What is to be the Future of Irish Sailing?
Published on October 4th, 2019
While the world is very diverse, the issues pertaining to the sport can be quite similar. We can gain by learning from each other, as in this report by Tom MacSweeney from the Irish publication, Afloat:
My Podcast this week is an interview with the Chief Executive of Irish Sailing, Harry Hermon, in which he discusses a decline in yacht ownership, lifestyle changes which have reduced the time people can give to organised club sailing, the need for more government investment in facilities for boating around the coast and the challenges facing sailing, powerboating and windsurfing in Ireland over the next five years.
The national governing body for the sport has been holding a series of meetings this week to get the views of members, clubs, sailing centres and individual sailors to help frame the development of its next strategic plan – for the years 2020 to 2025. The last one was somewhat controversial.
I attended the first meeting, held in Cork. Others were at Cullaun Sailing Club; in Castlebar and Greystones Sailing Club. The final one is scheduled for October 8 at Howth Yacht Club.
The Cork meeting heard a lot of concern about a declining level of yacht ownership and lifestyle changes which have reduced the amount of time that can be given to participation in club activities, including racing. The trend of more motorboats and powerboats being sold was identified as a trend affecting sailing. The main positive for the sport is seen as being a sport for all, at all ages.
I discuss all these issues with Harry Hermon in the Podcast below.
Afloat is Ireland’s dedicated sailing, boating & maritime magazine. Published by boaters for boaters just metres from Dublin’s waterfront. www.afloat.ie