What is Sailability?

A sailing club aimed at providing sailing opportunities to people with disabilities. Registered charity 1110365.

Where do you meet?

Oulton Broad, the Waveney and Oulton Broad Yacht Club have a clubhouse there and generously allow us the use of their facilities.

When do you meet?

Most Tuesday afternoons between April and October.

Do you have to "hang about" to get a chance to sail?

You must book in on arrival and we will get you sailing as soon as possible. If you contact the booking secretary before the day, a more specific time can be arranged.

Do you have race meetings?

There is racing on Tuesday afternoons at about 4 o'clock, with the longer-term aim to perhaps compete in the Paralympics. Also we participate in Oulton Week Regatta in August.
Nobody is compelled to do this; general sailing will always be available.

Are there other clubs in the U.K?

Yes, Sailability is associated with the RYA (Royal Yachting Association) and the Access Dinghy Association. Ipswich is the nearest other club.

How many members do you currently have?

About 100 sailing members and approximately 50 volunteer members.

Is membership restricted?

There are no restrictions for adults, children have to be aged 9 or over. Access Dinghies are designed to allow any person with the use of one hand, and can sit in the boat, to be able to sail. One Access dinghy has electronic controls which can be operated by joy stick, tongue or suck & blow, and we also have facilities for impaired hearing and sight. Two initial trial sails allow us to assess the needs of each individual.  For those not wishing to learn to sail themselves but who would like to experience the thrill of sailing then they can be taken for a sail in one of our Squibs.

Our catchment area is North Suffolk and South Norfolk.

How can individuals who are unable to walk get into the dinghies?

Three special hoists are available. Mobility and wheel chairs are allowed on the jetty.

Is tuition provided?

Professional tuition is provided by RYA accredited instructors.

Does this restrict the level of one to one tuition?

No, the more able bodied and volunteer helpers are formally trained to take up Assistant Instructors roles and beyond.

What about Safety?

This is always a high priority. Two safety boats with trained volunteers are always on hand.

How many boats does the club have?

Twelve special dinghies (Access Class), designed to be very stable and not tip over, and two larger boats (Squibs).

Do members have to supply their own sailing equipment?

No - life jackets and waterproofs are provided although Members should be appropriately dressed for the weather, even in the Summer, as it is usually colder on the water.

Do you have to join the club to see if you like it?

No - taster sessions can be arranged. Contact the Booking Secretary. It will cost you nothing to try, newcomers are welcome.

Is any experience required?

No - all tuition is provided.

What is the cost of membership?

This year it is £60, £25 for non-sailing members (helpers). This includes the use of all equipment, tuition, and club insurance. Membership fees will always be kept to a minimum.

How was Sailability established at Oulton Broad?

In 2004 local Lowestoft, Beccles, Gorleston and Yarmouth Rotary Clubs were seeking a special project to celebrate the Centenary of the formation of Rotary International, and raised the initial funds to get the Club started.

Is it still run by the Rotary Organisation?

No it is now an independent charity, although many local Rotary members and Clubs remain closely involved.

How is it funded?

Through the help of charitable trusts, Companies, Rotary Clubs around East Anglia, and individuals.

Are funds still needed?

Very definitely yes. General funds are very important as the cost of maintenance, instructors, insurance, boat tolls, rent, etc have to be met annually if membership costs are to be kept low. This is why we ask our supporters to make donations to the club as flexible as possible rather than specify how the funds are used. Gift Aid is always welcome.

Are there any paid officers?

No - we are all volunteers.

How can I help?

Volunteers are always required for hands-on and clerical help.

Making the boats ready and securing them at the end of sailing currently falls to a few people and extra help is always welcome. Competent sailors who wish to train to become instructors are also required. The Group only meets on a Tuesday, (plus any other days that come up for racing) and any one able to give a few hours on a rota basis would be welcome. It does not have to be every week.

Anybody wanting to organise fund raising initiatives such as sponsored running or cycling events would be appreciated.

Who do I contact for further information?

Our General Enquiries

Come along and join us....