As a few of you know, I’ve been thinking about stepping down this year, but couldn’t find anyone who was interested in taking over, although one or two of you were willing to join the committee should anyone leave it. But now the club is running smoothly, we’re in a good financial position and the council are very happy with the way we behave around the pond, and maintain the clubhouse, next year may be an ideal time for someone more socially skilled than myself to take over, because I know I can come across as a bit rude, dismissive, or forceful. Or, as Reg would put it, “An anchor”.
I’ve noticed that our chairs are becoming a bit rickety, so have asked Peter and Keith to look on the internet for some comfortable replacements because I don’t want to see someone hurt themselves on a piece of equipment that we know needs replacing.
The tea pot fund has ran into the shallows a bit of late, so can I remind you all not to forget to put your pennies in.
It was agreed at the AGM that subs are to remain at £20 next year but for the joining fee will be increased to £20, and the late payment fee will be £10. With postdated cheques and a month to pay, there really isn’t any excuse not to pay within the allocated time.
The AGM also agreed to introduce a visitors book which has to be filled in, every time you bring a visitor. The number of times someone can visit the club is limited to 3.
Plus, if a member leaves or has not renewed their membership for a year because of reasons other than serious ill health, they will not be allowed to rejoin again.
By introducing a visitors book we cover ourselves on matters of insurance and to ban ex members from rejoining, means that trouble makers and those who may have voiced that some of us, or our club didn’t meet their expectations, don’t just wonder back when they realise what a great little club we do have.
This may sound quite petty, but personally I don’t see why those people who leave should enjoy the facilities of the club as and when they choose to return, because without your regular support, we wouldn’t have a club and it’s not fair that committed members should subsidise those who think the club is here for their convenience.
It’s been said that we dont lay on any events. I can only say that whenever we’ve tried they’re hardly ever attended or very little interest shown, so its your club, you tell us what events you’d like and we’ll see what interest there is.
Heating is a odd thing to mention, but a number of you have said its often very cold in the clubhouse. Please don’t sit in the cold, we have 3 heaters and plenty of money to run them, so if you’re cold either ask someone, or turn the heaters on yourself.
It’s your club, if you are not happy about something, tell me or a committee member, but please don’t sit and suffer in silence.
I’ve procured a brand new gazebo for free and its located in the box beside the ladies table. This has replaced our old one which suffered greatly as a result of the flood a few years ago.
I’d like to mention that we now have an independent accountant who goes over the books and has confirmed that everything balanced to the penny, so many thanks to Leslie and Sandra
Speaking of Sandra, I would like to mention how disappointed I am to hear how the odd member speaks to her, or causes her extra work when it comes to collecting subs, or asking who’d like to attend various events such as the Yule meal. “Yes please”, “How much”, or “Not for me thanks” will do. What she can do without is unhelpful comments and opinions.
I’ve also reintroduced the model of the year award and I’ve split it into two groups, namely power and sail. You’ll never pick the boats that everyone will agree on, so Sam our assistant commodore and I decided to make ourselves the judge’s and no, it isn’t the only way I’m ever going to win anything.
It gave me great pleasure to name Reg as winner of the power section for his tug, and Tony Brett won the sail section for the design and craftsmanship he’s demonstrated in producing the sandbagger with little more than an old black and white photo to work from.
Talking about Reg has prompted me to thank him for the energy he has put into stirring up a renewed interest in motorboats and tugs.
The end of year awards were presented as follows:
The Metal Hammer Award. This award is aimed at those who muscle, bang and bump their way to the front. Shouting “starboard” or “water” means nothing to these guys, and trust me, we have a few of these boneheads in the club. Having considered the questionable quality of seamanship displayed on the water, especially when racing, we had a clear winner this year, someone who definitely does his talking on the water, and that person was Basher Bob.
The overall Barge winner was Brian Curry
The Thames class of Barge was won by Tony Brett.
The one metre class was also won by Tony Brett
In the Super Yacht class Barry Luckin was way ahead on points, but without regular competition and an overall lack of interest in this class, I decided to drop this years super cup. I’m sure you’ll all agree that unless its hard fought for, a cup isn’t worth winning, so please, if you have a large yacht, race it next year, because they do look superb on the water.
The Grand raffle was won by Brian G, 2nd prize went to John S and 3rd prize went to Keith H, so well done them.
2017 has been a sad year for a number of our members who have lost and must sadly miss their loved ones. I’m no good with words, so won’t say any more, but our thoughts have been with them throughout the season.
It was lovely to see some new faces at the Yule meal and an absolute pleasure to sit near someone who was so bubbly and laughed throughout the afternoon. I won’t say who it was, but she is married to a builder who’s main tools seem to be either gorilla expanding glue, mastic filler or a very big hammer. Oh yes, and his best mates name is Peter.
Adding £3 to the price of the meal also seemed to be widely accepted as better arrangement regarding the raffle prizes.
Also, in the hope of making the meal a more social event where people may stay and chat for a while, I’ve asked Sandra to enquire about having the cheese course served on paper plates in the future.
Don’t forget that the races start in January and that points make prizes.
The barge races are on the first Sunday of every month, the super yachts will be on the 2nd Sunday and the one metres on the 3rd Sunday.
Stay warm and healthy during the coming season and lets hope next year brings us some fun sailing and fewer collisions!
PS I’ve already seen Peter Bowery’s new salmon fisheries vessel which is nearly finished, so if you want to win the power boat model of the year in 2018 it’s going to have to exceed even my build standards because Pete’s boat is excellent.