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The oldest video footage of Enterprise sailing dinghies

by Magnus Smith 3 Mar 12:00 GMT
Carnage at a manned A mark during the 1978 West Lancs 24hr Race © WLYC

Our video archive is fully searchable, and linked to all the clubs and classes in our database. It is updated weekly with the latest videos of sailing, but here we delve into the past, and round-up everything that shows sailing in Enterprise dinghies.

The first old video we know of, which features an Ent, is Sailing in Emsworth during the 1950s; it's a fascinating look at all the different craft in Chichester Harbour at that time. You'll need to skip to about 40m20s in, if all you want to see is blue sails (which end at 41m20s).

David Foulkes has got a brilliant crop of videos from two sailing clubs, and here's his first: Pilkington SC open meeting 1962.

We are not sure of the location for the National Championships 1962 so let us know!

Mixed in with the Merlin Rockets and National 12s here, we have the 1962 Tideway Race at Putney, London run by Ranelagh SC. 332 entrants, apparently!

Plus the same the next year: 1963 Tideway Race at Putney. It's great that British Pathé have so much footage still available to watch for free.

From Wales now, we have the Menai Straits Regatta 1963 filmed by someone who mostly looked at the Enterprise fleet.

The next video is from sometime in the 1960s and shows a family day out, from Towing with a Mini, to sailing on a lake. The boat is E175; can you identify the couple or the location? One clue might be that this comes from "the Hayden collection".

Now we have a crop from David Foulkes again, starting with Leigh SC mixed dinghy racing from the mid 1960s (mostly showing Enterprises).

Around the same time frame is Leigh SC fleet racing.

Then, with a more accurate date, it's Northern Championships 1965 at Morecambe & Heysham YC.

This final video from 1976-77 is an hour long, but does show Enterprises occasionally. It consists of mixed club racing and some open meetings at Burnham Overy Staithe in North Norfolk (UK). You have to watch at as we cannot embed the video here. If you are in a rush, there are several sections you can skip:

  • swimming - 11m00s to 14m23s
  • National 12 open meeting - 21m27s to 23m20s
  • prizegiving - 29m09s to 30m35s
  • International OK open meeting - 21m27s to 23m20s
  • vicar - 41m45s to 44m58s
  • rowing - 50m50s to the end

What of the rest?

Do you know the location of any Enterprise videos that show racing fleets from the 1950s to the 80s? We would love to share these with other sailors. You can submit video links to us for immediate review.

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