We are well into the busiest part of our season, and with so much going on here’s the latest – what is coming up, and what has happened:

Junior/Youth Programme latest by Ruth Gribble

This year we’re seeing lots of enthusiastic youngster’s taking to the water, through a Youth Programme delivered in partnership with All Aboard Watersports, a Charity based in Bristol docks.

Back in May, in windy conditions, we took 11 children through their stage 3 course, sailing a mixture of Toppers and Fevas. Most have returned on the Sunday morning Chew Crew sessions, which are all about having fun, building confidence and gaining new skills on the water. We’ve had 20+ sailors out on Sunday mornings in a mixture of Teras, Toppers and Fevas. We’ve seen the young sailors thoroughly enjoy getting to grips with spinnaker sailing, embrace Topper racing and master a huge number of games in the Teras. We’ve also almost finished Sunday afternoon stage 1 and stage 2 courses for 18 kids – having seen some excellent sailing and perseverance in windy conditions, in Optibats and Teras.

We’re now working to further develop the club’s youth programme, with planning for 2024 already underway. If you have thoughts or want to get involved please get in touch via ChewCrew2023@gmail.com.

Youth Course Spaces
1 space on RYA stage 4 course 22/23 JulyChew Valley Lake Sailing Club: 2023 RYA Youth Course Stage 4 – July WEEKEND (webcollect.org.uk)
2 spaces on RYA stage 1 course 5/6 August: Chew Valley Lake Sailing Club: 2023 RYA Youth Course Stage 1 August WEEKEND (webcollect.org.uk)

Powerboat Bosun

We have been extremely lucky over recent years to have Steve Turner undertake the role of our club Bosun, overseeing all the work and maintenance on our fleet of RIBs and powerboats and keeping them ready for action when needed.

Steve is now preparing to take a slight backward step away from this role, and I am very pleased to report that John Rogers has agreed to step in to take the lead in his place.

John will oversee and coordinate any work needed to the RIBs etc, and we are building a small team of people to help support him in this endeavour and to help spread the work. Steve will still have an ongoing involvement, along with other experienced hands such as Alan Coventry and also now Jeff Stratford, but we are looking to add to these with a few more names that are able to potentially help out on some occasions.

If this is something that you may be able to assist with please contact John at pb-bosun@chewvalleysailing.co.uk

Fun Thursdays return by Jeff Stratford

FUN Thursdays are back, the first one is this week the 08-Jul-23, the next one on the 20-Jul-23 and then the 03-Jul-23 and 17-Jul-23.

The Police group will open the Club at 1400 and provide OOD and rescue cover for all Club members to come down for a sail, about 1800 Hugh and Jackie Whatley will run a simple race for a bit of FUN, no entry fee, no prizes. We aim to be off the water and run a BBQ about 1930, we don’t have prices we ask for a donation to cover costs, if you have any special dietary needs we suggest you bring your own and we will cook it for you. To assist with catering if you are coming to the BBQ please email jeffstratford@btinternet.comwith numbers. If one of our group is bar trained by then we will open the bar. In the past these afternoon/evenings have proved very popular.

Family Regatta

Very many thanks to the Band of nettle Bashers (pictured below ) that ventured onto Denny to help prepare the island for the Family Regatta treasure hunt

Although not evident in the pictures, conditions on the day were very blustery making the round the island race a test of determination and resilience! Never the less, the morning’s adventures on the water and afternoon ferry ride to Denny Island, Ben’s BBQ and the games onshore helped ensure everyone had a great day – very many thanks to all those that helped out

Start Racing final fling by Nick Martindale

The start racing sessions came to a fitting conclusion last Thursday with the final regatta and BBQ.
Over the course of the 5 sessions around 12 sailors joined in at one stage or another.
The format of a different focus each week and lots of time on the water to enable many, many short races proves popular and a sure way to improve skills / build confidence to join in the club racing.

The regatta saw 7 boats competed in a 3-race series using the standard club racing procedures. Despite the blustery conditions all competitors excelled with Helen in her Laser coming out on top with 3 wins. A BYO BBQ followed at which Helen was awarded a well-deserved bar of chocolate – duly shared with all !

I hope everyone who took part enjoyed it and hope to see you on the race-track soon!
(Remember also there’s an immediate opportunity to put the skills into practice in a relaxed atmosphere at the Fun Thursday races).
Many thanks to Helen Martin and Chris Meredith for helping run things each week.

Below: start racing regatta participants and prize winners

Ladies day trophy regatta Sat 8th July by Jo Cudmore

Ladies Trophy Day is this Saturday afternoon July 8th with training in the morning, 3 short races in the afternoon followed by prize giving with tea and cake in the bar or on the balcony depending on the weather!

This is a friendly event and a good time to try a race for the first time if you are fairly new to sailing. Double handers may have a male crew but must have a female helm.

Any female sailors who wish to sail but not race are still free to enjoy time on the water and are equally welcome to join us for tea and cake.

Wednesday Evening Wind Down by James Williams

As in previous years, the Wednesday Evening Wind Down race duties are undertaken from the most regular racers through the Wednesday series.

Tom has un-hidden the duty days in Dutyman (so feel free to volunteer if you wish!), but I’ll look to populating these in the next couple of weeks. If you have already done 2 Wednesday duties this year you shouldn’t get a third.

RYA PB2 Course by Jeff Stratford

There is currently one place still available on the RYA PB2 course on Saturday 8th and Saturday 15th of July. It is a two day course and you must be able to do both days. No experience required, you have to be 16 or over and a current club member please book via your Webcollect account or if you have any questions contact jeffstratford@btinternet.com

RYA First Aid  Course by Jeff Stratford

There are also a few places left on the RYA first aid course on the 29th July, it is a requirement for all instructors and highly recommended for everyone. You get a certificate valid for 3 years and the current first aid manual, it is very practical. Fantastic value at £30 please book via Webcollect or contact Jeff as above.

CVLSC familiarisation course for RIB drivers by Jeff Stratford

Are you a new member with a PB2 done elsewhere or a not so new member who perhaps did it a long time ago? We offer a free introduction session to our RIBs, the equipment carried, our daily checks we would like carried out and our refuelling procedure together with an introduction to our tractor. It takes about an hour and we can usually do it to suit you.

Falmouth Week 2023/Cruising Update by Simon Conway

Falmouth Week 2023 was blessed with baking sunshine, neap tides, no rain and just enough wind to make it yet another amazing week in a stunning location. Thanks again to our hosts (Royal Cornwall Yacht Club) and to Dave Hopkins for his exceptional organisation, ensuring our safety and upholding a cherished tradition.

Launching the boats on arrival was reminiscent of a scene from a Stephen King novel, with a dense sea mist billowing in from Carrick Roads and enveloping everything in its path. However, from that point on it was all clear skies, smooth seas and gentle breezes, a perfect setting for sailing alongside the magnificent classic vessels in town for both the 3-day Falmouth classics regatta and the inaugural Richard Mille Cup. Also in town was the foreboding brig “Phoenix”, and the prestigious cruise liner “The World” ( look that one up! )

Wind strength prevented long voyages enjoyed by participants in previous years. Nevertheless, our journeys to Trelissick House, Loe Beach, St. Mawes, the Percuil River, St. Anthony’s (Place House) and a leisurely excursion past Black Rock and back were incredibly beautiful and tranquil. We retrieved our boats on the last day to the sounds of the many bands and artists setting up for the start of the International Shanty Festival, all in all it was a great week in a great location with great company. Let’s keep doing it!

Member Travels (mainly by James Williams)

In addition to the home Solo and ILCA opens mentioned in the last newsletter and Simon Conway’s adventures, members have been travelling far and wide throughout June.

Adrian and Jo Cudmore were members of the 6 crew of Impala Polly in the Round The Island Race last Saturday
The winds were 15-20 knots with a tricky sea state that made sailing quite challenging but Polly made it round safely coming first of the 4 Impala Entries and 31st overall.

Below: Jo and Adrain on their Impala

Ollie Houseman continued his Thames area events with the Merlin Rocket River Championships at Upper Thames.

The other symmetric dinghies on the road were Malcolm / Alison James and Tom Jeffocate / Andy Thompson in the Scorpions at Sidmouth

There has also been a lot of keelboat action. David Pye took his K1 to Wimbleball (no report to date) and our regular Flying Fifteen travellers Ian Cawallader (this time steering with Ellie Devereux) and Bill Chard / Josh Preater travelled to Burnham. Ian / Ellie narrowly missed out on 2nd overall. After winning the East Coast Squib Championships at Felixstowe Ferry in May, Tom Jeffcoate (with Mark Hogan) achieved a comfortable 2nd overall in a fleet of 65 at the National Championships at Weymouth SC. As a crew, James Williams narrowly won the Ajax East Coast Championships (the Squib’s bigger brother) hosted out of Royal Harwich YC.

Four RS200 events have had Chew representation. Dave Sweet sailed with Anna Mason at Bristol Corinthian, joined by Ed Harris & Imogen. Dave / Anna also travelled all the way to the ‘Cornish Nationals’ at Restronguet with Martyn Stubbs / Yvonne Smith, Dave / Anna sailing a consistent event for 4th overall. Callum Farnden crewed for Alex Smallwood to win at Itchenor and also win the first race in a strong fleet at the Summer Champs at Hayling Island.

Elsewhere at the RS Summer Regatta Rob Higgins won the RS700 fleet on countback, joined in the fleet by Elliot Booley. In the RS100 fleet Andy Jones, David Smart and Steve Jones were all in the top 6. Andy’s report suggesting that ChatGPT has reached the Elizabethan era, but is probably rapidly improving.

Chris Meredith also represented the Solo fleet at a Starcross Dittisham weekend double header

And finally, news just in, Christi Brasher and Sarah Harding travelled to the ILCA masters nationals at Hayling Island, finishing a fantastic 1st and 2nd overall in the 4.7 fleet

Sailing Area

A quick reminder of the allowable sailing areas. Behind Denny Island and the very Southern end of the lake are out of bounds for sailing, as is Vallise Bay, the bay that mark 8 sits at the edge of.

The sailing area is shown on our website here and reproduced below (although the white buoys marking the limits on the water have in many cases disappeared, Bristol Water are going to be renewing the limit markers in the very near future).

If in doubt, the clubhouse must remain in sight around Denny Island and the fixed marks of 7, C and 6 are not far North of the Southern limit.

Lynne Adams by Simon Chapman

It is with sadness that we report the death of long time club member Lynne Adams.

Lynne joined the club as an accomplished crew having won races in a number of major championships. At Chew she initially crewed in a Scorpion before moving to the Flying Fifteen fleet where she was regular crew for former club Commodore Mike Thompson and later for Andy Bones.

She also made guest appearances with Ian Cadwallader and others. Lynne formed a strong bond with the ‘Flying Fifteen girls’ loving joining them on holidays in her campervan once she retired.

Away from the club, Lynne spent many holidays sailing with family and friends in the UK, France, the Mediterranean and Caribbean. Sailing really was a huge part of her life.

We send our condolences to her children Paddy and Freya, both accomplished sailors who many will remember at the club moving from their very smart Mirror through 420’s, a 29er and RS800.

Funeral details etc can be found here

Andy Jones