We would like to thank our members, you all know who you are for helping us out in a big way this year and to wish you all well for 2016. The club cannot continue to thrive without your help and support.
Thank you again and most importantly – Carry on making friends and HAVE FUN!Our success is measured in membership numbers and equally importantly, in smiles on faces!
From your Commodore and Committee members
For those of you who were not able to come along to our Annual General Meeting on 1st November you will be interested to learn that 2015 has been another extremely busy year for the club. In addition to developing work on the Ramp replacement and Compound extension projects the club has had to take an important decision on membership to comply with the Community Amateur Sports Clubs rules and regulations. These changes are important in order to continue attracting funding for the planned improvements to the club and for other financial benefits including rate relief and VAT concessions.
Form 2016 a new Varne Supporters Club is being formed to cater for the existing social members. Active water sports members will be invited to join The Varne Water Sports Club and a new token system will be introduced so that Water Sports members can show that they are regularly taking part in activities. More information about these changes and how they will affect you will be available with your membership renewal for 2016. You can also speak to your section leaders if you have any questions or speak to one of us at the membership renewals day.
It has been a fairly quiet year in regards to repairs and maintenance. Colin Greenwood thanks Richard Ovenden for his help and support with maintenance throughout the year and John Langton for his help, as without him the refurbishment of the social area would not have been completed before last Christmas.
Projects for the future include:
- Cupboards to be built downstairs to store all the old paperwork and paper files from the office
- Update the present office to give more space and to make things easier for the office staff.
- Review the lighting on the unlit sides of the club
- Review and replace as necessary the lighting at the ramp
- Tidy and reorganise the Bosun’s locker
- Update the wash down facility with an installed power washer.
There have been a number of meetings at the club involving committee members and representatives from the Royal Yachting Association, Natural England, Romney Marsh Partnership,The Local Planning Authority, The Environment Agency and BSF consultants.
We have received revised drawings and a commitment from BSF that the work will go out to tender before Christmas with work on site anticipated to start in the spring.
So watch this space!
As with the ramp project there has been a lot of work going on behind the scenes and we hope to have a timetable for the project early in the New Year. It is hoped though that the extension will be underway, if not completed, by the time of the club’s 50th anniversary next Summer.
On another note - we have only just found out that there are new plans to develop the ‘dip’ in front of the club by building 4 detached houses on it. We are having conversations with our New Romney and SDC councillors to explore how we can best influence the planning process and we have more recently met with Planning Officers at the club. Part of our discussions related to our continued safe access to the club and our plans to extend the club.
50 Year Anniversary
2016 will see the 50th Anniversary of the club and we are planning to hold a big celebration event next Summer. We are particularly interested in getting hold of old photos relating to the early days of the club so that we can put together a historical display. If any of the members have particular memories or anecdotes that they would like to share then please let us know. We would also appreciate some help in organising the event so if you have a few hours of your time to spare it would be greatly appreciated.
Activity Look Back
We’ve introduced over 200 people to various sports they had never dreamt of doing, including taking a group of children boat angling and we’ve also had a repeat visit from the guides. Boat fishing has been exceeding expectations for a few years now, drawing in new members from all over Kent and beyond. The beach continues to change at a rapid rate; the jury is still out there on what long term effects the new stop groyne will have. Please continue respecting the beach and the launching fleet and be safe! Talking of the dumpers – we’ve shown continued commitment to maintain them to a high standard with no expenses spared. We have maintenance records of the equipment, formalised our training procedures for new members, and have an up to date risk assessment.
It has been an excellent year for fishing, unfortunately the wind always seemed be to blowing a gale at the weekends, but for the guys who managed to get out midweek the Cod fishing on the wrecks has been outstanding.
The Bass fishing has been pretty quiet, we will have to wait & see if the new regulations will make an improvement to the stocks.
We have had another very safe year, only having to call on our friends next door a couple of times, so our thanks go out to them.
We have had steady flow of people coming and trying the sport this year with some of these have turning into new club members.
In April we held an international land yacht regatta which was a great success. We had land yacht pilots from as far as York and Blackpool and 3 French competitors, a total of 9
In November we hosted a Blokart regatta with pilots from around the UK attending. The Varne Boat Club is now known and regarded as one of the best venues for the sport in the UK .
In March, three club members' completed training and achieved their short range
VHF certificates, we also purchased three new VHF radios. In April, Nigel Sutton attended and passed his RYA Windsurf Instructor and SUP Instructor courses.
In May Waitrose gave us a further £310 to purchase more sailing equipment.and we received £300 of funding from EDF for some winter wetsuits
The RYA's (Royal Yachting Association) Development Officers, Sam Rowe and
Steve Mitchel also came to the club during May to offer more advice on training centres, water sport activities and more RYA grants that could be available to us.
The club supported the RYA's National "Push The Boat Out Event" over two weekends in May. The club gave out 72 free tasters in water sports.
We had a free water sports day and BBQ with the RNLI on 9th August, which was very well attended, it made a change for us to pick up and tow back the RNLI in OUR rescue boat!
In mid August, we sent our two club Topper Dinghies to Whitstable, to take part in the first ever National Topper Dinghy race. Considering the competition our sailors did very well, scoring a creditable15th place in their first ever race.
Over the last year, we have had over 500 water sport activities given out to members
and non members. We can show that all this extra water sports activity has helped
to increase the club membership again.
Next year we will continue to run the Club Sundays or Club Wednesday
evenings when tides allow.
The RYA's Push the Boat out will be over 9 days next year, from 14th - 22nd May,
this will be flexible so we can pick the days when the tides will work for us.