Updated 25th September 2020.

Dear Members,

I am writing to you during these unprecedented times in the hope that you and your families are keeping well. The regular newsletters and social media posts both on Facebook and the Website should have been keeping you up to date with matters at Pin Mill Sailing Club, but I also take this opportunity to apologise if you have not had access to these forms of communication, I trust this letter will bring you up to speed on some key matters.

Please click on "Read more ..." below, to read important information affecting all members of the club, covering club opening, membership subscriptions for 2021, staffing and volunteers, club rule changes and AGM.

Mark Poppleton - Commodore

Club Opening

As you are aware, the club has been closed for regular activity and events since the start of lockdown. Now, I am delighted to be able to share with you that this is about to change. Thanks to the diligent work of our Covid19 Sub-Committee, plans have been implemented that will enable a cautious re-opening of the bar on Friday nights, 19:00 - 22:00 and the 1st Sunday in the month, 12:00 - 15:00.; CLICK HERE for the new protocols that have been put in place to keep everyone safe. If you are planning a visit, please familiarise yourself with them and stick to them.

The Club is now available for private bookings. Restrictions will obviously apply. However, ensuring we all have access and use of the Club is important.

Our Social Secretary is busy looking at options to provide some social functions in a Covid19 secure way. These will be limited and of course restricted, but this will be communicated on social media and through the Newsletter.

Our all important waterborne activities have almost run out of time. Just in case we get that Indian summer, don’t forget the Kayaks and canoes are available and a Ha’penny Cup relaxed race is being planned for early October.


Membership Subscriptions

As a result of the recent club closure and restricted access, the Committee are proposing a 5-month waiver of Membership Subscriptions at this year’s Annual General Meeting. This will mean that rather than renewing memberships on 1st January they will not be due until 1st June 2021. We hope you will agree that this is a prudent approach that does recompense members for their loss of facilities but also limits the financial burden for the Club, which is likely to face further challenges in the next few years and has lost significant revenues throughout the closure period.


Staffing and Volunteers

It is with great sadness that we have accepted Jo’s resignation from her position behind the bar. Jo was our only employee and has worked diligently for over 20 years providing catering for events, Sunday lunches and hospitality behind the bar and we will most certainly miss her, but recognise these changed times have provided the opportunity to re-think priorities so a well-earned retirement for Jo to enjoy other pursuits and her family life.

That leads me onto our future operations and staffing of the Club, including the bar, cleaning and all the many other jobs that arise throughout the year. For many years the Club Membership have had a band of dedicated volunteers, many on the Committee or working closely with the Committee to oversee both the running of the Club and activities that make it such a great facility. We still have a dedicated Committee but it is fair to say that Covid19 and general pressures of life and work are creating more and more challenges for this small group. The work is voluntary, often time-consuming and during full operations it is akin to running a small business; all in spare time that people just don’t have. Staffing expenditure has crept up over recent years as it has become harder and harder to find volunteers. The future restrictions on operations to keep us all Covid safe mean bar surpluses are likely to be low, if we have any at all and we feel increasing Membership Subs is not the best solution.

Future survival is likely to need us all to pull together. It’s your Club, and if together we can keep the expenditure down to a minimum, cover jobs and help with volunteers, utilise the skills we all have across the many rather than just a few we will not only weather this crisis well, but thrive.

Volunteering for bar shifts and as meet and greet (to help ensure Covid19 safe guidelines are adhered to) are the most pressing requirements presently, if we are to extend the trial opening beyond the first 4 weeks. Recognising that not everyone is able or ready to socialise, there are other volunteering activities such as sprucing up and cleaning the outside of the Club, painting, internal cleaning, refurb of the outside furniture, gardening, indeed whatever your skills, there will be a way you can help if you can spare a bit of time.

This includes anyone who would like to volunteer for a General Committee position now or in the future. I’m always happy to talk through what that entails and at the moment we are looking for a Property Secretary and a new Treasurer.

If you are able to help in any way then please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to let us know of how you are willing to assist.


Club Rules

The Committee have been busy considering the existing rules. CLICK HERE for a document that explains some proposals we would like your input into before we take them to the Annual General Meeting. I hope the introduction provides an explanation for the changes and we welcome your comment.



The date is fast approaching and due to the social distancing guidance currently in place, we are planning to hold the AGM via Zoom. It is understood that this will present some challenges however, we feel that this is a reasonable solution that will allow us to proceed with the meeting in-line with club rules. Relevant documentation will be posted on the club notice board in addition to being made available electronically on the club website.


Finally, on behalf of the whole Committee I just want to thank you all in advance for your ongoing support for our wonderful Sailing Club.


Yours sincerely,


Mark Poppleton


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