Autumn 2005
AGM, Prize Giving and Party
Annual Dinner
Christmas Is Acoming
Bewl Water in August
News of Members
Palm Court
Regatta, Jazz & BBQ
Richard Does It Again
Sail Training Manual
Sailing Secretary Report
Salcombe Sojourn
Social Calendar
South in a Westerly
Teddington Theatre Group
Twelve Days Of Christmas
Ugly Ducklings
Upstream Launching Ramp
Web Site
Winter Reminders
Working Party


Commodore's Report
  Monday 20 June was a bit of a red letter day. I finally posted off the application for the new Club Premises Certificate to the new licensing authority and the Police. It took nearly three months to prepare. What a bureaucratic load of old cods! And that's putting it politely.
   If we were a 5,000 capacity night club in the middle of Kingston, serving drinks till god knows what time in the morning, fighting a drugs problem and viewing anti social behaviour as a way of life I could understand all the palaver concerned with getting a new bar license; but for a small, non profit making, private members club it does seem a tad OTT.

   Mind you, I've got my eye on some of our senior members, too much sugar in their tea and they go berserk. Square dancing, ballroom, lace making, you name it, the’re into it. The management committee might even have to start issuing OAP ASBO's to curb their disturbing gardening, bird watching and stamp collecting fetishes. 
  Recently the licensing authorities have been expressing concern that very few establishments had submitted their license applications. The media meanwhile were saying that the reason for late submission was that the application forms were incomprehensible and wide open to misinterpretation which could lead to application rejection; but as the 6 August got nearer and nearer a look at the public notice pages of the local newspapers made interesting reading. More and more concerns took the plunge to get their applications in, many taking the variation option to extend their current licensing hours.
   More recently the national newspapers and TV have been having a field day regarding the potential ramifications of allowing 24hr drinking. It's a bit late for that, perhaps they should have given the subject a little more deliberation when our esteemed government, and I use that word loosely, first proposed easing the licensing laws as a way of combating binge drinking.
   I suppose there is a twisted logic in their thinking but it certainly isn't in tune with what's actually going on in the streets. Most of the kids I know just view the new policy as an opportunity to spend longer in the clubs and pubs.
   It's going to be interesting to see how 'the authorities' plan to deal with all the businesses that may still not be licensed after the published cut off date and possibly even more interesting to see how our already overstretched Police are going to deal, in real terms, with the ramifications of what is about to unleashed by this ill thoughtout legislation.
   Do you have a view on the above? Drop me a line and I'll publish it in the next edition of The Main Sheet.
   Update: Well what do you know, it's 8 August and I've just heard from Joan that AQSC's club certificate application has been approved by Richmond Borough Council.
   This news was followed closely by a survey request from the RYA asking if we had (a) applied, (b) been approved or turned down, and (c) how much our application cost. The RYA is still fighting a rearguard action to have sailing clubs put in a separate category to pubs, hotels and nightclubs from a charges standpoint.
   I wish them well but I think our Government is currently distracted by the adverse outcry this legislation is causing to be too bothered about the dissimilarity of actual applicants.  
   On the domestic front, welcome to all our new members. I trust you will enjoy your membership and take advantage of all Aquarius has to offer. The training programme is going well and hopefully, in the not so distant future, we will have our first graduate.
   I would like to remind you all about forthcoming events. There's a quiz night scheduled for 15 October which I'm told will be a little less taxing than the last 'Chinese' quiz.
   Firework night at Kempton Park will be on Saturday 5 November with supper back at the clubhouse. Tickets via Richard. The AQSC annual dinner will be held at the club on Saturday 19 November, details elsewhere in this newsletter. This is a not-to-be-missed event and early booking is highly recommended.
   I believe Diana has ordered a limited number of tickets for 'Aladdin' at Richmond Theatre in January.
   The AGM, prizegiving and end of season party will be held at the club on 3 December. That will be my last AGM as Commodore as I will be standing down to make way for someone with fresh ideas and enthusiasm.
   I'd like to take this opportunity to thank everybody on the club Management Committee for all their help advice and assistance over the last three years. It's been much appreciated. I'd especially like to thank Bodgitt & Son for all their work in the clubhouse over the last couple of years. That title covers several members, who between them have contributed an amazing amount of their time, knowledge and expertise. Gentlemen, it's been both an education and a pleasure to work with you.
   Meanwhile, on the water, sailing continues until 13 November so there are still plenty of opportunities to get afloat before the end of the season. Richard is keeping track of the series results but there's still time for you to rack up a few more points.
    As always more newsletter contributions would be appreciated. Just look at all the ramblings I turn out, you've got to be able to do better than those; Plus I'm running out of things to write about, so sharpen up your PC quill pens and lets have your 'take' on what's going on at the club, it's social programmes or anything else that takes your fancy.
   See you on the water!
Mike (The Commodore) Baker