Sailing - the sport

The sport of sailing is enjoyed in many types of craft such as dinghies, windsurfers and keelboats. Notts County Sailing Club offers opportunities to sail all of these in a low-risk environment.

Sailing is a sport for all ages; we have youngsters from five years old to veterans in their mid-80s who love to sail. Our members come from all walks of life. We welcome and encourage families, beginners, keen racers, novice racers and anyone who just enjoys the opportunity of getting out on the water.

We support the Royal Yachting Association (RYA) – the national governing body for sailing, including: RYA Sailability and Get Onboard schemes which help disadvantaged people experience and learn sailing. The club owns “Access” boats and a hoist for use by disabled sailors. Floating pontoons and shore-side facilities are designed with their needs in mind.

There is a misconception that sailing is expensive, and you can spend large sums on the latest gear, but it certainly does not have to be. At a club like ours, where dinghy sailing and windsurfing are the focus, the costs are very reasonable. You can learn using club boats, and then decide whether to invest in your own craft. Many of our members can help you decide on your first purchase. We have a boat park and storage areas on site. Many families and individuals find that sailing becomes a significant part of their sporting and social life.

The most popular craft at the club are dinghies. These are usually designed to be sailed singlehanded or by two sailors. Most dinghies are made from durable plastic composites requiring little maintenance. Notts County Sailing Club welcomes all classes of dinghy which can be raced on a handicap basis. We also have several classes which race as a fleet on Sundays in summer. Dinghies are generally two to five metres in length. We also have facilities to launch keelboats such as the Flying 15. The size limit for dinghies at the club is 6.7 metres long. See the Racing Classes page for more information. A good way to enter the sport is to enrol on one of our training courses before purchasing a second-hand boat which can be found easily and purchased for very reasonable prices.

Windsurfers are another type of craft. This is an exciting and free-form of the sport. The club has specialised equipment to help members learn onshore and on the water. As with dinghies there are many different types of board and sail which cater for different skill levels and styles of sailing. 

Most people begin sailing by cruising and familiarising themselves with a boat. With more experience many graduate to racing as it is more challenging and a great way to improve your skills. There are cruising groups who sail on weekday afternoons and at weekends. Members are free to sail on the lake most days during Spring, Summer and early Autumn although safety cover is only provided at specific times of the week – usually when racing is scheduled. Cruising sailors are asked to avoid those who are racing by sailing between race times or using areas of the lake away from the racecourse.

Notts County Sailing Club is a friendly club run by volunteers. Our members are keen to pass on their enthusiasm for sailing by welcoming and helping new members. We won the National Club of the Year in 2018, demonstrating not only our quality, but also our commitment to the sport. 

The best way to find out more is come and see us (see Become a member).  Sunday lunchtime (c12.15) between March to December is an excellent time to visit the club. Ask for a flag officer (the people in charge!) or the Membership secretary.

You will need the visitor’s code for the entrance barrier so it is advisable to contact us before you set off so we can give you it. 

One of our HANSA Sailability dinghies
Handicap racing where many different classes sail together
Windsurfers enjoying the wind on the lake