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National Yacht Club Commodore Thanks Dun Laoghaire Harbour Clubs For Support of Sesquicentennial Race Day

5th September 2020
Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Council Caothaoirleach Una Power with Dun Laoghaire Harbour Yacht Club Commodore's celebrating National YC 150th Race Day Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Council Caothaoirleach Una Power with Dun Laoghaire Harbour Yacht Club Commodore's celebrating National YC 150th Race Day Photo: Michael Chester

National Yacht Club Commodore Martin McCarthy yesterday presented a special flag to each of four neighbouring Clubs as a mark of Solidarity and to thank them for helping his Club hold a Raceday to celebrate the Club's 150th anniversary.

Commodore McCarthy said, before a socially distanced, outdoor, audience, led by Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Cathaoirleach Cllr. Una Power: "We are marking the formal announcement of the National Yacht Club's Sesquicentennial Raceday which is the sailing highlight of this historic year for our Club. In a typical year, we would have a four-day Regatta with lots of parties and fireworks. It would have been one of the four Regattas hosted here in Dun Laoghaire – one by each of the waterfront Clubs.

Last May, it became clear that with Covid 19, everything has changed in the world – and the Sailing world.

DBSC Race Officer Eddie Totterdell accepts 150th Raceday Flag from NYC's Martin McCarthy as Cllr. Una Power officiatesDBSC Race Officer Eddie Totterdell (right) accepts 150th Raceday Flag from NYC's Martin McCarthy as Cllr. Una Power officiates Photo; Michael Chester

National YC Commodore Martin McCarthy presents 150th Raceday Flag to DMYC Commodore Frank Guilfoyle with DLR CoCo Caothaoirleach in attendanceNational YC Commodore Martin McCarthy presents 150th Raceday Flag to DMYC Commodore Frank Guilfoyle with DLR CoCo Caothaoirleach in attendance Photo; Michael Chester

An idea came from the Royal St. George YC to have a single event, to be called the Solidarity Regatta, run by all the Clubs together. As time went on, it became clear that the problem with events were not the events themselves – but the post-event social side. So, it was whittled down to a one-day event – without a social side – and now termed a RACEDAY.

NYC Commodore Martin McCarthy presents 150th Flag to RSGYC Commodore Peter Bowring with DLR CoCo Caothaoirleach Una Power attending.NYC Commodore Martin McCarthy presents 150th Flag to RSGYC Commodore Peter Bowring with DLR CoCo Caothaoirleach Una Power attending Photo: Michael Chester

In a splendid gesture of Solidarity, our neighbouring Clubs allowed us to proceed with this event, renamed The NYC 150th Raceday, forgoing their Regattas.

Words cannot express how grateful we are to the other clubs, not just giving us the window to have a celebration of our 150th on the water – but for enthusiastically supporting it.

NYC Commodore Martin McCarthy presents 150th RACEDAY flag to RIYC Commodore Pat Shannon with DLR CoCo Caothaoirleach Una PowerNYC Commodore Martin McCarthy presents 150th RACEDAY flag to RIYC Commodore Pat Shannon with DLR CoCo Caothaoirleach Una Power

In that context, we have a special commemorative Flag designed and made to mark this occasion.

We presented a National YC 150th Flag to:

  • Frank Gilfoyle, Commodore of Dun Laoghaire Motor Yacht Club
  • Pat Shannon, Commodore of Royal Irish Yacht Club
  • Peter Bowring, Commodore of the Royal St. George Yacht Club
  • Ann Kirwan, Vice Commodore of Dublin Bay Sailing Club

I also want to thank the Race Officers for the event, Eddie Totterdell & Con Murphy and the DBSC team, who has done trojan work in drawing up the plans for the Raceday. We expect to have 175 entries, from across the waterfront.

I especially want to thank Dun Laoghaire Rathdown CoCo Caothaoirleach, Una Power for being here today to mark this historic occasion.

The Council's support has been invaluable, and we much appreciate it, as we are planning now for the impacts of Covid 19, which, while temporary, is serious and maybe around for some time."
Cathaoirleach Power said: "This is an especially significant year for the National YC, which was founded, on this spot 150 years ago. The Clubs have shown great Solidarity to make the Raceday possible, and it is this spirit that we will need to show to help our tourism economy make a full recovery. Sailing is a significant employer, and we hope that we can get back to seeing more big sailing events in the future."

Published in National YC
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The home club of Laser Radial Olympic Silver medalist Annalise Murphy, the National Yacht Club is a lot more besides. It is also the spiritual home of the offshore sailing body ISORA, the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race and the biggest Flying Fifteen fleet in Ireland. Founded on a loyal membership, the National Yacht Club at the East Pier in Dun Laoghaire on Dublin Bay enjoys a family ethos and a strong fellowship in a relaxed atmosphere of support and friendship through sailing.

Bathing in the gentle waterfront ambience of Dun Laoghaire on the edge of South County Dublin, the National Yacht Club has graced the waters of the Irish Sea and far beyond for more than a century and in 2020 celebrates its sesquicentennial.  

The club is particularly active in dinghy and keelboat one-design racing and has hosted three World Championships in recent years including the Flying Fifteen Worlds in 2003, 2019 and the SB3 Worlds in 2008. The ISAF Youth Worlds was co-hosted with our neighbouring club the Royal St. George Yacht Club in 2012...

National Yacht Club Facilities

Facilities include a slipway directly accessing Dun Laoghaire Harbour, over eighty club moorings, platform parking, pontoons, fuelling, watering and crane-lifting ensure that the NYC is excellently equipped to cater for all the needs of the contemporary sailor. Berths with diesel, water, power and overnight facilities are available to cruising yachtsmen with shopping facilities being a short walk away. The club is active throughout the year with full dining and bar facilities and winter activities include bridge, snooker, quiz nights, wine tasting and special events.

National Yacht Club History

Although there are references to an active “club” prior to 1870, history records that the present clubhouse was erected in 1870 at a cost of £4,000 to a design by William Sterling and the Kingstown Royal Harbour Boat Club was registered with Lloyds in the same year. By 1872 the name had been changed to the Kingston Harbour Boat Club and this change was registered at Lloyds.

In 1881. the premises were purchased by a Captain Peacocke and others who formed a proprietary club called the Kingstown Harbour Yacht Club again registered at Lloyds. Some six years later in 1877 the building again changed hands being bought by a Mr Charles Barrington. and between 1877 and 1901 the club was very active and operated for a while as the “Absolute Club” although this change of name was never registered.

In 1901, the lease was purchased by three trustees who registered it as the Edward Yacht Club. In 1930 at a time when the Edward Yacht Club was relatively inactive, a committee including The Earl of Granard approached the trustees with a proposition to form the National Yacht Club. The Earl of Granard had been Commodore of the North Shannon Y.C. and was a senator in the W.T.Cosgrave government. An agreement was reached, the National Yacht Club was registered at Lloyds. The club burgee was created, red cross of Saint George with blue and white quarters being sky cloud, sea and surf. The Earl of Granard became the first Commodore.

In July of 1950, a warrant was issued to the National Yacht Club by the Government under the Merchant Shipping Act authorising members to hoist a club ensign in lieu of the National Flag. The new ensign to include a representation of the harp. This privilege is unique and specific to members of the National Yacht Club. Sterling’s design for the exterior of the club was a hybrid French Chateau and eighteenth century Garden Pavilion and today as a Class A restricted building it continues to provide elegant dining and bar facilities.

An early drawing of the building shows viewing balconies on the roof and the waterfront façade. Subsequent additions of platforms and a new slip to the seaward side and most recently the construction of new changing rooms, offices and boathouse provide state of the art facilities, capable of coping with major international and world championship events. The club provides a wide range of sailing facilities, from Junior training to family cruising, dinghy sailing to offshore racing and caters for most major classes of dinghies, one design keelboats, sports boats and cruiser racers. It provides training facilities within the ISA Youth Sailing Scheme and National Power Boat Schemes.

Past Commodores

1931 – 42 Earl of Granard 1942 – 45 T.J. Hamilton 1945 – 47 P.M. Purcell 1947 – 50 J.J. O’Leary 1950 – 55 A.A. Murphy 1955 – 60 J.J. O’Leary 1960 – 64 F. Lemass 1964 – 69 J.C. McConnell 1969 – 72 P.J. Johnston 1972 – 74 L. Boyd 1974 – 76 F.C. Winkelmann 1976 – 79 P.A. Browne 1979 – 83 W.A. Maguire 1983 – 87 F.J. Cooney 1987 – 88 J.J. Byrne 1988 – 91 M.F. Muldoon 1991 – 94 B.D. Barry 1994 – 97 M.P.B. Horgan 1997 – 00 B. MacNeaney 2000 – 02 I.E. Kiernan 2002 – 05 C.N.I. Moore 2005 – 08 C.J. Murphy 2008 – 11 P.D. Ryan 2011 – P. Barrington 2011-2014 Larry Power 2014-2017 Ronan Beirne 2017 – 2019

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