Autumn 2008


Commodore's writes

AGM, prize giving,party

Annual dinner

Bewl Valley SC visit

Bosun regatta

Break in

Chichester Harbour

Cundy trophy

Development strategy

Fifty years on


General stuff

Hungarian gypsy music

In town without my car

Midsummer cruise

News of members

Newsletter printing

Penalty turns

Quiz night

Sailing after end season

Signet open meeting

Social calendar

Some needed input

Work party


AQSC Development Strategy - Nigel Knowles


Some time ago the decision was made to embark on a substantial program of refurbishing and improving the Club's premises. In recent years we have progressively added a store room, renovated the ladies and gents changing rooms and shower, rewired and re-carpeted the clubroom, installed new windows and built the quarter deck. One further project that is planned is to refurbish the galley over the coming winter.

This programme of improvement has been funded in part out of our regular income (i.e. mostly membership dues) and in part from cash reserves. In consequence our reserves our now substantially lower than they have been for many years and the Management Committee feels that it would be imprudent to erode them much further.

We thus face a dilemma - do we curtail the improvement programme? - or should we boost our income by increasing subs and/or charges for social and other activities?


This article sets down some ideas to act as a focus for an informed discussion about how the Club should develop. The ideas are not intended to be firm proposals; they are meant only to inspire thinking and debate.


Our facilities (club room, changing rooms, car park, berths etc) are generally adequate for the current number of members. True, the Clubroom can appear small and somewhat limiting for some social occasions and some have argued that we would struggle if the membership were to grow to any extent.

However Clubs like Hampton, Minima and Thames all manage with similar size facilities and have substantially larger memberships. Nonetheless a number of improvements are feasible and would arguably make life more comfortable.

In addition to the new galley and refurbishment of the launch ramp which are already planned, these could include

•  Remodelling the bar to provide more storage (by using part of the foyer) and better fridge and freezer facilities

•  New, more secure entry doors to the foyer and quarter deck

•  Decking over the old concrete top deck and expanding its size

•  Providing glass side panels to the roofed area of the quarter deck to create a conservatory for the cooler months. The panels would be demountable so that they could be removed in the summer months.

•  A heavier weight, customised "tent" to cover the quarter deck for social events

•  A floating pontoon alongside the laser berths to facilitate launching and retrieval

Club boats

We currently have eight club boats; (3 Lasers, Pico, Topper, Fusion,  Grad and Bosun). They are generally low maintenance and we make no charge for their use. In the last couple of years they have been quite well used, especially by new members and they appear to be an effective way of attracting people to the Club and introducing them to sailing.

Several are beginning to look a bit tired and it would be sensible to replace some of the worn out equipment (e.g. laser sails, foils and riveted fittings), before they fail completely  In addition if we want to promote an active youth section then further boats (e.g. picos) and/or alternative rigs (e.g. laser radial) are needed.


Subs have not increased since 1994 and berth fees since 1997. Moreover the entry fee and Club boat hire fees have been waived in recent years. The cost of membership, in real terms, is at an all-time low (the increase in RPI is some 40%). Membership is cheaper than all other clubs in area.

While the Club's finances are quite sound, we cannot continue to improve and develop the Club's facilities as we have been doing without extra income.

It can be argued that the membership fees are low enough for people to join the club who only intend to make casual use of it. If membership costs were higher then members would be more likely to question what value they got from the club and make more use of it.

There is anecdotal evidence that a number of people find the boat storage charges low enough not to have to worry whether they use their boat or not. While the Club's byelaws stipulate that all boats must have a current EA license and therefore be in a seaworthy state, clearly a number are not compliant. The worst ones reflect badly on the Club and arguably tend to attract attention from passing yobs.  Should we increase the fee for those that don't comply?

There are also a number of trailers that appear to have been dumped on the premises; if we were to make a nominal charge, then it would be easier to identify the owner and/or get rid of abandoned ones.

The table sets down a possible fee structure in response to some of these points which would increase the Club's income by approx 10% other things being equal. I emphasise that these are not firm proposals, but are put forward to provide a basis for discussion about whether we should revise our subs.

The Management Committee will be making proposals to the AGM on December 6 for any changes: please feel free to air your views with any Committee Member before then or email me directly.


Possible Revised Fee Structure




Full Members



Full Members (TW Plc staff)

 Boat owner



 Non boat owner



Family Members - Sailing partner /



 Non sailing partner / Children

£6 each

£ 6 (£12max)

Junior Members - under 18 years



Junior Members - 18 - 21 years



Berth Fees

 1st Dinghy



 each additional Dinghy



 Dinghies without EA license






Berth fees apply to all craft left anywhere on the premises longer than 1 month.