Club News

July News Update

Posted on July 1, 2015 by | Categories Club News, Sailing News, Social News, Training | Comments Off

DSC Regatta
The annual Club Regatta, where we welcome sailors from other Clubs in the area to race at Donaghadee, will take place on Saturday 29 August 2015. As well as the traditional post racing afternoon tea, there will be an early evening BBQ with live music in the Clubhouse. It would be great to see as many members as possible out on the water for this event as well as down at the Clubhouse in the afternoon and evening. We will also be working hard to encourage as many members as possible from other Clubs to join us for the day. So please put this date in your diary.

Club Open Day
As part of the Donaghadee Festival, we will be hosting an open day at the Club to coincide with the annual Raft Race on Saturday 1 August 2015. This year a Community Skiff Regatta will also be held on the same day. A fundraising event for RNLI will also be held in the Clubhouse that evening involving a BBQ and disco.

Training Courses
The summer training programme at Donaghadee Sailing Club is now in full swing. With the good weather here for a few weeks now is a great time to sign up for a course as an adult or a junior. Details of all our courses can be found here. To apply for any of our courses please complete an application form and drop it into the Club along with the appropriate payment. A Junior Refresher course will run on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of this week for those young members holding RYA 2, 3 or 4 qualifications – a chance to get back on the water and update your skills.  Next week a RYA Junior Level 1&2 course will start on Monday 6 July 2015 running till Friday with a RYA Level 3&4 course running during the week commencing Monday 13 July 2015. For further details on training please contact James Ogg at [email protected] or Heather Burrows at [email protected]

Canoes in the Boat Park
We are currently seeking to identify the owners of canoes placed in the Boat Park. Please see the attached notice. If you are the owner of these canoes please contact James Ogg to arrange payment of the appropriate storage fee.

Junior Sailing and Strangford Lough Regatta
Strangford Sailing Club is running four days of sailing from 16-19th July. A youth series for Juniors will take place on 16 July with racing starting at noon followed by prizes and food. Details of this and other events at the Club, which is situated in Castle Ward grounds, can be found at http://www.strangfordloughregattas.co.uk Stuart Ogg hopes to take down some Toppers and a support boat from DSc  for the event so please get in touch with him if you would like more details.

Bow Bells BBQ
Plans are in hand for a Bow Bells BBQ at the Clubhouse on Sunday 26 July. Please put this date in your diary.

Some other dates for your Diary
Saturday 29 August  –  Club Regatta Day
Saturday 19 September – Commodores Day
Saturday 31 October – Halloween Spooktacular – Fancy Dress Party
Sunday 13 December  – Club Christmas Dinner
Saturday 19 December  – Club Children’s Christmas Party
Christmas Eve – Mulled Wine and Mince Pies
Saturday 26 December  – Rock Hopper Race
New Years Eve – NYE Party and Disco

Training Update

Posted on June 11, 2015 by | Categories Club News, Training | Comments Off

An Adult Level 2 sailing course will take place this weekend. If you have completed your Level 1 course or simply want to improve your skills, this is the course for you. Course will start at 9am both Saturday and Sunday and will be delivered by Senior Instructor Laura Jackson. Application form is available on www.donaghadeesc.co.uk/training

GP14 Double handed training will continue this Sunday morning and all future Sundays at 10.15 am. Aimed at all those who sail GP14s or who would like to crew in them. Participants must have basic sailing skills, as the program is about boat set up and sailing technique, not about teaching the basic of sailing. This weeks session will be run by Lawrence Baalham, a long time GP sailor and Senior Instructor. After the session, why not add to your enjoyment and compete in the afternoon club racing.

Any queries call James Ogg on 07730006149

June Update

Posted on June 11, 2015 by | Categories Club News, Sailing News, Social News, Training | Comments Off

Friday Club Nights for Juniors
After some unseasonable weather in May which meant that, for the first time in years, it was not possible to get out on the water, the weather is looking better for this Friday! As always, keep an eye on Facebook, Twitter and email to receive updates on whether sailing is on. Friday Nights until the end of June will be free to newcomers after which they will be asked to join the Club. We really need our helms down each Friday Night to allow as many people as possible to get out on the water. Volunteers to support shore duties including launching support, safety boat and BBQ are always welcome. We would also remind parents that they are responsbile for the safety of their children when they not on the water on Friday evenings, particularly when crossing the road between the Clubhouse and the slipway. We look forward to seeing members down at the Club this weekend.

Club Regatta
A placemarker for your diary for the Donaghadee Sailing Club Regatta which this year will take place on Saturday 29th August 2015. Our Commodore Nick is keen to make this years event as successful as possible and a small planning group is already working out the detail around what is an important day for the Club. As well as the sailing, there will be a formal reception for local dignitaries and afternoon tea for those sailing followed by a BBQ in the early evening with music. Look out on the website and Facebook for more details.

Summer Training Courses
Places are still available on many of the summer training courses. To see a full list of courses please check details here. A booking form for courses can be found here and should be dropped into the Clubhouse with the correct payment as soon as possible. We are hoping to introduce an online booking and payment system through our Club website very soon  – we will let you know when this is up and running.

We rely on volunteers to keep the Club running – we are a Club for members, run by its members and without your support we would not be able to achieve the huge amount of activity we undertake each year. In particular, please check rotas for safety boat, battery and bar duty. If you are not able to cover your slot on the rota please make sure you find someone to cover for you. If you are not on a rota and are prepared to help please let the Club know by emailing [email protected]

RYA Sailability
Sailability is a charitable trust set up by the Royal Yachting Association to provide the thrill and excitement of sailing to people with all forms of disability. Donaghadee Sailing Club has gained RYA Sailability Foundation Level Recognition and can offer sailing experience and training to those with disabilities. For many years, Tony Skeats has represented the Club and worked to promote Sailability. We are looking for new volunteers to support this work going forward. If you are interested please let us know by emailing the Club Office at [email protected]

Club Clothing
The new range of Club clothing has been going down very well with many hoodies and t-shirts already sold. If you would like to order any Club clothing, order forms can be found in the foyer of the Club and should be left in the office or passed to Andrew Miller with the correct payment. If you need more details of the range of Club clothing available please contact Andrew via Facebook or at [email protected]

Bow Bells Dinner at DSC
The Bow Bells dinner at the Clubhouse this Sunday, following Ladies Day racing, is now fully booked. Details of the next Bow Bells meal at the Clubhouse will be posted soon.

RYA Inspection
The Club received its annual RYA Training Centre Inspection last month. The visiting inspector was very impressed with the facilities, administration and policies that are in place for training at the Club. The Club subsequently received its approval as a RYA Training Centre following this inspection. Thanks are due to James Ogg who as our RYA Principal runs all of our training courses and who put much personal effort into ensuring that the annual inspection of our processes and policies went well.


Training Update

Posted on May 17, 2015 by | Categories Club News, Training | Comments Off

First Aid Course 18/19 May at 7pm
A First Aid qualification is required by all instructors and safety boat helms and anyone else who would like to do the course. There are three places still available. Cost is £25. Give James Ogg  a call on 07730006149 to book a place on the course that starts in the Clubhouse tomorrow night.

Safety Boat Refresher Course – Saturday 23 May 2015

It is required as part of our annual RYA inspection, that all RYA L2 safety boat helms and crews undergo an annual refresher course. This will take place on Saturday 23rd May. There will be two sessions – one from 0900 to 1300 and another from 1330 to 1730.

Please email your preference of morning or afternoon to [email protected] or call James Ogg on 07730006149. A list of current safety boat drivers is attached.

Champion Club Race Coaching was due to start on the 7th May but will not now start until 4th June 2015.

The Adult RYA Level 2 Dinghy course scheduled for the 23/24th May has been rescheduled until the 13/14th June.

For further information on training please contact James Ogg at [email protected]

Friday Night Sailing

Posted on May 13, 2015 by | Categories Club News | Comments Off

17180853445_9fd6ae34a8_oDear Member and Guests

It is the start of the summer sailing season and the Friday Club Nights for Juniors and we have numerous members, potential new members and guests expected at the Club over the coming weeks.  It is important and necessary to remind everyone of some of the Club rules at this time.
  • The free Friday Night ’try sailing’ sessions for newcomers are restricted to the first four consecutive Fridays, after which those attending are welcome to join the Club if they wish to continue sailing. We welcome all new members either as individual junior members or as family members.
  • Parents / guardians are responsible for the safety and supervision of their own children at all times when not on the water.  They must remain at the Club or on the slipway while their children are present. Please take particular care on supervising their crossing of the road between the slipway and the Clubhouse.
  • Please ensure that after sailing your children do not run around inside the Clubhouse, do not run out of the Clubhouse directly across the road and respect our neighbours’ premises. Children are able to play in the enclosed Courtyard or make use of the Balcony Room.
  • All non members entering the Bar area of the Club must sign the Visitors book in the foyer and be sponsored by a Club member.  This includes parents whose children are members of the Club but who are not members themselves. Non members are only entitled to be signed in six times a year.
  • Children (under 18 years) are not allowed to sit at the Bar and are not allowed in the Bar area after 10.00 pm.  They must leave but may wait for their parents in the Balcony Room.

These rules are there to ensure that everyone can enjoy the Club safely in accordance with the law and without annoying our neighbours. Please read and comply with them and ensure that your children behave appropriately.

We would also welcome help from all parents whose children participate in our popular Friday Club Nights for Juniors. An extra pair of hands to assist with registration, launching or help with the BBQ will always be welcome – please just let one of the Friday Night team know.

Thank you for your support

Yours in sailing
Nick Butler

Calling all Junior Sailors!

Posted on May 4, 2015 by | Categories Club News, Sailing News | Comments Off

Now that you have an RYA sailing qualification, its time to get out on the water at the start of the summer season and build your confidence through two new courses on offer at Donaghadee Sailing Club as part of our new Youth Pathway programme.

Early Racecraft for Juniors, which starts on Wednesday 6 May 2015 at 6.45pm and fortnightly thereafter, allows you to get ready for racing in the comfort of the Bay, perfecting your techniques on small courses. Your 2.5 hour session with a coach will help build your confidence and experience as you sail solo in Toppers, leading to the finale when you will participate in a full Club race with support from your coach throughout. A RYA Stage 4 qualification is required for this course.

Bridging the Gap for Juniors, which starts on Wednesday 13 May 2015 at 6.45pm and fortnightly thereafter, will provide structured 2.5 hour sailing sessions on the water with a coach to build your confidence in a boat. These fun sessions are designed to give you time on the water in supervised conditions to practice, learning new skills that won’t be forgotten. A minimum of RYA Stage 2 Sailing is required for this course.

Each course costs £25 and will run every fortnight for eight sessions. if you would like more information please contact James Ogg at [email protected]

An application form can be found here and more details on our Junior Pathway to get young people out on the water are available here.

It would be great to see as many of our young people as possible enrolling for these courses as we seek to build numbers competing in our Club Racing.

Our popular Friday Club Nights for Juniors start this Friday 8 May 2015 at 7pm with a registration evening. We look forward to seeing members, families, friends and potential new members down at the Clubhouse from 7pm when those who have not yet had the chance to do so will be able to register.

Burgers and hotdogs will be available from 7.30pm and a short briefing by the Friday Night Team will take place at about 7.45pm, allowing members and friends to spend the rest of the evening enjoying the atmosphere in the Clubhouse.

The first evening out on the water will be Friday 15 May 2015. Those who have registered should arrive down to the slipway from 6.30pm. We aim to get out on the water for 7pm. The attached leaflet provides more details.

We will initially only be able to get those registered by Friday 15 May 2015 out on the water over the first few weeks due the popularity of these evenings. We will try to accommodate those who register from Friday 15th May 2015 onwards as best we can, depending on numbers each week.

We will update our Facebook page and Twitter account  (@donaghadeesc) each week if the weather is likely to lead to sailing being cancelled on a Friday evening.

Please let your friends know about our Friday Club Nights for Juniors and bring them along as this is the primary way in which the Club attracts new members each year. Volunteers for Safety Boat, Slipway and BBQ duty are also very welcome – please email Danky if you are able to help.

We look forward to seeing everyone over the coming weeks.

The Friday Night Team

Friday Club Nights

Friday Night Sailing for Kids

Posted on April 23, 2015 by | Categories Club News | Comments Off

PosterOven-20150422070418Just under 2 weeks until the hugely popular Friday nights return!! Keep an eye out on the 2 links above for further updates as all the Friday Night Team look forward to seeing all the familar faces and any new ones that wish to try sailing out for the first time!!

Bow Bells Sunday Dinner – Sunday 26 April at 5.30pm

Posted on April 16, 2015 by | Categories Club News, Social News | Comments Off

The Club is delighted to announce that it is hosting a Bow Bells Sunday Dinner on Sunday 26 April at 5.30pm. the Menu will include a choice of Lasagne, Chicken and Broccoli Pie and Honey Mustard Sausages plus trimmings with a choice of the famous Bow Bells Desserts.

It’s a great event to bring down family and friends to the Clubhouse and enjoy some excellent food and company as the evenings continue to brighten.

If you want to book your place please add your name to the list behind the Bar at the Clubhouse. Places are limited so please make sure that you sign up early for this popular event.

Dinner Menu

Training Update – April

Posted on April 16, 2015 by | Categories Club News, Sailing News | Comments Off

Training Update

The training section of the Club website has been updated with all the dinghy and powerboat summer courses for adults and juniors. Advertising flyers have been produced and are being distributed over the next week around the area in shops, schools and cafés. Uptake for junior courses has been good so far, with some dates now nearly fully booked. To book a place on our courses, details of which are on our website, submit an application form and payment to the Club Office.

New Pathway

At our recent Members Briefing night we unveiled our new pathway for sailing at DSC for both juniors and adults. These documents show the progress from basic courses, to gaining experience, through introduction to club racing, race training and attendance at external racing events. These pathway documents are also available in the training section of the website and the various elements are included in the training programme. All the training elements must be booked in advance, by leaving a completed course application form and payment into the Club Office.
DSC Pathway 1

DSC Pathway 2

New Boats

The Club has been successful with another grant from Ards Borough Council, which is focused on increasing the competitive level of junior sailing in the Club. We have purchased three new Topper dinghies, along with a road trailer to carry the Searider RIB and Toppers to attend sailing events across Ireland.

Adult Training Offer

One of our key targets at DSC this year is to increase participation on the water through members sailing and competing in Club racing. Boat numbers are on the increase in the Club with an emerging fleet of cruisers, 25 Toppers and 22 GP14 two man dinghies. The challenge applies not just to our junior members but also to our adult members. We are therefore offering the following opportunity to 10 adult members:

Sign up for an RYA Level 1 course on 25/26 April at a cost of £80 and access a place on the RYA Level 2 course on 24/24 May free of charge, saving £80!

Team up as a crew in a GP14 and receive a further training on 6 Sunday mornings from 31st May allowing you to participate in Wednesday and Sunday racing for the rest of the year. Complete a form to book your place and enjoy a summer of fun, fresh air and a few beers afterwards.

Dinghy Park Fees

Dinghy park fees are now due for all craft and trailers in the dinghy park. Storage periods are (Winter )1st Nov – 30th April and (Summer) 1st May – 31st October. Payments are for each 6 month period and pro-rata payments do not apply. **

• Anyone wishing to keep their boat in the Dinghy Park shall complete the application form, available on the website or in the Club Office.
• The appropriate fee will be payable in the month prior to the above dates.
• Anyone overstaying their period will be liable for cost of the next storage period.
• All boats shall be identified with an ID sticker provided by the Club. This sticker will clearly indicate the period, sail number and a unique ID number.
• All boats shall have third party liability insurance. **
• All boats are stored at the owner’s liability and the Club accepts no responsibility for loss or damage.
• Boat owners shall keep the park clean at all times and remove any debris.

Club Boat Usage Procedure

A new procedure has been agreed by the General Committee for the use of Club Boats by members of Donaghadee Sailing Club. The aim of this procedure is to control and ensure the safe use of Club owned boats for racing by Club Members. Club boats (with the exception of the 3 new Race Toppers) can be used in the following circumstances and subject to the accompanying conditions:

(A) Use in Club Activities

For Club racing on Wednesday evening and Sunday afternoon

Anyone using a Club boat must firstly satisfy the Club of their ability to race safely before going afloat. You must complete an application (on first occasion only) for use of Club boats prior to use. By completing this form you are also acknowledging that you will be liable for any damage or loss while using the Club Boat.

A list of all Club members who have completed an application form for use of a Club Boat, which has been approved by the RYA Sailing Principal, will be displayed on the Club Notice Board.

Over 18s (excluding those in full time education under the age of 23) shall make a donation of £5 per day, for use of a Club Boat to be inserted in an “honesty“ box on the day of use.

All Club GP14s must be sailed with an inflated mast head float at all times. The boat number and users identity will be evident from the race record sheet. Anyone not making a donation will be excluded from the race results. Club Boats are available on a first come basis with no pre-booking.


For Club Training and Friday Club Nights

For all training events Club Boats can be used by members under the supervision of an RYA trained instructor.

On Friday Club Nights, competent helms with a minimum of RYA Stage 4 may use Club Picos, Toppers and Tera. A Senior instructor or suitably experienced adult must in attendance and Safety boat(s) must be present.

For any other sessions designated as social / recreational / disability sailing, a Safety boat(s) must be in attendance when Club Boats are being used.

Any other use of Club Boats at the Club must be agreed by the RYA Club Principal in advance.


(B) Use of Club Boat at an External Event

For use of a Club Boat to compete in an event away from the Club, a formal request and booking form and a donation of £25 per day is to be submitted to the RYA Club Sailing Principal at the Club Office.


Club Members shall report any damage or missing equipment and help us maintain our boats in a safe condition for the next user.

The 3 Club Race Toppers shall only be used for attending Topper Class events or with the express permission of the RYA Training Principal. They shall not be used for any other Club activities.