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October 6, 2015
Members of the Ladies Who Launch group at Ullswater Yacht Club celebrated their final session of the season with a party - on the water.
Fortunately their last session, on Saturday, October 3, was held in light and drifting conditions which were perfect for cups of tea and wine glasses on the lake.
Throughout 2015, a total of 21 members of all ages have taken part in ten Saturday morning sessions aimed at getting women on the water with no pressure and no formal instruction.
“The idea behind the sessions is to offer something for the ladies in the club who have spent years supporting partners and children who enjoy sailing. Now it’s their turn,” explained experienced sailor Anne Noble, of Brougham, near Penrith, who organises the sessions with fellow instructor Julie Archer.
Some ladies own their own boats but those who don’t are able to use various types of boats both single and multi-handed owned by Ullswater Sailing School based at the club.
“We have been grateful for the equipment which has been a contribution to the success of these sociable, fun, supportive, sailing sessions,” said Anne.
After on-the-water celebrations, the ladies got together on the shore for the annual presentation of the Endeavour Trophy, a brass anchor donated by Julie Archer. Maria Golden of Stainton, near Penrith, won the award for the improvements she has made helming on her own over the year and her cheerful commitment to the sessions.
“When I started to come to the sessions I thought ‘I can’t do it’. Now I know that I can,” said Maria.
“She is a well-deserved winner,” said Anne Noble. “She is a valued member of the group.”
Anne said she was delighted with the turnout for Ladies Who Launch which has been held for the past three years and also pleased at the way the ‘new’ sailors go on to take part in the special novice races that are held later on a Saturday.
“We had a windy start to the season when it was cold and wet but we have not missed a session all year. We have always found plenty to do, despite the conditions and the ladies are so keen. Also we have great fun together.”
The Ladies Who Launch group is proud to be part of Active Cumbria’s ‘This Girl Can’ campaign which was set up by Sport England to encourage women to take part in sports activities. And the group has been so successful that similar men-only sessions, Blokes In a Boat, run by instructors Steve Potter and Rick Boyce, have been held at UYC for the first time this year.
Ladies Who Launch and Blokes in a Boat are looking forward to their fourth season on and off the water with eight sessions planned for in 2016.
Ullswater Yacht Club welcomes new members, both experienced and novices, of all ages and offers sailing courses through the Ullswater Sailing School. For more details visit ullswateryachtclub.org or contact 01768 486333