2018 Nationals - change of venue

2018 Nationals – event relocation from Looe SC to Penzance SC.

Looe is a popular championship venue: it is a lovely town and the sailing is wonderful.  It is therefore with regret that a decision has been taken to move the 2018 National Championships.  

I’d like to reassure you that the committee has not taken this decision lightly.  There were many factors to weigh up including an awareness that some competitors may already have booked accommodation at Looe.  However, it is hoped that by taking the decision to transfer the event relatively early deposits will not be lost.

The 2018 Nationals will now be held at Penzance SC over the same week of 21-27 July 2018.  As many of you will recall Penzance hosted an excellent Nationals in 2012.

The background to this decision is as follows:

The Committee had been trying to engage with Looe since the start of 2017 but it was only very recently we managed to start discussions on costs and format.  It transpired Looe had a set formula for the event format and a minimum charge for running championships which no doubt works well as long as a class can guarantee Looe’s specified minimum number of boats.

We knew from feedback we received about next year’s Nationals that cost and having control of the event to suit our needs both on and off the water was really important to us all.  We also recognised that the World Championships in Carnac will have an impact on attendance at the 2018 Nationals. 

The committee believed the association was unlikely to meet Looe’s entry requirements in order that the cost per boat would be at an acceptable level.  We could have set the entry fee per boat on the assumption that we would achieve Looe’s minimum number of boats but any shortfall of numbers would have exposed the association to the very real risk of covering significant losses - likely to be in four figures. The Committee agreed this was a risk it was not prepared to take.

As an aside, the association is now consciously looking five years ahead in identifying suitable venues for the Nationals and is engaging early.  We were in fact further ahead with our discussions with clubs for the 2019 and 2020 events than we were with Looe just a few weeks ago.  The other clubs we are in discussions with are very much in line with the association’s views and requirements on budgeting and have quoted acceptable sailing only ‘per boat’ fees giving us the flexibility to structure our own social programme.  We believe, therefore, that future Nationals will not suffer the same problems we have faced in regard to the 2018 event.

Apologies for this change of plans and, in particular, to those who of you who may need to unwind accommodation arrangements.  

Chris Turner

UKFA Chairman

27 October 2017

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