A great many people of all ages and abilities took to the water and experienced sailing this weekend (18-19 May) with RYA Push the Boat Out. The national event saw over 120 sailing clubs and centres up and down the country opening their doors to their local communities with Push the Boat Out ‘have a go’ sessions and open days.
'Push the Boat Out gave people the opportunity to get down to their local sailing venue, find out what the sport has to offer and discover just how easy it is to get involved' explains RYA Sport Development Manager Jon White.
'We were overwhelmed to see so many clubs taking part and hosting fantastic events which gave people of all backgrounds and abilities the opportunity to experience sailing and windsurfing locally' he concluded.
One of the clubs taking part was Papercourt Sailing Club in Surrey which welcomed 280 visitors to their open day on Saturday.
Club Secretary Tessa Key said: 'We believe our Push the Boat Out Day has been a huge success. It’s been really good for us to be part of a national event because we’re very proud of what we have to offer here at Papercourt. To know that other clubs across the UK are doing the same thing to encourage and promote sailing is a really great feeling'.
Greenwich Yacht Club in East London also opened their doors for those who live locally. Club Commodore, Lionel Willis said: 'We hope that a percentage of the people who came to visit us this weekend will say 'this is a great idea, I like this' and will come back to join the club, find out what training courses are on offer and get involved.'
Paula Bentley, Commodore at Felpham Sailing Club said: 'We’ve been running sailing and windsurfing taster sessions from the beach and it’s been brilliant. I would definitely recommend Push the Boat Out to other clubs. It’s a great way to get lots of people coming in your doors, whether they are trying sailing and windsurfing for the first time, or looking to get back into the sport'.
To find out more information about Push the Boat Out visit www.rya.org.uk. by Susie NationGrainger