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Week 1 in the Bartley S.C. Lockdown - Things to do when there is no sailing #1

Every day is a school day so they say. Rather than wallow in self pity as I can't do the sport I love just now, I decided that it was finally time to up-skill myself. 

Some of you may be in the generation that remember Mr Ben on childrens TV; an adventurer who would change outfits he had seen in a shopkeeper's window ready to take on whatever the episode threw at him. It had a famous line when Mr Ben had finished his quest at the end of the show that went 'and as if by magic the shopkeeper appeared' . This was the cue that the adventure was over, Mr Ben changed back into his normal clothes and went on his way.

I am reminded of this quote as every time I tie a bowline on my boat because 'as if by magic Colin Staite appears' reminding me that a splice is twice as nice as a knot and much stronger. My staple response has been 'yes, but I have never had a rope break at the knot' to basically hide the fact that I have no clue how to splice a modern rope!

So when I was sent home from work on Tuesday for the foreseeable future I immediately invested in some fids off Amazon that arrived soon after. I unwrapped them and discovered 'everyday is a school day #2' as the instructions are in French! Not to worry - I found a Londoner and an American who could help me out on Youtube and off I went.

Rope without a core - no problem - everything in the house of this construct now has a spliced loop in it. 

Rope with a core - flippin' heck - who thought that was a good idea? After 1/2 hr with skin worn thin on both hands I finally managed one rather pathetic loop and hundreds of new expletives! I think I will leave it a few days before I try to master that one...

I hope you are all well, doing whatever you are managing to do, whilst at home and are following the government guidance for the benefit of all. Keep safe and well, and I will keep sending out a blog from time to time to remind us all that there is a great stretch of water waiting for us all at the end of this.

Three of my efforts below - marks out of 10?

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Bartley S.C. All Activity Suspended Until Further Notice Due to Covid-19 Guidance

 Hopefully you will be aware of the Coronavirus guidance provided by the government on 16th March regarding social distancing measures, preventing all unnecessary travel, avoiding pubs, clubs, theatres and other social venues, and working from home where possible. With the additional guidance for a potential 12 week isolation for groups more vulnerable to the virus starting this weekend.

We have also been reviewing the RYA stance on Covid-19 and have noted that they have cancelled all training activity and events until the end of April at a minimum.

The committee have therefore decided to suspend all club activity and close the facility until further notice. This is not a decision that we have taken lightly, however there is overwhelming evidence that this is the correct course of action at the current time.

We hope that we can rely on your support during this time and will keep members updated as and when we have any further information.

All duty crews will be reallocated to a later duty as the closure date extends past the duty date. Please keep your duty date in your diary until the date has passed though so we can start up efficiently when the time comes.

All of our partners have been informed of the situation and we will be in touch with class associations for Supernova and Merlins to discuss how they wish to proceed with the Open meetings scheduled for April (cancel or postpone).

This has been a difficult decision and it is frustrating for all of us, but safety and well-being come first so we hope you all stay safe, fit and well during this time, and lets hope it doesn't go on too long.

Best regards

BSC Committee

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Great Day of Topper Training at Bartley

It was a little cold and a little damp to start with but the Topper tribe were dressed and ready for it. After a briefing the sailors took to the water for some gybe and tacking practice followed by close quarters circuits to practice boat handling.

After lunch it was short races to get some much needed starting practice with a final debrief before setting off home.

Thanks to the coaches and all who travelled to the event (and Dave for launching and recovering all the power boats we needed!)

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26 Boats on the water for the End of Series Regatta, plus a great working party!

Thanks to all who supported the end of series regatta today and a huge THANK YOU to the steady stream of helpers with spades and wheelbarrows that shifted gravel to the wettest parts of the dinghy park in record time! Great work everyone.

 The regatta was held in a perfect force 3 to 4 from SSW making it quite tactical. The Topper of Cecily followed by the radials of Josh and Harrison showed the way around the first few laps of race one, but Mike Gibson's new orange machine crept up and tango'd everyone to take the win from Chris Bownes and Simon Hardiman.

Race 2 saw a few retirements and a new face as Megan arrived fresh from a Netball match to set off in her favourite conditions. With a slight change in course the Laser 4.7 set off flat and fast and that was the last we saw of it as Megan disappeared into the distance taking race 2 by over a minute. Mike Gibson overhauled Simon Hardiman on the final reach with Josh in 4th in his radial.

The final scores for the Regatta and series were as follows:

Regatta:

1st Mike Gibson

2nd Simon Hardiman

3rd Chris Bownes

1st Junior Josh Oates

Series Handicap 1 - The Garry'O' rose bowl: Mike Gibson

Junior Plaque: Harrison Allen

Series Pursuit - The Asterix Cup: Ian Capener

Series Handicap 2 - The Vic Lewis Cup: Ian Capener

Sunday - The Langdale Cup: Simon Hardiman

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Thou Protest too little...

Thanks to all who attended the rules evening. Steve gave an informative talk on the process of raising a protest and how it gets heard with emphasis on the facts of the situation and how to establish them during a hearing.

Whilst we don't want any flouting of the rules we hope the members that attended now feel more familiar with the process and might be a bit more confident shouting 'protest!' when they have been infringed. 

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Covid-19 Coronavirus

A few members have asked about the affect the recent Coronavirus has on Bartley S.C. The clubs stance is, and will remain aligned with Government guidance. 

Currently we expect members to follow government guidelines on personal hygiene and obviously ensure that you self isolate and call 111 if you are displaying symptoms. These guidelines are under constant review and update so we ask that you familiarise yourself with the latest information through government broadcasts. 

There is currently no requirement for the club to limit its operations and it remains fully open and operational at the present time. If we receive guidance that requires a change to this status we will communicate to members as soon as we receive it.

In the meantime keep safe and well and enjoy your watersports at Bartley.


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Working Party This Saturday 9.30 to 11.30 - bring a spade and wheelbarrow (Followed by End of Series Regatta @ 12.30)

Saturday is the end of winter series regatta (which means spring must be just around the corner!). In the morning we will be holding a working party and we need as many people as possible with wheelbarrows and spades to distribute gravel from 5 large gravel bags onto the wettest parts of the dinghy park. Many hands make light work so the more the merrier - look forward to seeing you on Saturday bright and early. 

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Bartley Boys 2nd at Blithfield Blast

Well done to Sam Knight and Chris Bownes for their 2nd place at the Blithfield Blast on  Sunday in the RS400. Full report on Yachts and Yachting: www/yachtsandyachting.com/news/227131/Blithfield-Blast?source=email 

Apparently the first 2 races were great but rudder failure in the 3rd resulted in a handbrake turn that lost them the opportunity of the overall win - great result though, and anyone with a spare 400 rudder get in touch!

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Rules Fun Evening for Members on 11th March @7.30 p.m. in the Club House

​Steve Watson will return on 11th March to provide a follow on from the rules evening last year. This time the focus will move from explaining the rules to what to do about it when there has been an infringement. It is one thing to get upset about someone on Port forcing you to tack but it is another thing to know how to raise a protest to get something done about it. This evening aims to demystify the process in a fun and entertaining way. The bar will be open from 7 pm and we hope you can join us.

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Storm Jorge - Bring it On!

If you were there it was epic, if you weren't then come along tomorrow for a more gentle sail... 

​Photos from Chris Oates https://1drv.ms/u/s!AVE2NmcUZCj7rzZEKbxoUGx8MDFL?e=Q1jSFc if you want to see all the fun.

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2 Places left on the Topper Open Training Sunday 15th March

There are still a couple of places left for the International Topper Class Association (ITCA) open training on Sunday 15th March at Bartley. Entry is via the ITCA website under the 'Events' section. The day is run by Topper Coaching Staff and includes fitness, theory, and practice on the water followed by a debrief at the end of the day. There is one club Topper available for use if anyone wishes to use it for the day just let me know on . Entrants will need to be able to sail a triangle course confidently (i.e. no absolute beginners). There are currently 14 entrants and it would be great to get to the full 16 so if you know someone who has a Topper encourage them to come along.

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Josh is Victorious as the Bartley Bear shows its Teeth to Storm Dennis

What a weekend! We hope all our membership survived without too much disruption and were saved from any floods or falling debris. As Steve's post mentioned Saturday was just too windy but Sunday was sailable - just!

5 mad fools set off for the Bartley Bear sprints; 2 laser 4.7s of Josh and Harrison, 2 Laser Radials of Ollie and Simon, and Sean going for full on, fully batterned Supernova.

After launching the squalls soon started to come in with torrential rain and spray blowing off the wave crests. The famous five lined up on the start and, after a slog up the first beat, let the sail out onto the reach providing swift acceleration to terminal velocity to the gybe mark really testing our boat handling skills! And so the day progressed; quick 12 minute races of full concentration, full speed, and full on wipe-outs, mixed with some great match racing and excellent starts.

At the end it was anyone's guess who had won but in the conditions it was clear that the 4.7s were holding their own on handicap. With Josh and Harrison tied on points the results went to countback with Josh taking the win. 

You may think we were a bit bonkers, but we were not the only ones... looking up the reservoir there was a steady stream of wetsuited warriors in high-vis orange tabards propelling their stand-up paddle boards around the perimeter in their winter series race. It was just fantastic to see so many people on the water showing their passion for water-sports whatever the  met office could throw at us.

As the worn out participants returned to shore they were welcomed by the freshly painted clubhouse and warm food and drink from Tilly's - a great end to an epic day. 

Thanks to all who organised and helped on rescue - we were working hard and it was cold - you must have been frozen!

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Sailing today

Good morning from Steve Ward

Im at the club at present and its currently blowing over 30 knots . The water is currently closed. The wind forecast is meant to increase so this is sadly likely to be the case all day.

All bots in the boat park are currently ok.

Im also the ood today.


Regards


Steve

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Andrew Simpson Centre Birmingham Opening at Bartley S.C.

The Committee are very excited to announce that the Andrew Simpson Foundation have selected Bartley S.C. as their Birmingham base to offer a wide range of RYA courses and training opportunities. We encourage our members to have a look at our new partner's website at https://aswc.co.uk/our-centres/birmingham/ to see the fantastic opportunities for beginners right through to advanced training and coaching for the seasoned sailor. We look forward to working with the Andrew Simpson Centre and everything that they have to offer. 

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The Final Bartley Bear of the Season Sunday 16th Feb

Fingers crossed, touch wood etc.. we will get the final Bartley Bear of the season sailed this Sunday. Hopefully the wind will have dropped a bit during the week and we can get this final event under way. Usual drill - All Laser rigs welcome or any single handers with similar PY. 10.30 rigged and ready. Free to members £5 for visitors. Go-pro or similar welcome.

12 short races designed to practice starts and skills on the first beat. 

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High Winds - Please ensure your boat is tied down!

The forecast this weekend is currently showing gusts over 50 knots for Sunday. If you sail on Saturday please ensure that your boat is securely tied down before you leave to prevent any damage to your boat, or neighboring boats should the forecast wind materialise. Please also do a quick check of any boats around yours as their owners may not be regular sailors and tie down ropes do rot over time.

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Reservoir Blogs

​Thanks to all who attended the informative talk last night about the reservoir and its various feeds. We learnt about the construction and increasing maintenance of the water collection and transfer systems running between the Elan valley and Bartley. We found that the adjacent Frankley reservoir has significant interactions with Bartley reservoir and from the air the full extent of the operation can be seen. Furthermore we learnt about the 'resilience' plans that are currently being completed to enable water levels at Elan to be dropped for maintenance whilst the river severn is regulated by an alternative dam to provide 50 days water coverage whilst maintenance takes place. We also found that Trimpley reservoir is one of our feeders too (but only when times are tough)! At the end of the talk a few short film clips were shown from youtube about the reservoir and the current activity so search these up if you have further interest.

The turnout was the biggest seen in recent years so thanks to all who supported and to Nick Eaves for organising the evening with Severn Trent. If there are other specific interest talks that you would like to see at Bartley let me know on and we will try our best to get things organised.

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Reminder - Talk by Severn Trent on Bartley Reservoir at 7.30 pm this Wednesday 22nd January

​Ever wondered how it all works and what Severn Trent has been up to recently in and around our reservoir? Then please come along to this informative talk on Wednesday evening in the clubhouse.

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Useful Resources for Getting to Know the Rules of Racing

Imagine driving to a 'give way' sign and acting as if it was your right of way. You continue without stopping causing cars to swerve and collide with either you or other objects as they take avoiding action. Carnage follows and a lot of insurance claims. You then drive through every red light getting to your destination quicker than you would have done if you had followed the highway code but with vehicles dispersing in your wake! You may or may not get caught by the police or a dashcam and you most certainly will have caused a bit of road rage.

In sailing there is a highway code called the 'Racing Rules of Sailing' which can be downloaded from the world sailing website. But in sailing there is no driving test and no police so the sport relies on sailors getting to know the rules and sailing within them. It also relies on sailors doing their penalty turns when they have infringed. A sailor that hits every mark, punches their way through the fleet when they have no rights is like the driver paying no attention to the give way signs or running the red light - and rage from other sailors is inevitable! Such a sailor will get to the finish quicker but not fairly or legally. With no police it is up to those around to police the situation, giving clear signals of intent and protesting those who do not take heed. 

A few weeks ago the turn out was fantastic with over 30 boats on the start line. With a short first beat 30 boats reached the windward mark all at the same time and a few of them shot through the 'give way' sign. There was a lot of hailing and bumping but no penalty turns or protests. There was some good discussion in the bar afterwards and it was raised at the sailing committee meeting to perhaps move to fleet racing or separate starts, however, after some discussion it was decided that the racing had been great and that the cause was rules adherence rather than quantity of boats. Last year the club ran a racing rules evening and we are looking into a follow-on so all are better educated on the rules of the race. In the mean time there are a few good resources out there for learning and testing your knowledge of the rules of sailing so that you don't get caught out and can sail with confidence in any situation. 

To start you off here are a few links to cut and paste into your browser on mark rounding - see how many scenarios you get right (I would like to say I got 100% but I did get one wrong!):

https://sailzing.com/rule-18-mark-room/

https://sailzing.com/rule-18-mark-room2/

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High winds

Hi all

Sorry I do not have everybodys contact details. I popped to the club today and a few boats have been blown over. These include the finn in row b  a lark in row f and a yellow moth.

It was far too windy today to pick them back up but the owners may wish to do so later in the week.

Steve 

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