Hayling Island Sailing Club (HISC) have won the coveted Yachts and Yachting club of the year award for 2014.
The prestigious accolade, which will be presented at the London Boat Show next Thursday is the ‘icing on the cake’ of a memorable year for the Chichester Harbour based outfit.
That is the view of HISC Commodore Greg Lamb following an action-packed 12 months on the south coast.
Consistently good weather, record levels of sailing activity as well as the highest ever membership levels made for a hugely successful year for the club.
The undoubted highlight was the hosting of the Moth National and World Championships – the most high-profile event HISC has ever organised, and a record turnout for the class.
The two years of meticulous planning ensured an extremely well run event both on and off the water.
And the huge level of media interest, including The News’ continued coverage that the event secured was testament to its worldwide success.
Commenting on the award, Commodore Lamb said: ‘This is a fantastic and well-deserved achievement for everyone involved with Hayling Island Sailing Club.
‘From the committee members who give their valuable time and experience to assist in the running of the club, to the dedicated and hard-working team of permanent staff.
‘And of course to the enthusiastic members who get such enjoyment from the varied racing schedule and many social events held at the club.
‘It was a memorable year for all sorts of reasons and to win the Yachts and Yachting club of the year award is the icing on the cake for us.’
HISC also hosted a number of other successful events in the past 12 months including the RS200 and 420 National Championships, The RS Classes Southern Championships, with more than 200 boats, as well as a busy programme of open and grand prix events for a wide selection of dinghy classes.
All this on top of the normal six-series Open Pursuit races, Saturday and Sunday club racing series, Family Fun Week, the largest ever Youth Race Week and a busy schedule of training and youth events throughout the year.
Understandably then, 62-year-old Lamb who has been involved with the club for more than 30 years is looking forward to a calmer period on the waters, with 2015 promising to be less hectic, though no less rewarding.
He added: ‘This year promises to be quieter – last year was a bit full-on!
‘Partly by design and partly by coincidence we have got a relatively relaxed year coming up in terms of the number of championship events that we run.
‘We do however have a couple of national championships and a large RYA selector event running at the end of August for the Youth World Championships.
‘We’ll have 100-plus boats for that.’
The ongoing activities at the club such as the popular Get Racing Club will ensure that HISC remains at the forefront of sailing on the south coast.
Lamb said: ‘The Get Racing Club; an initiative set up by Senior Trustee Melvyn Cooper, saw a large number of newcomers get on the water.
‘Here, inexperienced sailors can learn key racing techniques, build confidence and gain valuable racing skills in a relaxed and informal format from experienced racing mentors.
‘And now a lot of people who had previously never considered racing are now doing it on a regular basis.’