Commodore's Newsletter April 2012
Dear Club Member
I am writing to you as the new Commodore of Frensham Pond Sailing Club. I feel immensely privileged and honoured to have been elected to this role in a Club that has such a rich heritage and big traditions and has truly been the nursery ground of champions. But at the same time I am aware that this is a fast moving world and that whilst protecting our customs I, and the General Committee, will not hesitate to implement an adaptive strategy as circumstances require.
I am so fortunate to have been left a Club in great shape and for this I am hugely indebted to the outgoing Commodore, Judith Young, for everything that she has done for the Club.
We all should be proud that FPSC is an inclusive, and not exclusive club, and that our members come from a variety of backgrounds and range of abilities.
I have chosen in this newsletter to write about some key topics that I hope you find of interest. We could really do with an editor with the skills to put e-letters together. If you are out there please take one step forward!
AGM January 2012
The AGM on Friday 27th January saw the retirement from office of many General Committee members. Foremost amongst the retirees was our Commodore, Judith Young, who has worked tirelessly for the Club during her nine years of service on the General Committee. In her time as Commodore so much has been achieved such as the completely overhauled Clubhouse that brought our worn out facilities into specification making the Clubhouse a pleasure to inhabit and much admired by members and visitors, In addition the jetties are new and the race hut and ally boat have new platforms; and of course we now have a new training facility.
What generally isn’t known is the immense amount time that Judith spent tackling the weed problem during the course of 2010 and 2011. Constrained by the restrictions of the various environmental agencies Judith took on solving what seemed like an impossible situation. After endless telephone calls and meetings an agreement was gained to cut an area of the Pond. Although the approved area was quite small the foundation had been laid to obtain greater areas of harvest in the future.
Also standing down were Clive Eplett (Hon. Treasurer), Nick Clibborn (Training Principal) and Wendy Neal-Smith (Community) and thanks go to these members for their outstanding contribution to the Club.
Please take time to look into the archive section of the member’s area of the website by opening the following link http://www.sailfrensham.org.uk/members/archives/. The User name is ‘frensham and the password is the Gate Code This is an important and vital resource excellently maintained by Graham Howlett. Under ‘Management’ you will find the presentations given at the AGM and these include The Commodore’s Report, Treasurers Report, Capital Expenditure Plan, Strategy Plan and Priority Goals.
And now we have a new General Committee who are really excited about the future. We are not resting on our laurels though and now that the physical infrastructure is in good condition we can concentrate on other important aspects of Club life. We’re all on hand to help you and answer any questions you may have.
The FPSC 2012 General Committee
Chairman of Sailability
Jeff Dolton Neil Hardie Iain Philpott
Commodore Vice Commodore Rear Commodore
Ian Cherrill Tim Hemsley Aaron Todd John Townsley David Hutley
General Secretary Sailing Secretary Treasurer Membership Secretary Training Principal
Ian Hiscocks Karen Ferguson Kate Richardson Kim Davies Nigel Bayly
Clubhouse Cadet Chairman of Sailability Social/Kitchen Race Results
Have you noticed our strapline .. Frensham ‘Leads the way in developing: champions, competitive sailing, training, Cadets, Sailability, Schools and Community’. We have noticed a few gaps in the ‘way’ and consequently we will be taking an extensive look at our offering to new and existing members. More boats on the water and a younger membership are our chief goals. Sounds easy, but its not and most clubs have tried and failed to solve these twin problems. We have a strategy that we hope will fill both these gaps. Its called the Frensham Pathway and we’ll be releasing details of this soon.
Our lease expires in 2024 and although twelve years may seem a long time it will soon pass and the opportunities for funding reduces as each year goes by. I have made it a priority this year to make significant progress with lease renewal negotiations; and this process is already underway.
At the AGM the membership approved an increase of membership and berth fees of 10% to take effect from 1st November 2012. Our costs have grown significantly in recent years and our income has not kept pace with expenditure and it is quite remarkable that we were able to hold membership fees steady for three years and berth fees for two years. I can’t rule out an increase of a similar amount for the 2013/2014 year but the newly convened Finance Sub-Committee will do all it can to avoid large increases.
Club Manager Appointment
Although we are predominantly a volunteer club we cannot escape the reality that we have to comply with a whole raft of Health & Safety and other legislation and this puts a high burden of work and responsibility on a few members.
You will probably have noticed that you cannot now just pop into the kitchen to make a cup of tea or borrow a spoon. To do so you will have to have a level 1 Hygiene Certificate and comply with the Clubs internal protocols. Then there’s data protection, fire and security, hygiene, kitchen inspections, RYA inspections, and obligations under all the various licences we have to hold. These are just some of the dull yet unavoidable regulations that we have to comply with. We cannot be negligent and we must obey them.
All this, and then dealing with contractors, casual staff, stock orders, banking of money, deliveries. Add to this liaison with pond user groups, the council and so on. More and more our Club resembles a business and it has all the responsibilities and duties of a small to mid-size company.
And so we have recruited a Club Manager to take on many of these jobs and he is involved in all the essential management functions of the Club.
I hope by now you have met our Club Manager, Julian Davies, and if not why not pop into the office to say hi. Julian is an experienced Club Steward who also has a retail background and his skills are ideally suited to the role. Julian’s contact details can be found on the Club website.
The Committee Room has now been converted into an office although it will also be used for occasional meetings and training events. Most of the Club’s records have been centralised either on the Club computer or in paper form and are now stored in the office. We need the highest standards of protection of this data and so please note that the Office key will no longer be retained in the key press and that keys will be issued only to those who have reason to use the room.
At present the Club Manager is working part time and he will be at the Club most weekends and at all of the Club’s key events. The Office will also be open for member and general enquiries two days a week: Tuesday 12 noon to 2pm and Thursday 12 noon to 2pm.
As a not for profit organisation the General Committee ensures that any surplus goes back into the Club to improve the facilities for members. It is also the General Committee’s duty, amongst other things, to spend membership fees and other income for the benefit of the members. Unfortunately the refurbishment of the Clubhouse uncovered additional work that had not been anticipated as well as incurring additional running and maintenance costs. This does mean that we have to be a little cautious with expenditure this year and strong financial controls have been put in place to manage this. A Finance Sub-Committee has been formed and this group will review all aspects of financial planning and they have developed a financial protocol, a copy of which is available in the management section of the archive.
We have noticed that some Club members have used their own money for the purchase of goods and services and then sought reimbursement from the Club. We recommend that this practice is stopped as this creates a difficulty in projecting cashflow and we see no reason why a member should fund the club. We have also provided a commitment that all our suppliers, contractors and other bodies are paid in good time from the receipt of an invoice.
You shouldn’t be too concerned about these comments; this after all is just prudent financial management, and in fact the General Committee is confident that its 2012 capital expenditure plans can be met and its high priority projects achieved.
Where we have been a little lax in recent times is in raising funds and this is to be considered an absolute necessity. The Club can learn much from Sailability who have a fantastic sponsorship and fund raising programme. We need experienced or enthusiastic fund-raisers and I am appealing to you to come forward and help us with this.
I do hope you were able to attend the Waverley Borough Council Ranger’s extremely informative presentation earlier this year on the subject of our weed problem. The Pond survey of 20th February 2012 showed that we have currently little weed growth, and the expectation is for us to enjoy a weed free 2012; and if we are lucky this could be the start of a seven year cycle – but let’s see. Below is a chart of the Pond showing where samples were taken.
Our hands are pretty much tied when it comes to weed control. However we are optimistic that the 10% cut authorised by Natural England could be extended next time round and so we are maintaining an annual cash reserve of £5,000 to use towards the cost of weed clearance.
The 2012 RYA Training programme is now under way and bookings are flooding in. David Hutley is the new Training Principal and just like his predecessor has a real heart for bringing children and adults into the sport we love. Our Chief Instructor David Hawkins and all our SI’s, DI’s and AI’s have signed up for another year. We now have four Laser Bahia training boats and these are replacing our very old workhorse GP14’s on a rolling replacement programme. We will endeavour to spend some of the money raised from this years 10 Hour Race to enhance our training facilities.
The advert to the left has been placed in the local press and has attracted many new course participants for this summer’s courses. There are still places left for the August training.
If you have watched the racing and thought you would like to learn how to sail why not request an application form and see how sailing can change your life!
Honorary Life Members
What a joy it was to see at the AGM two of our long standing members receive the Club’s highest honour. Congratulations and our thanks go to David Hawkins and Charles Watkins on receiving their reward.
Model Yacht Group
The group meet every Tuesday from 10:30am and the third Sunday of the month. Any model yacht sailor can now sail mid-week, although organised races will not be held during this time.
The Sailability season kicked off on Thursday 5th April 2012 following the fit-out supper on 30th March. To keep up-to-date with Sailability download a copy of their newsletter on www.sailfrensham.org.uk/sailability/newsletters.php. Please note the Sailability bbq is on Friday 17th August.
My thanks go to Andrew Kellard for his work in the collation of all the printed material for the handbook and producing a format ready for printing. Also a very big thank you to Erika and High Speirs for printing the handbook.
Race Results Coordinator
I am delighted to report that General Committee Member, Nigel Bayly, has agreed to take on the role of Race Results Coordinator. Nigel will be ensuring that our website shows up-to-date results and that Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday evening handicap results are posted to the web as soon as possible after a race. We have not performed well in this area over the last few years and it is with some relief and gratitude that Nigel has stepped up to the plate.
The members area of the website holds a significant amount of archive material. In here you will find various Club Policies that have been approved by the General Committee. The most recent additions include: RYA Course Charging Policy; RYA Course Children’s Policy; Financial Protocols and Honours Board Policy. In respect of the last policy, the General Committee has approved criteria for being honoured by the Club. Please note that to be recognised in 2012 as a winner of a major event you will need to sign on for that event in the name of Frensham Pond Sailing Club.
The group is going from strength to strength and now has a regular turnout of ten boats on a Saturday, and growing. Thanks go to Ian Cherrill for his passion and commitment towards junior sailing. Don’t forget to enter the Stig Challenge on the Open Day, with 8 one-lap races from 11am to 2pm.
Andy and Katie Shorrock have done a great job for our Cadets and once again Frensham can boast National Championship winners when Ben Hazeldine and George Bridge won the National title last year. Karen Ferguson will soon be the new Class Captain and we watch with interest the rise of her daughter Megan and all the other Cadets.
The Year so far
We’ve now come to the end of the Winter Series. The wind was uncharacteristically light this year although we enjoyed a mild Winter and lost just two weeks sailing due to ice, compared to the loss of six weeks in 2011 and also in 2010.
The results for the main classes are now in and congratulations to all those who took part. The top six places are shown in the table below. For the full results please visit the results section of the website.
||Total Nos. Racing
||Total No. Qualifying
||Ian Johnson/David Hay
||Colin Gilbert/Andy Majury
||Roger Carter/Keith Mundy
||John Townsley/Sally & Zoe
||Roger Miller/Matt Gourlay
|2.4mR Late Winter League
|2.4mR Late Winter Handicap
|2.4mR Early Winter League
|2.4mR Early Winter Handicap
|| yron Prosser
|Handicap – Saturday
|Handicap – Sunday
Don’t miss the Winter prize giving which is on the Open Day, Saturday 9th June 2012.
Nick Craig Celebration Lunch 4th March 2012
A lunch was held in the Clubhouse to honour the sailing achievements of our champion sailor Nick Craig. For fourteen years Nick has been winning major championships and in 2011 he was awarded the prestigious YJA Pantaenius Yachtsman of the the Year Trophy.
See this news section for more information on this event.
Thanks go to Kim Davies, Sally Townsley, Carol Clibborn and Sala Willis for making this such a great day.
The Frensham Frenzy 11th March 2012
The Frenzy usually consists of two pursuit races and is held in March as good wind can usually be guaranteed. However this year we only achieved one race as the wind tailed off to nothing in the afternoon. There was a fantastic turnout of 42 boats including 9 visitors. It was a frustrating time but Richard Smallwood triumphed to win the event that was sponsored by Guildford Marine & Henri Lloyd. For more information and results see the news section of the website.
A breathless Pond during the Frensham Frenzy
The Pond Superprix 25th March 2012
The was the second year of this innovative and rewarding event designed to improve starting skills. With a cloudless sky and a decent breeze thirty six boats representing the Club’s dinghy spectrum entered this fun and really practical competition. After the briefing by Race Officer Tim Hemsley, it was straight onto the water for the first of five morning races. After lunch the wind picked up a little and a further five races were run.
Tim presented prizes to the winners of each category as follows:
Not So Fast: Tessa Watkiss
Medium & Overall Superprix Winner: Tim Deacon
Fast: Nick Royse
The Lark and Phantom Open Meetings Sunday 1st April 2012
A full report appears under the news section of the website and on Yachts & Yachting online.
Three races were completed in a very light wind. Congratulations go to Stuart & Nick Hydon of Shustoke SC for winning the Lark Open and to Tim Hemsley for winning the Phantom Open.
The Reddie Trophies & Spring Challenge Trophy 6th & 9th April 2012
A full report appears under the news section of the website.
Congratulations to Nick Clibborn, winner of The Reddie Trophy and to Ian Gregory, winner of the Spring Challenge Trophy.
The Year Ahead
We have so much to look forward to this year, not least of which is the London 2012 Olympics and Frensham’s own brand of the Marathon, the 10 Hour Race! We want more boats on the water, a greater Sunday turnout and fantastic racing and leisure sailing. We hope the Pathway will move these aims along and with more coaching and mentoring and opportunities to sail, we can achieve this.
As well as the normal race programmes and Class Open Days here are some other key 2012 dates for your diary.
New Members Evening 13th April 2012
This Friday evening is dedicated to new members; that is members who have joined the Club for a year or less. However all are invited to come along and hear what the Club has to offer. Having joined the club it is important to see and hear what the club is about; whether your interest lies in class or handicap racing, recreational sailing, model yachts, disabled sailing, training and coaching, youth sailing or the social activities that take place throughout the year.
After a short introduction there will be an opportunity to discuss, in an informal atmosphere, any aspect of the club activities, either with a Class Captain, group representative or the Officers of the Club and General Committee Members.
Clubhouse Trophy 14th April 2012
The trophy was presented by T. Bath & Co. Ltd and is awarded to the winner of a Saturday Pursuit Race nearest to 10th April; as this was the opening date of the clubhouse, which this Trophy commemorates.
The Cadet start is at 2:27pm.
Wednesday Evenings – Starting 2nd May 2011
The evening light is stretching out and soon we will have Wednesday evening racing to look forward to. This is a great evening and a chance to compete against a vast range of dinghies. It’s also a good social occasion and there is the added attraction of fish and chips. There is always a good turnout and last year 81 boats took part. The season starts on 2nd May 2012, start at 7pm. Racing for the Morris Cup, Prunty Cup, Youth Laser Plate, Pauline Sheppard Trophy and the Mid-Week Novices Shield.
May Knott Monday 7th May 2012
This trophy was presented by past Commodore C. Draper and is awarded for the two races sailed over the May Day Monday. Both races to count. Ties to be broken in favour of the last race.
Friday Evening Leisure Sailing and Social Evening
In June 2011 Leisure Sailing was introduced. This proved very popular so much so that we decided to carry on with a social evening once a month long after the light had disappeared. We tried to introduce a mix of information, fun and social content into the evening and have experienced a talk on our weed problems by the Frensham Common Ranger, Steve Webster. Jim Morley recalled the early days of sailing at Frensham Pond whilst Clive Eplett expounded the virtues of the inner mind and discussed extracts from his book ‘Club Sailor – back to front’. Simon Lomas-Clarke hosted a Solo Fleet evening and soon Chris Ellis will be taking us through the results of the recent Club Survey. If you wish to use the evening to promote an aspect of club life then please contact Kim Davies.
From the first Friday in June 2012 we will be starting leisure sailing. This year we will make our Club boats available for hire and we will have experienced coaches on hand to help you progress. The Clubhouse will be open at 6pm and the safety boat will be on the water and cover will be provided from 6:30pm to 8:30pm to allow a little time for those coming home from work to get on the water.
The Club Open Day 11th June 2012
We plan the day to be bigger and better than before and the day is a great opportunity to showcase the Club. There will be a timed programme of events that will include amongst other thing: Fun sailing events; Taster sails; Boat jumble; Stalls; Ice-cream van; Membership stand; RYA & Club Training stand; Sailability stand. BBQ.
Further information to follow via email and the website.
10 Hour Race July 2012
The highlight of our year is of course the 10 Hour Race and this time we have an Olympic theme. Each boat will be representing a participating country in the Olympics. The draw for boat/country will be made by the Commodore on the Friday social evening in June.
Further information to follow via email and the website.
Club Class Championships 28th October 2012
This event marks the end of the traditional summer sailing season. For those of you who have never done this event before, it is a one-day, three race event for the honour of being crowned your class champion. The racing is slightly different from normal, in that a committee boat is used to start and finish the races rather that the standard club lines although the courses will be similar to normal.
Club of the Year Race 8th September 2012
Presented by John & Sally Townsley to commemorate the winning of the RYA Club of the Year Award 2009. The trophy is presented to the winner of the annual Club of the Year Pursuit Race.
First start at 2:27pm.
Vice Presidents Cup 16th September 2012
Presented in 1977 by Dr Hugh Lankaster on his retirement as Commodore.
A Veterans race open to any helms who are aged 65 or over on the day of the event and may be sailed in any class of dinghy. Helms of 2 person boats may be crewed by a person of any age.
Hook Helm of the Year Race 25th November 2012
The top three in each class battle it out to see who will be the best helm overall.
The Keene Cup
This Cup is awarded on the day to the winner of the annual Boxing Day Pursuit Race.
The Colin Watson Memorial for Frensham Pond Sailing Club Personality of the Year (Presented on Boxing Day)
Presented by Judith Young in memory of her father Colin Watson.
The trophy is awarded annually to a club member nominated by the membership (no age limit or category of boat) for:-
- Good Sportsmanship
- Contribution towards the Sport
- Promoting and helping others to maintain the love of sailing
Nominations for this year's award are requested by December 13th to the Commodore, together with a brief citation giving the reasons for the nomination.
Nominations can be made as follows:-
- Via nomination forms available in the Club to be placed in the nominations box
- Via the club's web site. just click on the following link http://www.sailfrensham.org.uk/awards/nomination.php
The three Flag Of?cers will consider each nomination and announce the result on Boxing Day.
Something to look forward to? Well yes, we had a fantastic turnout in 2011 and so much was done. We will be holding two work days, mornings only, and these will take place on 12th May and 4th November. Ian Hiscocks will again mastermind the work programme and it would be helpful if members would consider supplying tools and perhaps materials for the various jobs. One of the main tasks is, weather permitting, the staining of the outside of the clubhouse. Anyone with access to large quantities of stain (colour as existing) will be duly honoured! We need lots of volunteers between the hours of 9.45am and 1.00pm and there's a free lunch in return for the morning's work and normal racing in the afternoon.
The highlight this year will be the 10 Hour Race and the Christmas Party on 7th December, but please keep on any eye on the news section of the website for other social events.
The Winter series prize giving is on 9th June and the Summer Series prize giving is on 26th December.
If I have overlooked any group or person in this newsletter then I sincerely apologise. If I have then please let me know and I will ensure you get a mention in the next newsletter or on the club website. In any event contributions towards the next newsletter will be most welcome.
And finally … Our Volunteers
I would like to thank everyone who have over the years generously given their time and energy for the love of the Club; thank you so much.
It seems that nearly every Commodore’s report I have read has made a plea for volunteer recruiting and this newsletter is not an exception. We still have two vacancies on the General Committee and your contribution would be a very welcome addition to what already is a great team.
The work of the Club isn’t the exclusive preserve of the General Committee. We are not beavering away in secret society keeping everything within our domain and we are only too willing to delegate important jobs. Indeed we do rely on many people who are not active committee members. And so If the idea of committee work doesn’t suit you then please anyway consider volunteering your time.
Our membership fees are excellent value for money and we can only keep the fees low if we have a sufficient pool of volunteer help.
There are so many skills needed; here are just a few: IT specialist, Special skills in catering, Organising racing or events, Training – we can help you become an instructor, safety boat driver or race officer, General management, Singer, Marketing/communications, Musician, Fund raising, Accountant, Lawyer, Plumber and so on.
If you can help, please see me or contact any member of the General Committee.
Have a great year.
Frensham Pond Sailing Club