Cruising Notes from Ian Gartside (Cruising Secretary)

The time was when offshore boats were mostly berthed along the River Bank on self-built jetties adjacent to the Club House which enabled their cruising owners to meet together regularly to swap yarns about epic voyages to Peel Island, Ramsey and maybe Conway. Many boats were wooden and some even had engines which were nearly reliable. Races over the Bay and to the Isle of Man started from Fleetwood and were extremely popular. It was not unusual for fifteen or twenty vessels to be seen milling around in the Estuary waiting for the start gun to signal a mad dash to Wyre light and the open sea. Winter saw the Offshore Yachts racing, dinghy-like, in front of the Club House which encouraged members and their families to turn up to watch the spectacle. Summer Sundays were often packed to the door. 

Tuesday nights at the club saw a brisk trade over the bar as mostly male members convened to discuss their boats, the racing and adventures as well as the general topics of the day. Many a Saturday night was spent bopping to records with the floor visibly vibrating above those who ventured downstairs to the toilets - A cruising sailor’s life at the Club was good. But sadly that was all in the era “BM” (before marinas).


Nowadays our members tend to seek more salubrious berths and locations for their pride and joy and, as a consequence, getting together to talk cruising, plan trips and make friends is not so easy and the club house is not the popular social venue for cruisers that it was, which is a shame.

Today we have members who keep their boats at Marinas all along the West Coats and Scotland and more than a few are berthed abroad so the visibility and impact of cruising members in the club is not always as great as maybe it should.


Nevertheless we represent a major part of the membership and contribute greatly to the financial wellbeing and activities within the club. The trouble is that I, as Cruising Secretary, find the task of bringing us together and speaking up on your behalf a daunting one mainly because I am mostly unaware of who you are and what you are doing. What I need is for you to get in touch and tell me what you are up to, what you think the club should be doing and how best we can help you with your cruising ambitions. I would particularly like you to send me anything interesting that you are doing or planning such as passage information, a good story and particularly photographs which we can put on the website and help to make our presence felt.

Contact me through my info in the handbook, by email at or using the form at the bottom of this page.



The chandlers at Garstang gives 10% for members. Take your membership card and they will sort you out.

All members are entitled to six free nights in the Marina (no more than three consecutively) but you must book them in advance via Jonathan Clarke.

 If anyone has any other information which might be useful to members. Let me know)


For sale

I have for sale a decent 2.2 outboard and a pristine Walker Log complete with original box and accessories. It even has its oil can – Arthur Negus would be turning in his grave.

Phone Ian Gartside (number in the handbook)

Hoping to make this a feature for members who have stuff for sale

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