An opportunity to try sailing on Castle Loch, Lochmaben – for free – is being offered by Annandale Sailing Club on Sunday May the 12th.
The club is throwing open its doors for its annual Open Day from 12 noon to 4pm, giving members of the public the chance to enjoy a sail around the loch and find out more about the sport.
As well as sailing with one of the club’s experienced members, visitors can also explore the dinghy park, viewing different kinds of boats, and tour the clubhouse, where refreshments and home baking will be on sale.
Information on all the club’s activities, from novice sailing courses to racing, power boat courses and first aid, will be available.
Annandale Sailing Club’s new Commodore Helen Coles said: “We’re so looking forward to welcoming everyone to the club on Sunday and there is a great team of volunteers to help you out on the day and answer any questions. Sailing is a wonderful sport for people of all ages, families and individuals, and our club is a great location to try it.”
Helen, who lives near Lochmaben, took over the helm at the club in December. She and her family joined in 2008, after finding out about the Saturday training during the club open day, and have gone on to become long term, active members.
Having learned to sail at Annandale SC, her daughter Rebecca went on to compete in various dinghy racing classes all over the UK and is now a member of the British Keelboat Academy and recently became a qualified Yachtmaster.
Helen runs the club’s First Aid courses and her husband James runs Powerboat courses.
“Sailing has taken us in different directions and given us so many amazing opportunities,” she says. “As a club, we love to see new members joining and getting involved in activities in whichever way they like and we encourage all ages and abilities no matter what their experience .”
Annandale Sailing Club’s Open Day is part of RYA Scotland’s Push the Boat Out initiative which encourages Try Sailing events throughout May.
With no experience or equipment necessary, these events are aimed at complete beginners, as well as more experienced sailors looking for a way back into the sport or interested in finding out more about their local club. Families, children, partners, individuals, groups of friends – everyone is welcome.
Buoyancy aids are provided for anyone venturing out onto the water on Sunday. Soft shoes and weather-appropriate clothing should be worn.