South Staffs Burgee
South Staffordshire Sailing Club
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Good News Friday - 26 February

Good News Friday – 26 February 2016


Who’s on Duty?

  Sun 28 Feb 2016   Spring (1)  
  OOD   Terry Edwards
  Assistant OOD   Darren Heath
  Safety Boat Driver   James Goss
  Safety Crew   John Fergusson-Cooper
  Galley Supervisor   Lara White
  Galley Assistant 1   Steve Taylor
  Galley Assistant 2   NOT AVAILABLE
  Bar Duty 1   Will Croxford
  Bar Duty 2   Nat Croxford

Useful Info - This Weekend

It's a busy week at the Club starting with the Annual Dinner Dance and Prize Giving on Saturday night followed by the first round of the Spring Series on Sunday. So, don't forget, we are moving to 3 races from this Sunday, AM PY race at 11.30am, and two class races at 1.45pm and 3.30pm in the afternoon. We then have the AGM on Tuesday night (further details below). If you can make it please come along and hear the proposals for the next 12 months as well as thanking Mike for his efforts as Commodore this year and welcome in the new team.

Useful Info - Raffle

Dave Timmins has managed to secure a fantastic raffle prize that will be drawn at the Dinner Dance on Saturday. The raffle is in aid of Junior Training funds and the prize is a trip for eight to the Land Rover BAR base at a mutually convenient date. Further details will be announced on the night.

Save the Date - All Fleet Training, 5 March

The next All Fleet Training Day is on Saturday 5 March, the focus is on starting, the rest of the details are a closely guarded secret only released on a need to know basis if you have the special password....(in other words they will be available as soon as Martin Evans sends them through!)


Some useful advice was posted on the GP14 Facebook Page this week from someone who sailed at a Fireball event there: 

"Don’t be tempted to sail in a shortie. We wore 1mm Magic Marine leggings, and a long sleeve rash vest – that worked. There’s plenty of time to get a tan. Some of the blisters people got on their thighs were awful! We used Boots kid’s Factor 30 or 50 waterproof suncream – worked a dream and didn’t run in your eyes. We also mixed rehydration tables in with our drink (you can just add salt).

The flying fish sandwiches at the club are great. So is the rum!"

Also, if you are too young to remember the very catchy 'woah, we're going to Barbados' song, please check out the Club Facebook page for a post that was shared this week (or there is a link in Best of the Web below). It isn't compulsary that you learn all the words before we go but it is strongly recommended!

Spaces on RYA First Aid Course, Saturday 19 March

This is primarily aimed at people who would be helping with our Junior Training but also at other people who contribute to training at the club. 

We have seven people enrolled at the moment and as the course has a maximum of twelve places we could still take another five. Please let Roy Alexander know ASAP if you would like a place 

His e mail is

Sail a Nail Club League - Starting this weekend!

I have been wondering about how to get some water time whilst our boats are away on their holidays to Barbados and have had an idea!

After some negotiation it looks as if we can have the use of the club GP’s for a few weeks.

The way  I see this working is that we turn up with kit then draw numbers on a boat (1,2,3,4,5,7,8,and 11 are available) and then just with maybe 30 mins to prep, go out and “join in” on the races just to get the water time. The idea is this is a random draw.

Now obviously these are not the finely tuned racing machines we are used to – but it’s just luck which one you get!! The absence of any spinnakers should focus the mind!

The new training boats have been deliberately excluded as they represent fat too much on an advantage.

We will then run a series amongst us with the title “Sail a Nail” (I have checked with the Bosun and this is a fairly accurate description!)

We are even looking for a prize!

This is not restricted to just the Barbados crowd if anyone else wishes to join in. The arrangement will be:

1 – The boats must be signed out by the helm on the sheet in the club house.

2 – The insurance excess must be covered by the helm.

3 – Rudders and sails (although if you have your own then I think we can allow that) are on the ‘mezzanine above the boat house and should be retrieved and returned.

4 – In accordance with club rules no series race points can be awarded. So this is just amongst ourselves.

5 – Please sign off as DNF just to avoid confusion with the results.(You will probably get “written down” by the OOD so signing off as DNF will help there).

Please report any issues with the boats back to the Bosun (Steve Baker) as this will help everyone. Keep it polite.

Rob Hicklin
Sail a Nail League Manager

Open Day Promotions - Please rate and review our Facebook Page

It is this time of year when we start to promote the Club’s Learn to Sail courses and also the Open Day. We know that potential new members check out our Facebook Page, as well as the website, to find out more about the Club. The ‘Rate and Review’ section on the Page is a good way of showing off about how great the Club is but we only have 18 so far so if you get a change please can as many people as possible give the page a rating?

Club Development Update

At the Annual General Meeting last March a plan was presented to apply for grant funding to help develop the club house facilities. Unfortunately our application was not successful, the stiff competition from other applicants being the main reason for this. The General Committee believes that although we have a superb club house, improving our facilities is something we need to actively progress. We are very fortune that due sound financial managements aided by the huge amount of voluntary work members contribute, the club funds will allow us to continue this development. The next phase is expected to primarily focus on extending and improving the changing rooms, and the details will be outlined at the next AGM.

A small subcommittee has been set up to define priorities within our budgetary constraints, and whilst the trade is well represented we are looking for members who may be able to assist in the design and regulatory compliance of the project, if you can help then please speak to me at the club (I am there most Sundays) or e-mail me.

If you are not an “expert” but just a willing volunteer who can offer help don’t be disappointed, as during the last development phases, there will be plenty of opportunities to help later in the year. As ever by offering your time as a volunteer we will be able to keep the costs to the club down to a minimum. We will keep you updated on plans and progress. 

Martin Warburton
Rear Commodore

South Staffs Social

This week we were pleased to welcome Chris Blackburn from the RYA to talk about the pathway to podium.

Despite the small numbers the club were given a great insight into what is on offer to the kids of today in the sailing world. Chris Blackburn came to talk to us about what the RYA provide and how any of our junior members can access the training on offer. Clubs like South Staffs form the backbone to all sailing and it is surprising how many of todays Olympic contenders started out on small inland waters just like South Staffs.

These days race training starts at clubs with the opportunity to move into the “Pathway” programme at almost any stage in a youngsters sailing career. Zone squad sailing is supported by Class Association training within an area so no longer is there a need to travel vast distances to get additional great race coaching.

To emphasis the opportunities within sailing Mike and Gale Norbury gave us an insight into the sailing life of both Alison and Sarah their two daughters. Alison did almost all her early sailing at South Staffs before going to University and finally becoming commodore of their Sailing Club. Sarah built on her early experience with us to compete internationally first in the Optimist, then the 420 and is now hoping to get into the Elite squad in the 470.

Sailing is one of a very few family sports where parents and children can sail together or compete against each other on equal terms. Chris did emphasis the huge benefit that sailing also gives in Transferable skills. At every level all sailing activities develop communication skills; organisational skills; time management, help with decision making as well has having an important element in nutritional and fitness levels. 

A great evening and one that will be conveyed to and implemented in, the junior activities planned for the coming year.

 Sat 27th Feb – Dinner Dance at The Mount, Tettenhall

 Tue 1st Mar – Annual General Meeting

 Sat 5th Mar – Coach Trip to the Dinghy Show at Alexandra Palace, London - £20 Adults, £10 Under 15 

South Staffs on Tour

The latest OK newsletter is out this week: with details of forthcoming events. The GP14's are off somewhere sunny soon in case you hadn't heard, we will keep you updating with latest news in the build up and during the event. If you're a Solo sailor thinking about events this year new fleet captain Paul Bottomley will be travelling and has details of local events that may be of interest. 

Travelling 2016 Fixture List:

Lark Fixtures for 2016 can be found HERE.
GP14 Fixtures for 2016 can be found HERE.
Solo 2016 Fixtures can be found HERE
OK (UK) Fixtures for 2016 can be found HERE.

Don't forget, if you're taking part in any open events and want to let everyone know how you got on, email us at:

Capsize of the Week

There were a fair few capsizes on Sunday, myself and Chris Cook included, however this week's winner probably needed a little more reminding about what to do when in the water. It was, apparently, all the helm's fault and made everyone else on the water who capsized feel better. After all, if John Billington is going in, it must have been a tough day's sailing!


As you may have heard the boats that are going to Barbados have been packed up and sent over the past couple of weeks. One of our sailors, Nick Brandon, agreed to take his boat to Poole to be packed. Nick had planned for this moment for over a year, even buying a second boat for Barbados. Unlike Nick, he ended up rushing on the day and getting all the way to Poole before remembering that he had left his sails at home! Well done Nick, you get the Homer Simpson Doh Award. Hope you managed to fold them flat enough to fit in your suitcase.

Facebook Fun

Some great pictures of Barbados (and if you're already sick of the Barbados song watch it with the volume down!)

If you ever have anything you want to share with other Club members or the world at large you can post directly Facebook page, Group, tweet @SSSCTweet or email: the deadline for Good News Friday each week is 9pm Thursdays.

Michelle Evans - 26th February 2016

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