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Cadet Week at Blackwater Sailing Club

by Christine Brown 7 Aug 2018 15:39 BST 28 July - 2 August 2018
Blackwater Cadet Week 2018 © Kate Stewart

Blackwater Sailing Club have just held their annual cadet week. Over 140 cadets between the ages of 8 to 18 years old took part.

After all the formalities of registration, boat checks and kit inspections on Saturday everyone was fully charged and raring to start sailing on Saturday. However, the UK weather did its worst and with near gale force conditions prevailing only the very able cadets were able to go out for a blast. Others were kept busy with fun and games and theory. Monday dawned with a stiff breeze and there were 60 cadets on the river. There were lots of capsizes but as these were in a totally safe environment with many patrol boats in attendance even the newer cadets on the river thought this was fun and were very proud of what they achieved. Meanwhile the remainder of the cadets were having fun and games and tuition on the lake. Tuesday saw the cadets go down river where a typical figure of eight and sausage course was set for them and they completed three races back to back

Wednesday's conditions were perfect and everyone was able to take full advantage of the excellent weather that provided perfect sailing for the remainder of the week. For some cadets it was their first time on the river and they sailed into Maldon for an ice cream. There was something for everyone. . Each group has the benefit of their coach accomnpanying them in a patrol boat.

As if all this activity is not enough, each evening there is after dinner entertainment including roller skating, zorb balling on the lake, a disco and a talent show.

Thursday was wrap-up day with a fancy dress competition, mums and dads' sailing races and a race between all the winning cadets of the week for the Cock of the Cadets Cup which this year was one by Sophie Johnson.

During the week the cadets are also working towards their RYA qualifiications ranging from Level 1 up to Level 4. This helps greatly with progression to Instructor qualifications that some cadets strive for as young adults.

Blackwater Sailing Club is run by volunteers and is thus able to provide this fantastic week for its cadets due to the generosity of parents and many other helpers who give up their time to organise this annual event.. 110 volunteers were on site and around 250 lunches and dinners prepared each day.

For more details about events like this see

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