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Rudyard Lake Sailing Club in Staffordshire has been shortlisted for a prestigious national award following a hugely successful year and a doubling of its membership.

The volunteer-run club is one of 12 finalists from across the UK selected for the RYA and Sailing Today with Yachts & Yachting Club of the Year Award, supported by Gallagher. A public vote will help to decide the overall winner and members are hoping local people will support the club in its bid to claim the title and bring the trophy home. Rudyard Lake SC is growing fast thanks to its modern clubhouse and wide range of activities, including RYA sailing and powerboat courses, informal social sessions and training, competitive dinghy racing, junior and women’s clubs, Stand Up Paddleboarding, and model yachting.

The club currently has the largest membership in its history with 473 members, and the last year alone saw a 20% increase. This record figure has been supported by the club diversifying its activities. It is also now home to the Galley Café, which is open to the public six days a week and encourages new people to find out about the club and get on the water.

Janey Hill, Commodore of Rudyard Lake Sailing Club, said:

“It’s wonderful that we’re a finalist and I’m so proud of the club and to be nominated for this award. We are a volunteer-run club and winning Club of the Year would be a fantastic recognition for all their hard work." “As well as boating courses and activities, we’ve embraced paddleboarders and have a really vibrant radio-controlled model yachting group. We also have the Galley Café in the clubhouse, with a balcony overlooking the water and a real wow factor. I think what makes us special is that we’re just really welcoming and friendly and inclusive for all ages, so we are hoping people will vote for us!

The club is an RYA Recognised Training Centre and also RYA On-Board and British Youth Sailing accredited for its outstanding provision for children and young people. Recent investment has included a new pontoon, the purchase of six club paddleboards, and new decking for the clubhouse. Among the club’s members is Tokyo Olympic Games silver medallist John Gimson who grew up sailing at Rudyard Lake SC and revisits to inspire the next generation when he is at home.

The annual RYA and Sailing Today with Yachts & Yachting awards recognize the achievements of venues and their volunteers and the dedication that goes into running a successful club. Rudyard Lake SC is competing for the title against a whole range of premier clubs, including finalists from Northern Ireland, The Lake District, London, and the south coast. Congratulating the finalists, Rob Clark, RYA Director of Sport Development, said:

“It’s been truly inspiring to hear the many incredible and diverse stories across the RYA club network.”

Rob Peake, the group editor of Sailing Today with Yachts & Yachting, added:

“The shortlisted clubs were selected by the RYA Awards Panel who judged them on how well they promote the sport, encourage people onto the water and make their activities varied and accessible to their community. With voting now open, it’s over to the public to determine the overall winner.”

Voting will close at midnight on 22 January 2023 and the winner will be announced at the RYA Dinghy & Watersports Show at Farnborough International Exhibition Centre on Saturday, 25 February 2023.

Find out more about Rudyard Lake Sailing Club at and support the club by voting at the RYA Club of the Year Awards.

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