News from The Top Table (s)

A socially-distanced committee met outside at the Wooden Tables of Doom on Saturday to discuss "it" and our response. In short a special sub-committee has been set up to keep tabs on what the RYA and Scottish Government say we can and cannot do, which means not much change for the time being.

The shed and clubhouse are out of bounds. Estimates for fixing the roof are being sought of which more anon. With a good start made before lockdown and the discovery of roof issues, we should be able to pick up quickly where we left off, hopefully in time for a grand reopening in late autumn.

Finances are healthy, with around £12,000 in the kitty, a large chunk of which will be needed to refurbish the clubhouse, and all but a handful of members are fully paid up, for which the committee offered its thanks. With little activity at the moment it is heartwarming that members are prepared to support the club in hard times.

Meanwhile the Flying Fifteen fleet has been enjoying some close racing; perhaps the closest for some years, with all eight boats afloat.

Particularly heartening is the sight of three family teams, Sandy and Sean; Paul and Emma; Anthony and Gillie and their results suggest that having a regular crew is not only fun but fast.

When we are once more allowed to recruit crew from outside our bubble, we will be making a concerted effort to attract more members to sign up as crew. As you might have read elsewhere. what's not to like? Cold (sometimes); wet (often); abused by the helmsman (never, surely?); badly rewarded... but, believe me, great fun and you will learn how to sail better as a racing crew than bimbling about sails akimbo.

Please don't be afraid to ask any of the eight helmsman if you can crew; having your arm bitten off is nothing compared to the abuse you will receive afloat.

Junior sailing was on the agenda, and again nothing has changed other than we are determined to get the younger members out on the water somehow and at some time. Robyn, at the moment, can't see a safe way at LBSC although she has been teaching Toppers out East, so it must be possible given proper facilities.

Private dinghies are allowed to go out, but club boats under LBSC rules require a safety boat.

That leaves a Feva and a fleet of Picos languishing,  which was felt to be a crying  shame. However rules (and possibly insurance) is rules.

The insurance aspect is being looked at urgently to see if it is in fact a hard and fast condition in the schedule. 

In short: where there's a will there's a way. Anthony has been asked to come up with a solution so do get in contact if you have any suggestions. Perhaps some kind of minimum experience: 10 starts as helmsman in a Flying Fifteen...? No sailing outside a set area, or over 15 mph? Buying a club boat for the day for £1, and selling it back again (for £200!!) at the end of the session?

Of immediate concern is the dinghy park, which is full and it was felt that Something Must be Done.

However, unless there was evidence of dumping, the meeting rejected a suggestion that members parking their boats on the hard should be charged, on the principle established some years ago that the annual subscription should cover the use of all club assets, with the FF moorings the only ones that attract a fee to cover checks and Crown Estate taxes.

However, members who can remove any boats that are not in regular use are urged to do so. They can always be brought back when needed. 

Rain stopped play at around 5pm, at which all headed Royal-wards where any decisions were probably discussed, reversed amended or quietly forgotten. Plus ca change...

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