Voyage of ‘Discovery’

Ipswich & South Suffolk School Games ‘Discoverers’ have been selected to work alongside the Youth Sport Trust & Royal Yachting Association in developing an Inclusive Sailing Competition Format as part of a national Initiative.

We are delighted to be working alongside the East Anglian Sailing Trust, Felixstowe Academy and Hillside Special School in developing and piloting this project.

We have been into the schools to ask the ‘Discoverers’ what content they would like to see in the new format and discussed various elements of the skills participants would need to demonstrate.

We then invited them to a trial day at the East Anglian Sailing Trusts Waterside Centre at Suffolk Yacht Harbour on Thursday October 3rd where we had the most terrific day.

The youngsters were amazing and very keen to show off their new found skills and knowledge in a combination of classroom and water activities including naming the parts of a boat, knots, safety on the water, chart reading and of course being able crew members working as a team in the squib and sonar races along the River Orwell.

It was clearly evident that the 25 plus support staff and volunteers were fully engaged and enjoying the success of all participating. It was a very close run competition throughout the day where each of the ten crew from each school contributed to their team's score.

Felixstowe Academy were the winners by the narrowest of margins (301 to 309) however Hillside Special School can hold their heads up high by their team performance.
All participants were also successful in achieving their Royal Yacht association Sailability Bronze awards during the day.
We will be collating the feedback from everyone involved and reporting back to enable our pilot to play a part in formatting an Inclusive Sailing Competition Format across the Country.

On behalf of all the ‘Discoverers’ I would like to thank EAST for their continued support and passion in making sailing accessible for all in our community.

There will be further opportunities for ‘Discoverers’ to sail with EAST in the summer term meanwhile we hope to be able to pilot a sports hall version for you all to be practicing your skills in the very near future.

Watch this space!

-Danny Thorrington