club, Crosshaven, Co. Cork. Tel: +353 21 483 1023, fax: +353 21 483 1586, email: [email protected]

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Published in Clubs
Page 74 of 76

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