19 June 2019

Thanks to John Derbyshire, ESC General Committee member and former RYA Director of Racing, for forwarding the following message recently received from the office of RYA Chief Executive Sarah Treseder: 

Sarah Treseder has received a letter from The Princess Royal thanking her for inviting her to visit Emsworth Sailing Club on the occasion of its Centenary.  She appreciated the opportunity to watch the sailing and to see so many young people thoroughly enjoying themselves on the water.  The Princess Royal welcomed the chance to meet all the guests afterwards.

She also passed on her particular thanks for the lovely book Emsworth Sailing Club – A Centenary History as well as the delicious pies, which the party enjoyed on the trip back to London.

More photos

Commodore's report of HRH The Princess Royal's visit, 2 May 2019

The Club was honoured by the extremely successful 3-hour visit of Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal last Thursday, 2nd May. It was a bright day with light north-west winds and excellent conditions for photography.

About 160 guests, including Club members and dignitaries, were able to see and meet HRH as she talked to everybody present, both on and off the water.

HRH was greeted outside the Club by HM Lord-Lieutenant of Hampshire, Mr Nigel Atkinson. In the North Room HRH then met the dignitaries:

Cllr Peter Wade (Mayor of Havant) and his wife;
Cllr Elaine Still (Chair, Hampshire County Council);
Mr Alan Mak (MP for Havant);
Ms Sarah Treseder (RYA Chief Executive).

As commodore, I then had the honour of being presented to HRH, together with John Derbyshire, General Committee Member and former Director of Racing at the RYA.

The Princess Royal went on into the Snug Bar to meet the Flag officers, Centenary Committee Chairman Chris Clode, RYA principal and Director of Training Matt Wright, and the Club Trustees. She saw the record of her great uncle Lord Louis Mountbatten as a former Commodore and Admiral of the Club, together with his signed photo. In the wet bar she met Pippa, Lady Blake and Tom Hulton to talk about the Blake Young Sailors’ Fund and meet the Junior Captains, Emily Jones and Henry Chandler.

HRH then went out on the water aboard Escort with the Lord-Lieutenant, Sarah Treseder, Tim Keeping (driving), John Derbyshire and me, plus her PPO and PPS, and was treated to an excellent demonstration from 16 young sailors in Optimists, Teras, Fevas and RS 200s – this included Jess Lavery swapping to an Oppie for an impromptu race. HRH took in her stride fending off the boom from an over enthusiastic close pass by one boat!

Back to the Club via the Upper Deck, HRH met support boats drivers, instructors and Ollie and Eloise. Down in the dining room, I then welcomed HRH to the Club. The Princess Royal made an excellent and thought-provoking speech in reply, without using notes, before unveiling the plaque in the dining room commemorating the visit. I presented HRH with a copy of our Club Centenary book.

Impressively, HRH then met and talked to everyone present and clearly enjoyed the visit.

Just before she left, The Princess Royal signed the Visitors Book and Ellie-Mai Clift presented her with a posy. We also made sure HRH and her team had a supply of Ollie’s excellent homemade pies for her trip back!

You can see photos of the visit and press reports on the website. 

The Club was and is looking in great condition thanks to the many volunteers getting it ready in the days leading up to the visit. Long may it look as good!

In fact, the visit could not have gone as smoothly as it did without the immense amount of effort from all the volunteers that make our Club so effective, from the working parties, getting Escort looking so good and also the Club committees. I would especially like to thank the core committee that put the visit together with me – the Flag Officers with Chris Clode and John Derbyshire, with Gill Pegram and Jeremy Greaves on PR. They all put long hours into preparing the programme and in liaising with the very helpful Lord Lieutenants Office and the Palace.

There were some amusing incidents – the extremely enthusiastic police dog checking everything in the morning, including the box in the office containing the bridge cards and paraphernalia. The policeman bolt-cropped the lock when we couldn’t find the code!

Michael Geary


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