Windermere Activities And Two Charities Coming Together.
April saw Blind Sailing head to Windermere and Ghyll Head Outdoor Education and Activities Centre, with The Outlook Trust and amazing charity supporting young visually impaired from 18 and under to get into sailing and other outdoor activities.
The weekend started with the Friday shift of boats and cars, cannot say thank you enough to Royal Windermere and Blackwell Sailing Trust from the loan of a few boats to make the weekend, again we always say this but it’s the clubs and volunteers that make it all happen and the weekends run so smoothly. The sun was out but so was the wind so this made for a short delivery trip, straight to Ghyll Head pontoons and then a short walk up the hill to the amazing accommodation and views, it is strange how these views and open space is felt by all, you are up high looking down on the water and once you have had it described to you as a VI you can feel it, a place that makes all calm and rest.
After a great Friday night get together and dinner at the pub with live band, we were all early to rise for breakfast in the house thanks to mum Jackie. But, as forecasted, no wind and very heavy rain, but we all had high hopes for the afternoon. So for the Outlook Trust it was water proofs on and up to the ropes for an adventure. And for us we were very lucky thanks to Ian Shirra to get a tour of the Steam Boat Museum and get hands on with some very old boats power and sail and learnt the history.
It was then back for a great lunch again thanks to Jackie, and out on the water for the afternoon. Some of our members were very keen to have a go at some of the skills needed for Power Boat Level 2, so thanks to Steve Hall and Jonny Cormack some of the team headed out in ribs, still using communication to achieve coming along side and man over board. All our sailors are keen to be part of sailing club duties and having the understanding can support them in helping out. The rest of the team went out in the RS Venture, as Blind sailing is keen to share this boat with all, as more competitions are opened up. It is a very different type of feel sailing sat next to each other especially for VI's as they rely on feeling the wind and the tilt of the boat. Sat in a seat on the leeward side helming can take some time, and it is true to say more communication is needed. But, all had a great time and look forward to learning more and getting the feel for sailing sitting down.
The sun was out which was great as Saturday evening both charities came tougher to talk about their day and the different adventures over a barbecue and soft archery. Sharing stories and providing encouragement is key, as many VI will tell you growing up with limited or no vision can be daunting but finding out what others have experienced from gadgets to jobs can be key.
We were also treated on Saturday night to a great live band thanks to Jeff and his volunteers and our very own Jonny Cormack. But it was young George that stole the show with his old time songs we could all sign along too, great evening chilling together.
Sunday the breeze filled in just as we rigged, 10-12 knots coming down the lake. Today was about ticking a second box more spinnaker work, setting and gybing. It was also great to see our young volunteers leading this out on the water giving all confidence and great communication, all skills I know they value as they apply for jobs and uni, and are so valued by our members for their learning. A long more then a short stop for lunch and it was time to sail the boats back, it was safe to say the wind new we were heading home as half way along the lake it started to turn off, but there was just enough to get the boats back home and packed away.
A great weekend and again thanks to all, Windermere and Ghyll Head is a place we all relax, it is even said Lucy does not set an alarm.
Thank you to all for making this weekend happen, especially Sports England Together Fund for enabling us to be togheter on the water.