Welcome to any new readers of Tammy Matters
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Lifting of Covid related restrictions
As there is a considerable proportion of our Membership who are inclined to the view that, with the currently rising infection rates and the appearance of new strains of the virus, lifting all the restrictions completely and immediately is unwise. We are, therefore, going to adopt a step-by-step approach to returning the Club to operating in the manner we would like it to, but opening up as quickly as is considered prudent. The initial steps are laid out in appropriate places in this edition of Tammy Matters and will be on the Red Banner and Noticeboard in due time. I ask for your co-operation in this as we do not want to see the Club as an infection hub if we can help it.
Last Week 13th to 19th July
The third race of the G.W.Smith Trophy was held on Thursday in a decent breeze which held to the end of the race. The field of 24 entrants included 11 Lasers, 7 Merlins, 3 N18s, an Albacore and 2 Training-rigged Laser 2ks. – what will the handicapping reveal? See the report on the race by John Adams in News.
My thanks to Rupert Fletcher and Toby Powell-Blyth for running the race and to David Jones and Brian Harper-Lewis for manning the Patrol Boat. Thanks also to Nim Harris and Helen for providing a most popular Curry supper and Josephine and Megan for running the Veranda Bar.
The Junior Sailing session on Saturday, the last before the summer break, was followed by the Junior Barbecue run by Nim and Andy Harris. There was a bumper attendance and the party went on until after 9pm. Clearly a much appreciated success.
Sunday saw the Summer Series Class races, in the faintest wind which came from a variety of directions – none of them predictable. Five Lasers entered with Chris Taggart winning from Brendan Hills with Ros Warwick-Haller third. Three N18s raced, Chris Pollard, crewed by Alistair Banks, just winning on the water from Charles Fox, crewed by Robert Blakebrough with Henry Defries, crewed by Carolyne Vines, third. Nine Merlins raced with Andy Harris, crewed by Matty Key, winning from Peter Mason, crewed by Richard Mason, second and Tim Medcalf, crewed by Ed, third.
My thanks to Chris Balmbro and Sue Harris for running the race and to John Edmondson and James Berry for manning the Patrol Boat. Thanks also to David and Alden for providing lunches with Nim and Helen running the Veranda Bar.
Dutyman and Club Volunteer Duties
The Race Management team for each sailing day is published on the Dutyman System. You are reminded that it is most important for Members who are allocated duties by Dutyman to confirm their availability to attend in Dutyman (in the dropdown list under ‘Sailing’ on the website) well in advance of their duty. Otherwise we will have uncertainties and someone might have to stand-in for the absentee at short notice, as happened quite recently. If a Member knows they can’t perform their allocated duty they should request a swap using the Dutyman swap facility. It is the responsibility of individuals to find a substitute to do any duty which they are not able to do. Please remember to check the Club’s Dutyman system to see if you are rostered for a duty.
The G.W.Smith Trophy Series races will continue to be contested on Thursday evenings, 7:15 pm start (7:17 for N18s) through July and August.
Andrew Harris’ regular Saturday Junior Sailing session will be taking a break during the midsummer period, with the sessions re-starting in September.
The Summer Points Series will continue this Sunday (25th July), using our previously established pandemic format.
We will be retaining this starting format for the present, as it reduces crowding on the foreshore, and it has also been found to reduce the workload for the OOD as there are fewer boats racing at any one time. Any Members wishing to sail in the Handicap category on a Sunday is invited to share the start of the N18s.
On Monday 26th July the first of our five Summer Camps starts. As a precursor to this, we will be erecting a marquee on the lawn for the use of the children attending the Camp.
Changes to Rules for Sailing as a result of the lifting of restrictions
Following the lifting of Covid restrictions, Masthead Buoyancy will no longer be required and the wearing of Personal Buoyancy will be optional during the Summer season. If you are sailing when Patrol Boat cover is not available, Masthead and Personal Buoyancy is strongly recommended.
Sale of Club Clothing
We are holding a stock of Club Clothing which Zoe Adams, who currently manages this, is going to offer at Sale prices on Sunday 25th July. Details of the available items and prices will be advertised on the Tamesis Club WhatsApp and can be bought by Card.
Nicky Johnson has been arranging for volunteers to provide as much catering as is possible and if anyone who has not been approached would be able to assist, please get in touch with Nicky. In the immediate future, food will continue to be served in a box from the window to the right of the Veranda doors for those wishing to eat outside or will be brought to your table if you are seated in the Clubhouse. We are looking to establish a means for publishing Menus and for Members to register their intent to partake of the food and possibly to order in advance of events.
Leah Fraser has expressed an interest in running Paddleboarding Instruction and Paddleboard Yoga from the Club. She has been invited to run some trial sessions and we are currently determining the terms and conditions for her to run this enterprise. We are hopeful that this can be resolved in the very near future.
Resumption of Sailing and Use of Club Facilities
Checking into the Club using the Covid QR code or signing in the book in the Undercroft is no longer mandated but is encouraged.
The Changing Rooms are now open but Members are asked to allow social distancing to Members who request it. There is sanitising spray available which should be used to clean down the benches before and after use.
Following the lifting of Covid related restrictions we will be bringing the Clubhouse back into operation in a measured way. We plan to adopt a cautious and incremental approach to lifting the restrictions as there are many Members who are uncomfortable with the concept of abandoning all caution, all at once.
Initially we will be adopting a policy of keeping the Clubhouse well ventilated.
Phil’s Bar will be reopened but there should be no more buyers at the Bar than there are servers behind it. For the immediate future there will be a limited number of marked positions in the Clubhouse, for Members waiting to go to the Bar – additional prospective customers must wait on the Veranda.
With the lifting of Covid related restrictions, we are looking to move, in a measured way, towards what was normality. A full description of how we plan to operate is available on the Noticeboard and the Red Banner and will be updated as conditions change. Use this link to read the Tamesis Noticeboard.
Now the Club is busy again, the requirement for car parking is such that people can get blocked in by later arrivals. If you do not have a Club Car Park Ticket, or have mislaid yours, please get one from the stock held at Phil’s Bar – they are free to Members – just ask!
You are asked to put your name on the ticket and other helpful information, such as boat Sail No., if you are likely to be out on the water.
We now have a considerable number of Club Boats which are used for training and which are also available for Members who do not yet have their own boat, to use and to get more proficient. Unlike most other Clubs which charge for hiring Club boats, we like to provide these free to Members to encourage newer sailors to hone their skills and to support our training courses.
The boats do, however, suffer from wear and tear, damage and bits falling off accidentally. We rely on those who borrow our boats to let us know if a boat has suffered any depredations whilst they have been using it so that we can repair it and make it immediately available for the next person who wishes to use it. If you are unable to tell a Club Officer of any faults which have arisen whilst you were using a boat, then please report it on the Tamesis Club Sailing WhatsApp, or put a note in the Club letterbox, identifying the boat and the problem. Also, please pack boats away properly when you have finished using them.
The Club Boats do incur costs to the Club in the form of Insurance Premiums, River Licences and general upkeep and we rely on you not to abuse the contribution that Club Members make to enable you to use the equipment.
The Club’s Buoyancy Aids are principally for the use of our Junior sailors but can be borrowed by Members who have not brought their own to the Club or Trial Sailors who don’t own one. These are loaned free of charge but we do ask that you return them to where they came from when you have finished sailing. It has been noted that, at the moment, some of the Buoyancy Aids are missing and others have been found scattered in random locations. These are not cheap items and we ask you to take care of them.
Rear Commodore (House)
This Flag Office remains vacant. A description of what this Office entails is available and I would welcome an approach from anybody who might be prepared to take on this responsibility.
We are also looking for more volunteers, from both new and established Members, to assist with running Phil’s Bar and with catering. If you, or any friend who is not a Member of the Club, would like to help with this, please contact a Member of the Management Committee.
I would remind you that owners of all craft (including canoes and paddleboards) must 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 also want to check your insurance.
Advice on casual sailing, for those who wish to go on the river when there is no organised racing, is on the Tamesis Noticeboard.
For river flow and level readings at Kingston, which are relevant to our Reach, use Gaugemap at
https://www.gaugemap.co.uk/#!Detail/1249. or 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.