Welcome to any new readers of Tammy Matters
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The Way Forward
There has been no significant change in the projections of what we will be allowed to do in the near future. However, to end the seemingly interminable Lockdown we are putting in place the measures which will allow us to run organised racing on Easter Sunday and, having got a positive response from Members, on Easter Monday as well. This will give Members an opportunity to shake the cobwebs out of their boats ready for the Summer Series. The format for these days is likely to be Class racing and the exact programme will be published in next week’s Tammy Matters.
At the Sailing Committee meeting last Tuesday evening (16th) it was decided that we would try to fit in as much of the intended Summer programme as possible and to achieve this will probably require some events being moved from their normal place in the calendar to later dates and some normally two day events being compressed into one. Andrew Harris will be starting Junior Sailing on Saturday 10th April and is looking forward to a good turn-out. We will launch the Summer Points Series on Sunday 11th April and the Saga Trophy races on Thursday evenings will start on 6th May. My thanks to Jim Green for organising the Race Management teams for our first three race days; population of Dutyman for further into the season will be published as soon as possible.
The exact conditions under which we must operate at any time will be set out in Tammy Matters each week. Initially, the toilets in the Changing Rooms will be available but the showers and changing spaces will not. We will be opening up the Changing Rooms and starting what catering and bar arrangements we are allowed as soon as permissible but we must, for the present, return to the Rule of 6 and 2 Households for all shoreside activity.
I will update the information on the Noticeboard and the Red Banner at each easement date to reflect the RYA interpretation of the current guidance which applies in England and to indicate the next date at which we can expect a further easing of the rules. Use this link to read the Tamesis Noticeboard.
Last Week 16th to 22nd March
Two Zoom meetings with other organisations took place last week.
The first, on Wednesday, was with Officers from Thames and Minima Sailing Clubs which concentrated on identifying the major hazards which affect sailing on our reach of the Thames, with a view to ensuring that we had a common approach at the River Users Group meeting the following evening. It was generally agreed that these were the unregulated wild swimmers, particularly those who did not have high visibility floats, and paddleboarders who were unaware of the rules of the river. There was also some concern over hired motor boats with inexperienced drivers.
The second, on Thursday, was the River Users Group at which there were over 30 attendees, The first, and major, part of the meeting was concerned with safety issues which, unsurprisingly, identified exactly the same issues as we had at the Wednesday meeting. This meeting was also attended by representatives from Turks and Go-boat who were also alert to the identified hazards and to the hazard which they could generate but indicated that they were taking action to minimise this. The second part of the meeting addressed the Reach Co-ordination which required little discussion by comparison.
No Virtual Regatta activity took place last week.
Tammy Natters was again attended by a small but animated group.
Until 29th March, recreation or exercise outdoors with one other person from another household is permitted which, by inference, suggests that casual sailing, obeying the Covid distancing rules, is permitted. However, the current RYA interpretation of the rules is as follows:
‘We do not currently believe that general boat maintenance falls within the intended definition of recreation, but where maintenance is essential to prevent risk of harm or injury it may qualify as a reasonable excuse for leaving home.
Clubs may need to ensure their facilities are ready for reopening on 29 March in advance of this date and we would advise you to limit the number of visits and people required to get your facilities ready.’
As I said in the introduction, we intend starting the Summer Points Series on 11th April. Initially we will use our previously established pandemic format with Starts for – Lasers 10:30, N18/Toppers/Handicap 11:00 and Merlins 11:30. We have to wait and see how the emergence from Lockdown progresses to decide when we can revert to our normal Start sequence.
Until the Covid social distancing rules are relaxed we will continue to require masthead buoyancy to be attached and any boat racing without it will have its result for that race in the Series voided.
Planning for the future
Jack’s Trip and Offshore Group Dinner
Saturday, 29th May 2021 on the Solent.
We would like to advertise and assess Members’ interest for Jack’s Trip (traditional one day Offshore Group Rally on the Solent) followed by a three course set Offshore Group Dinner at an appropriate venue located on the mainland.
Could interested Members please indicate to Daniel Gerber (firstname.lastname@example.org) by 14th April 2021 the following:
1) whether they plan to participate in the Offshore Group Rally during the day on Saturday, 29th May, with their own boat (or charter a boat) and if they have any space available for Members interested in crewing;
2) whether they would be interested / available to crew on a boat;
3) whether they plan to participate in the Offshore Group Dinner in the evening of 29th May.
A programme will be communicated in due time depending on interest and feedback from members.
Rear Commodore (House)
This Flag Office remains vacant. A description of what this Office entails is being prepared and will be published next week. I would welcome an approach from anybody who might be prepared to take on this responsibility.
Tammy Natters is now established at the new time of 11:45. The link will be available for anyone who would like an informal Zoom chat. It will not necessarily be hosted by Zoe Adams but will, for the time being, be there if you would like to join in.
The link is the same as was used for the Virtual Regatta and you will need to put in the Passcode.
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 966 4950 2135
Resumption of Watersports
Since none of us has been able to use our craft for some time I should remind you that owners of all craft (including canoes and paddleboards) should have a river licence. Quoted from the EA website
‘If you’re paddling on the non tidal section of the river (Cricklade Bridge to Teddington) yes, you need either a non powered pleasure craft licence available from the environment agency here or join the British Canoeing here. Either of these entitles you to paddle on the non tidal section of the Thames.‘ You might want to check your insurance too.
Sailing at the Club – as and when it becomes permitted
Advice on casual sailing for those who wish to go on the river when there is no organised racing, is on the Tamesis Noticeboard.
The river has calmed down considerably and the stream is decreasing along the length of the river and there is the prospect of a relatively slack stream for our first sailing after lockdown.
Check the flow and level readings at Kingston, which are relevant to our reach, on Gaugemap at
https://www.gaugemap.co.uk/#!Detail/1249. and on the Environment Agency site at
River Thames Conditions – Environment Agency.
Links for both these sites are also available via ‘Smithy On-line’, on the Home page of the Tamesis website.
Changes to the Racing Rules of Sailing, effective 1st January 2021
World Sailing has recently published changes to the Racing Rules of Sailing (RRS). If you would like to learn more, Chris Simon from the RYA gave the following talk which provides a very clear explanation. This video runs just over 1 hour and can be viewed at 2021 racing rules explained by Chris Simon. Int judge & umpire. Member of RYA Racing Rules Committee.
Joanne Zorian, who in normal times runs classes at Tamesis, has a new Zoom Pilates time-table. (The offer for 4 £10.00 classes at £35.00 remains).
Monday 10:30 60 mins General £10
Tuesday 8:00 45 mins Level 2 £10
Wednesday 10:00 35 mins General £5
Friday 10:00 35 mins Gentle & fun £5
Saturday 10:00 60 mins General £10
If anyone would like any more information they can contact Nicky Johnson on email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org