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The best way to learn to sail is to follow the tried and tested programme laid down by the Royal Yachting Association (RYA). These are the adult beginner courses Levels 1 and 2, which provide a safe and structured entry into the world of dinghy sailing.  You will learn:

  • How to steer and turn a dinghy
  • RYA_logoLaunching and recovery
  • Parts of the sail and sail controls
  • Rules of the road
  • Points of sailing
  • Weather, wind and tides
  • Sailing safety
  • The 5 Essentials for fast and efficient sailing.

On completion of these courses, you should be able to sail a dinghy on your own on all points of sailing in light to moderate winds and will be well equipped to progress onto the intermediate Level 3 course Better Sailing and then more advanced courses such as Seamanship Skills, Sailing with Spinnakers, and Start Racing.

To find out more or book a place, please email a completed application to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

All courses are for Hunts SC members only.  No places are confirmed until an application form has been returned and course fee paid.

To find out more about RYA courses, visit the RYA website

To make sure you get the most out of your sailing or powerboat course there are some things you'll need to bring with you to make sure you have an enjoyable day.

Food and drink

On most occasions we will be able to make hot drinks in the galley, as well as having access to drinking water.  You may, however, find you want to bring your own cold drinks with you, especially in the summer.  Unless specifically stated otherwise, the galley will not be open, so you will need to bring your own lunch and snacks to keep you going - sailing is good exercise and can make you hungry!


The golden rule is better to bring too much rather than too little, so make sure you have layers you can wear on the water and take on or off as appropriate.  A lightweight, waterproof jacket is important, and waterproof trousers can make you more comfortable if you have them.  Do make sure you bring a towel and warm clothes to wear afterwards.

Do bring a buoyancy aid if you have one, although these can be provided.  We do not provide wetsuits, but do bring one if you have one.  A woolly hat or beanie is important in the winter, and in the summer you should bring a cap or sun hat.  Sunglasses are useful, but do make sure you have them secured!  Waterproof suncream is very important in the summer and parents must apply this regularly to their children.


You ARE going to get your feet wet so please, no designer trainers!  The best things to wear are soft soled plimsoll type shoes or old trainers that will stay on your feet.  Crocs, cloggies or flip flops are not allowed.  Basically, if you couldn't kick a ball in them, they are not allowed!


If you or your child carry an inhaler please make sure it is in a small, waterproof container or bag and clearly bears your name.


If you have any forms that must be signed or any outstanding paperwork or payment for your course booking, please bring them with you.  Please also bring a logbook if you have one that is relevant to your course, otherwise one will be provided.  You should bring a pen or pencil and a notebook for any written exercises, or in case you want to take notes.


Please do not leave valuables in the changing rooms.  Lockers are available in the clubhouse.


  • Wetsuit or drysuit (if you have one)
  • Waterproof top and trousers
  • Soft-soled shoes
  • A large plastic bag for taking home wet clothes
  • Warm clothes to wear after sailing
  • A large towel
  • Buoyancy aid (if available)
  • Log book (if you have one)
  • Notebook and pen or pencil
  • Packed lunch and drinks.

At Hunts we are fortunate enough to have a number of club boats for use on training courses and also by those members who have not yet bought a boat of their own, or wish to use a suitable boat for guests.  Hire is only available to club members, and with the exception of the club Toppers and Optimists, boats must be sailed with a club member on board.

These boats are available for hire at very reasonable rates, but can only be booked in advance for use on training courses.  Otherwise a first-come, first-served system is used.  

Oppies and Optimists

These are great boats for the youngest sailors in the family.  They are small single handers with very basic, uncomplicated controls.  Sail area is just over 3.5m and the boat is 2.3m in length.


A very popular single hander, suitable for small adults and children, the topper is an excellent way to enjoy both crusing and racing, and an ideal starter boat.  Sail area is just over 5m and the boat is 3.4 metres in length.  We now also have a small number of 4.2m sails for slightly lighter sailors  The club toppers are currently centre sheeted.


A fun boat for the small adult or larger child.  The Pico is centre sheeted, meaning you tack facing forwards, and has a sail area of just over 5m, and can also be sailed by two, with a small jib.

Laser 2000

Also available to hire.

Laser Vago

Also available to hire.

The standard Sailing Instructions have been superceded by the Covid-19 Sailing Instructions.

Click here for the Covid-19 Sailing Instructions




1. Rules. Races organised by Hunts Sailing Club will be sailed under the current Racing Rules of Sailing unless amended in these sailing instructions or by posting any changes in the clubhouse at least 15 minutes before the start of any race/series and by the Rules and by-laws of Hunts SC.

2. Starting Times. As shown in the programme or as posted in the club house (latter takes precedence). The start sequence interval (rule 26) will be 3 minutes. For class racing the fleets will be started in the following order: Phantom, Laser, Enterprise, Handicap,Cadet/Novice. Fleet starts may be amalgamated at the discretion of the Race Officer.

3. Courses. The course to be sailed, the number of laps and Start and Finishing lines will be indicated on the course board at least 15 minutes before the start of the race. When the outer limit marked '0' is included in the course, boats shall pass between the outer limit and inner limit on each lap and when finishing. The course will also be displayed when possible on the race box.

4. The Starting Line. Will be a virtual line drawn from either the Race Box flag pole or Committee Boat to an outer limit buoy, or as specified on the course board. When an inner distance mark is used, boats approaching the line to start, shall pass between this mark and the outer distance mark. Failure to do so will mean the boat has not started.

5. Recalls.

a) If one or more identifiable boats are over the line at the start, a second sound signal will be made and the 'X' flag will be flown until all offenders have returned and restarted correctly or for two minutes, whichever is the shorter.

b) If a number of boats are over the line at the start and cannot be identified, the General Recall flag will be hoisted with two sound signals. The start recalled will start after the last programmed start. Any additional recalls will start in sequence. The timing of such starts will be in accordance with Instruction 2.

6. Shortening Course. The signal will be made when the leading boat of the class to be shortened is about to round the last mark (which may be any mark of the course). The finishing line will then be designated by the virtual line between the Committee Boat mast and the next mark of the course, the race box mast and mark, or as detailed by the Race Officer. The signal will be the raising of the flag ‘S’ together with the flags of the classes to be shortened. The race will be deemed to have finished when the leading boat of the class to finished crosses the finishing line. If all the classes are to be shortened at the same time, flag 'S' alone will be hoisted. Two sound signals will draw attention to the flag. In this context, the handicap fleet is a class and 'leading boat' means leading on the water.

7. Finishing. A sound signal will indicate that a boat has finished. In handicap races, average lap times may be used at the discretion of the Race Officer.

8. Time limit. In the event of no boat completing one lap of the course in one hour, the race will be abandoned. Any boat not finishing within 30 minutes of the leading boat will, except in handicap racing, be deemed to have retired, or at the discretion of the Race Officer, be given the race position held at the end of the thirty minute period.

9. Declaration. Helmsmen will enter their names prior to the start on the form provided. All finishers will be assumed to have complied with the rules unless they inform the Race Officer that they wish to retire or protest. Any such notification should be as soon as possible after finishing.

10. Scoring System will be in accordance with Appendix A of the racing rules - low point system. The number of races counted in the overall score for the series is shown in the sailing programme. Where races in a club series are cancelled, the number of races to count will be varied according to the formula “half the number of races sailed (rounded down if not even number) + 1”. Where a competitor has not sailed sufficient races t count, DNCs will be scored to make up the required number of races. Unless notified before the first race, race series comprising less than 6 scheduled races shall be scored as a Regatta, 6 or more scheduled races will be scored as a Series (Appendix A, Clause 9).

At least two entries are needed to run a race. In the event of only one entry in a race, the race will be abandoned. The boat concerned will be invited to sail in a different fleet but will not score in it.

If, in any Club Series, a series competitor is requested to do additional duties (additional to allocated duties, or to voluntary duties required for qualification) the additional duties will be scored with the average position of races the competitor has sailed in that series (excluding from the average any discardable sailed races). Additional duties will be allocated to those who have completed the greatest number of races unless a member of the Sailing committee or the Race Officer gives authorisation. Any person performing additional duties must note this on the results sheet or average points may not be given.

The scoring system will be applied to combinations of helmsmen or boat. Changes of boat or increase in rig power mid series must be discussed with the Fleet Captain or Sailing Secretary. Approval may be granted if no advantage is gained by the change. In the Twilight Series, a competitor's best result will count.

11. Flags. Code flag 'E'-Enterprise, '*'-Laser, 'H'-Handicap, 'NP8'-Fast Handicap, 'NP9'-Slow Handicap, "NPl'-Solo, 'G'-All Comers, 'Z'-Sailboard, 'ghost'-Phantom, 'Skull and Crossbones'-Cadet/Novice, 'N'-Abandon, 'AP'-Postponement, '1st Sub'-General Recall, 'P'-Preparatory, 'S'-Shorten Course, 'I'-I Flag Rule, and 'X'- premature starters. (Note: '*' = Laser logo on red square flag; 'ghost' = Phantom logo on white square flag).

12. Protests. Must be made to the Race Officer within 30 minutes of the last boat finishing the race. The protest meeting will be held in the Clubhouse as soon as possible after the race or as specified by the Race Officer.

13. A Personal Floatation Device must be worn at all times when on the water. The byelaws provide detailed guidance.

14. Cruising. Is permitted at all times. Boats cruising should keep clear of all boats racing. 

15. Propulsion. A protest or race committee, including designated Race Officers and Rescue Officers, may, in accordance with rule 67, disqualify a boat for infringement of rule 42 without a hearing.

16. Continuing Obstructions. The area within 10m of the shore may be occupied by fishermen and may be considered a continuing obstruction at all times.

Women on the Water is casual, supervised sailing for women only with friendly, informal tuition from female instructors, and takes place on Tuesday mornings from 10am onwards.  You can sail your own boat if you have one, or club boats will be available for hire.  Safety cover will be provided at all times, as will the essential tea and cakes!  Sailors of every ability are welcome, including complete beginners, and everyone is encouraged to learn at their own pace in a non competitive and relaxed environment.

We meet most weeks during term time, and sometimes during short school holidays.  We may, however, cancel or simply stay ashore if the weather is bad.  To check if we're going ahead or to find out more, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Safety Boat For This Week

Tue 11th Aug 16:30-19:00  Yes   
Sat 15th Aug 13:30-16:30 Yes  
Sun 16th Aug 11:00-16:30 Yes