Ian Firth - RYA Lifetime Commitment Award

We are delighted to announce the RYA have conferred a Lifetime Commitment Award on Ian Firth a long time member of the club from its time on the river to the present day. Ian will be invited to London where hopefully Princess Anne will be there to award the honour. Congratulations.

As you can see below Ian has and still contributes to many aspects of the club.

This is the Citation sent to RYA:

Ian Firth has and still contributes to the sport of sailing in many ways over the last 50 years.  The majority of his activity has been at Notts County Sailing Club, however he has also sat on club and RYA Regional committees over the years.

The Firth family began sailing and joined the club at Stoke Bardolf on the River Trent. He was about 12 at the time and learned to sail by crewing and the example of others.

Saturday Club is perhaps one of his key innovations at the club, he founded the group with Julie Hall many years ago. It runs from May to September to encourage young novice sailors and their families into sailing in a safe and fun environment.  The club is not a child minding service and parents have to help out in any way they can, so involving the whole family, often the parents see how much fun the children are having and train up to be Powerboat Drivers or take a Dinghy course. They can also help rig or catch dinghies. The children make friends and often become involved in racing, some ending up on the National Youth squads or equivalent or alternatively youngsters can learn how to instruct.


Ian currently races a Solo and has competed in Enterprise, Laser and RS400 dinghies in the past, winning many club trophies in both two person and single handed dinghies. He has been successful in Open meetings. Ian has been an Enterprise sail measurer and also a class representative on the Club Sailing Committee.


Ian became a RYA Dinghy and Powerboat Instructor in the mid-nineties, and subsequently became a Senior Dinghy Instructor. He still spends his spare time teaching at Notts County SC and has also taught at Whitwell on Rutland Water. He currently instructs on both RYA youth and adult courses and acts as Senior Instructor at the club.


Ian helps on our School taster days, bringing new members into the club. He actively supports the Open Meetings, School events and other activities. Another activity Ian is involved in is our Tuesday Night Novice Racing, he often runs the racing or is mentoring others both as a coach and race officer.


For around ten years Ian was the Sailability lead. A key part of this was liaising with several local Chernobyl charity groups that brought children from the contaminated land in Belarus he communicated through Russian speaking interpreters. The sailing day was always one of the children’s favourite days. He was involved in obtained sponsorship for our two club HANSA dinghies and he helps out at the annual HANSA open meeting at the club.


Volunteers like Ian keep our Sailing Clubs going. Ian has a particular interest in bringing new sailors including youngsters into the lifelong sport of sailing, but is also still a keen participant. We feel he would make an excellent recipient of an RYA Lifetime Commitment Award.


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