Thank you!

The club recently hosted almost 100 visitors on Saturday 25th June at our Discover sailing day. Although the windy conditions were very challenging and curtailed any sailing, visitors were treated to onshore displays and tours and taken around the lake on our committee boat to give them a taste of club activity.

Huge thanks are due to those that gave up their day to help, and portrayed the club in such a positive light: Helen Martin, Gus Cameron, Jan Frayne, John Smalley, Jo Muscat, James Williams, Paul Nichols, Pete Sherwin, Tony Clutton, Steve Smith, Dave Orme, Austen Milner, Rosie Bowers and all the club duty team

Family Regatta Saturday 02-Jul-22

See further below for details of our family regatta this coming Saturday. This is always a fabulous family day and I will look forward to seeing lost of you there.

In preparation, a hardy group of nettle bashers landed on Little Denny on Wednesday to help prepare the island for the Pirate Treasure hunt. Ably marshalled by Short Fat Silver (AKA Jeff Stratford), the team comprised Kevin Crumpling, Annabelle, Jo Muscat, Charlie Muscat, Hugh Whatley and Dave Pye, Pete Knight, Steve Butler, Angie Maspiatro, Amanda Dereham, Kara Foy, Phil Hird and Nigel Braybrooke – thank you all for your hard work.

Jeff and his motley crew of Nettle bashers

In terms of Saturdays Family Regatta, as always Pirate fancy dress is suggested, but if you cant do that just bring yourselves! There will be lots of things going on, with a large inflatable obstacle course, the annual Round the Island Race (its not obligatory to also decorate your boat with Pirate regalia but there may be additional prizes for those that do), fancy dress prizes and, of course, the treasure hunt on Little Denny and Cutthroat Ben’s BBQ. The full schedule of events is shown in the poster below

NOTE: Parents – I am looking for some parents to help supervise the giant inflatable on the day. If you can help out with a stint please contact me here

Bristol University sailing Club success

It’s been great to see high levels of student participation returning to Chew after their team racing activities were ravaged by the pandemic. Over the last year we hosted a number of large events for both Bristol and Bath Universities, and the schools, and while these do sometimes stretch our infrastructure to breaking, it is always fantastic to see the large groups of young sailors having fun competing on the water. I was therefor delighted to hear that Bristol University sailing club was awarded Sports Club of the Year by the University of Bristol Students Union, reflecting the hard work and enthusiasm they put in across all their events – dare I say they worked as hard to run successful events on the water as I suspect they played off it! Well done Emma and your committee.

Remember Remember!

With such a large and busy club we all have a part to play in helping things run safely and smoothly. Please can I remind everyone of the following:

  • Please dont forget to sign in at the hut as you enter the club premises
  • Please dont park beside the road between the hut and car park other than to quickly offload any kit – this potentially blocks in dinghies and may prevent people going sailing
  • Please do take account of the weather and your own capabilities before deciding to going sailing on the lake – and take heed of instructions given by the RIB crews to go ashore if you repeatedly capsize and require assistance

Sailing Committee Update

Wind down Wednesday evenings:
Traditionally the Wind Down Wednesday evening races have been covered by volunteers, although we always come up a bit short on numbers! The evenings are available for volunteers on Dutyman and I’ll leave be for another week or so before I start rostering (based on those who have sailed most this year on Wednesdays – no one will get more than 2 evening duties!). Please do put your name down if you fancy a late summer twilight evening on the water.

ILCA / Solo open.
We had great weather for the recent ILCA/Solo open and you can read Toby’s report for the Solos (here).

Club Racing Regatta Sunday 03-Jul-22.
The morning will be an all in handicap race competing for the A and B handicap trophies starting from 11am. The afternoon will be a 70% pursuit race for the Marshall Trophy.
The Summer Points and Champions League will return on the 10-Jul-22.

Thursday evenings
Thursday 07-Jul-22 will be the final Thursday Improvers / Start Racing. The following week begins the Fun Thursdays run by the Police group where the lake will be open for sailing and they hope to run an informal race. Check the club calendar for the subsequent Fun Thursday dates.

Possible Dinghy Instructor Course at CVLSC – Dave Orme (RYA Principal)

It’s great that several members have contacted me since the beginning of the year to ask whether we plan to run a DI course at the club. Sadly, we don’t have the in-house capability to run one ourselves but we may be able to work with neighbouring clubs and the RYA to get something arranged. However, I need a bit of information to take this idea forward.

If you are thinking about doing a DI course, please have a look at the requirements and details on the RYA website about how the course is run and the pre course sailing assessment that needs to be completed:

If having considered the info provided by the RYA you believe you meet the entry criteria and want to take on the challenge and enjoy the pleasure of getting new sailors into our sport, please email me to register your interest. I’d ask those who have been in touch with me already to repeat their interest – I need everyone responding to tell me whether they think they would be in a position to attend a local 5 day course (in principle; dates and location yet TBC) or whether you would/could only consider doing the course in modules over a number of weekends. This will help understand what’s do-able across the local clubs and let the RYA know what might be required if a course is to go ahead. Thanks.

Dave Orme, RYA Principal/Chief Dinghy Instructor,

First Aid Course – 09-Jul-22

A RYA first aid course is planned for Saturday 09-Jul-22 and currently has 4 spaces still available.

It’s a full day RYA certified instructor led First Aid Course, including the manual and a certificate valid for 3 years for £25 – please book via your webcollect account or contact

Lake and Cake – Jo Cudmore

The forecast for our last lake and cake was a bit daunting but changed daily and we were lucky to have a perfect breeze on the day!
There were a small group of sailors who enjoyed being on the water. Thanks to Peter Sherwin for going out in the Quest with Liza and Katie and giving them this benefit of his calm encouragement, Clare enjoyed a single handed sail in her mirror while Sarah and Jo practiced boar handling in their lasers!
Thanks to our lovely trolley dolly Helen we had no problems going afloat!
After working up an appetite We gathered with a few more Cakers in the bar for our usual feast of tea and cakes which included a chocolate , 2 different banana cakes and a coffee and walnut amongst other!

We are looking forward to our next get together on 16-Jul-22 which will include the Ladies Trophy Race which is open to any lady who would like to join in, if you sail a double handed boat then you can have a male or female crew!

Further details will be posted on the club Facebook page !

Lunch on the Lake – Simon Conway

Our third event of the year didn’t take place on Saturday 18th June owing to someone switching the wind and rain machine on and turning it up to number eleven!

However, the night before saw the first of a kind event for CVLSC where four boats were moored to the Southern pontoon and donned some rather creative boom tents under which their occupants slept almost soundly for the entire night. Most brought packed evening meals and breakfasts but there was one boat with a fully kitted galley box, on which, a rather tasty chicken teriyaki and rice was made. Beds were also varied, from the boat’s floorboards, to raised boards, a hammock and a canvas camp bed.

Once the geese had finished their evening ritual of what seemed like a huge family argument, the lake went eerily quiet and peaceful, the wind died down, the water calmed and being just 3 days before summer solstice, the sunset was a long time coming. During the night there were the odd bouts of conversation between geese, right next to our boats, and they don’t talk quietly.

The scene on Saturday morning from within our tiny floating homes was breathtakingly beautiful. Early morning mist gently lifting off a mirror finish lake that even James Webb would have been proud of. Once our croissants, cakes, biscuits, cereals and porridge were consumed we packed away the tents and removed the boats from the water making way for the normal Saturday sailing.

I think a few snagging lists were written after the event which means it served its purpose, to trial before they are used further afield and to identify any aspect which would compromise safety or efficacy in use.

A big Thankyou to Sue Conway who kindly stayed at the club all night keeping a watchful eye on us.

The next Lunch on the lake is scheduled for 06-Aug-22 but I am sure we will be throwing some ad-hoc ones in there between then and now.

First Dinghy Cruise by Alice Menenko

On the Jubilee bank holiday weekend Ali and I made grand plans to sail the entire Norfolk Broads. I never seem to make things easy for myself. I had managed to persuade Ali to come along with me, who did a great job of hiding his dread under his enthusiasm, particularly at the prospect of sleeping on the boat, my recently refurbished wooden Mirror, named Labrum of Love (the origin of the name is too long a story to include here!). Our plan was to sail from Wroxham, all the way to Hickling (visiting Barton Broad along the way) and back in 4 days. We had conservatively assumed a slow sailing speed to ensure we would have enough time to get where we needed to be.

On Thursday morning we parked and started to rig and load the boat. This is when the packing got ruthless and optimistically (or naively) we thought the glorious sunny weather would continue. Labrum rose to the challenge and positively absorbed everything we needed for the next 4 days. Once we launched and we were sure Labrum wouldn’t sink, we set off on our adventure.

Some synonyms of broad are large, wide, big, but instead we were faced with narrow tree lined rivers and that took shifty to a whole new level. In good spirits we made it comfortably and safely to our first destination (Salhouse Broad), found a mooring next to the campsite and pitched our tent with no issue at all. The next day we knew the tide would be against us but the wind was good and we still had hope the Broads would live up their broad expectations.

The Broads didn’t get a whole lot broader and motorboats were out in their droves which lead to some rather stressful situations whilst we were tacking, supposedly, up wind! With the headwind and the tide being stronger than we expected, we weren’t really making much progress to our next stop, so had to rearrange our plan and decided to sail to Ranworth Broad for our overnight stop. After sailing upwind all day, we turned into the Broad and we finally did about 500m of the most delightful reaching I’ve ever done. Next job, put up the boom tent. Now in hindsight, I should have at least done a dry run but I thought we could fix it for one night. But alas, we admitted defeat to the tarpaulin and we were now cold, hungry and fed up of being outside. Now this is a long story short but the only place we could find to stay was very demoralizingly, a 15 min taxi ride in the direction of Salhouse, where we had stayed the previous night!

After a goodnight of sleep and a fry up, we came to the conclusion that we weren’t going to sail the entire Norfolk broads. We had a spring in our step as we left the B&B. The 3.5hr sail back with fair winds and favourable tide was a dream, we even had time for a pootle round on Wroxham Broad.

Despite sailing much less distance than originally planned, all in all I actually had a great time and it is something I would love to do again, next time with my pre-tested boom tent and maybe my dog?!

Thank you to my Mum for helping me get the boat ready for cruising and to Ali for being such a good sport. Also to the cruising club with a special mention to Phil for lending us fenders and an anchor.

On the Road

Well done to all those members below on their open meeting successes – I am sure we have missed some so please do let us know if you’ve been away

  • Ollie Houseman has travelled the country with his vintage Merlin Rocket finishing 3rd with Harriet at the Vintage and Classic open (report) and 3rd the following day at the Silver Tiller (report) both at Tamesis. The following weekend sailing with Emily they finished 2nd at the Fishers Green open (report). Continuing his travels Ollie and Emily attended Bourne End week with the Merlin (report) and took his National 18 back to Tamesis for the Adelaide Cup and Tamesis Anchor, winning the event overall with Jeremy Vines (report).
  • Over the Jubilee Bank Holiday weekend Derian and Andy Scott finished a brilliant 5th at the Fireball National Championships at Brightlingsea, also achieving first female helm (final report)
  • The same weekend John Ellis took his Solo to the open at Salcombe, with a very creditable 7th in the final race (report)
  • Also over the bank holiday weekend 2 Chew boats ventured further afield to the RS Eurocup in Carnac. Guy Boullenger finished 7th in the RS700 fleet (final report) and James Williams won the RS200 fleet with Sarah Tuppen (final report)
  • Alex Knight and James Clark finished 6th in the International 14 Prince of Wales week, including a 4th in the iconic POW Cup race. Rob Higgins joined Alex and James, sailing with RS700 compatriot Theo Gayler (report)
  • On the same day as the CVLSC Laser / Solo open, three club RS200s travelled to Bristol Corinthian for the latest event on the South West tour. Dave Sweet and Derian Scott were top Chew boat, winning the silver fleet in 8th overall (report)
  • Adrian and Jo Cudmore both sailed day 1 of the Europe Nationals at WPNSA (report)
  • Ian Cadwallader crewed Ian Pinnell to 2nd in the Flying Fifteen Southerns at Parkstone, only being beaten on a last race decider. Bill Chard and Josh Preater finished 15th (report)

Andy Jones