2014 Review

Post date: 11-Dec-2014 17:38:07

The St Edmundsbury Sailing & Canoeing Association (SESCA), based at Lackford Lake, continues to go from strength to strength.

At the start of the season, another very successful RYA ‘Push The Boat Out’ Open Weekend, helped by promotional support from local estate agents, haart Bury St Edmunds, resulted in the Club giving 150 sailing tasters to members of the public. This event combined with a monthly series of ‘Have a Go’ sessions, which attracted on average two dozen visitors, led to a further 23 families, five adult individuals and three cadets joining the Club. Total family and adult membership now exceeds one hundred and ten.

Group membership has also grown significantly, with the Priory School and Newmarket Sea Cadets joining the Bury St Edmunds and Mildenhall Sea Cadets; WASH Sailability (disabled sailing); Young People Afloat; Suffolk Scouts and Culford School. Group useage of the Club is now running in excess of 100 young people per week.

Organised sailing, rowing and canoeing activities are now taking place on six days per week throughout the summer. In addition to regular racing on Thursday evenings; Sunday mornings and Bank Holidays, the Club is running monthly Youth Sailing; Women on Water and Race Training sessions. The Club has also run First Aid, Safety Boat and Duty Officer courses for the volunteer helpers and currently has four candidates training as RYA Dinghy Instructors to assist with the Club’s training activities.

Racing participation has also increased significantly, this year. One of the highlights was the Club’s ‘Antigua Sailing Day Regatta’ when a record 17 Laser dinghies competed. This event was held to celebrate and coincide with ‘Antigua Sailing Week’ and was generously supported by the Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority. ‘Bart’s Bash’, the successful Guinness world record attempt at the largest sailing event in the world, saw 22 members on the water while the Youth Regatta attracted 11 entries, which was very encouraging.

The Club has meanwhile expanded its training/hire fleet with the addition of three more dinghies and two kayaks bringing the total number of craft available to members to 22. It is a great feature of the Club that you do not need to own your own boat in order to sail.

The Club has additionally benefitted from a gift of ten junior buoyancy aids from the local Volvo dealership, Cecil and Larter, which have been gratefully used for the Club’s youth sailing and training sessions.

Next year, the Club is looking to replace some of its older training boats; extend its jetties and purchase a lawn mower to facilitate maintenance of the site.

The Club is also very grateful for the continuing press coverage of events in the Bury Free Press; Bury Mercury and Anglia Afloat and online reports on Yachts and Yachting.com and the Breckland View, which have helped to raise the Club’s profile.

The Club’s Facebook ‘likes’ are now up to 72 and the Club’s Twitter feed ‘SESCAnews’ has now acquired 422 followers.