Troon Cruising Club Newsletter
Welcome to the first newsletter after our AGM, which was conducted by Zoom this year due to the Covid restrictions, but was nevertheless well attended. Thanks to James Purss for setting this up, and inserting information as and when required. As you all know the restrictions look set to remain in place for a few months to come, but perhaps better lifting them slowly to ensure we don’t have a repeat of last time when we had to quickly reinstate them. The lift-in has been organised for 29 May 2021, and there is further information on this from Kyle Stewart later in this newsletter. Andy McRoberts, with Christine McManus’s assistance, and Kyle, have been ensuring the rules with regard to what we can and cannot do around the club in the meantime, and topping up supplies of sanitiser and paper towels as and when required.
We lost a number of members off the Council at the AGM, but are pleased to welcome on board to help us, Christine McManus, Hugh Wotherspoon and Maureen Short Mroz all of whom I am sure will do everything they can to run the Club efficiently and in a good atmosphere. The Constitution and Rules have been updated and we now run the Club with a Council of 11 in number.
Since the AGM, we have lost yet another stalwart of the Club in David Bone after a short illness, and I am sure you will join with me in offering our sincere condolences to the family, Christopher, Colin and Karen in their loss. David was very well known and larger than life, always ready to lend a hand or give advice to members around the Club. He regularly sailed out aboard Verlanda, and had a mooring off Arran, which he was kind enough to allow some of our members to use, if he wasn’t occupying it. I personally have known David since childhood, and his looks belied his age, until the last few months when he was so ill. He lost his wife Elizabeth a few years ago and I feel he never really got over this. He had a long association with Troon BB Company and many Troon boys over the years have benefited from tuition on the pipes under David, and now more so, his son Christopher, and as a result, the BB Company Pipe Band won many accolades. David always provided a young piper to pipe in the haggis at our Burns Suppers. There was an amazing turnout at the service at the cemetery, and a wonderful video of the service in Troon Old Parish Church – RIP David Bone.
I can be contacted by email – firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone 07828-586384 should you require any information.
I will do my best to assist you or point you in the right direction to whatever area you need information.
Babs Henderson – Commodore
The Officers and members of the Council of the Club for 2021
Commodore – Babs Henderson – (Minute Taker)
Vice-Commodore – Jim Palmer
Rear-Commodore – George Whiteside – (Membership Convenor)
Honorary Secretary – John McLatchie
Honorary Treasurer – John Woods
Compound and Moorings Convenor – Kyle Stewart
Clubhouse Convenor – Andy McRoberts – (Honorary Racing Secretary with sub- committee)
Social Convenor – Maureen Short Mroz
Cruising Convenor – Mark Johnston
Book-keeper – Kat Watson
Internet – John Haston
Newsletter – Peter Barker
Accountant – Kate Sneddon of Xcel Business Solutions – The accounts will in future be audited by external Auditors.
As you may be aware, the Club has now adopted the Sage Business Accounting package, which will hopefully be advantageous in collecting fees due to the Club. As with every new system, there have been some minor issues with billing, which are in the process of being rectified, and this should speed up the accurate collection of monies due.
It will also highlight the members who have omitted to pay. It is very important that when you receive a request for any fees, you pay them timeously. The Sage system will generate one reminder to be taken as a final request for payment. Thereafter, as per the Constitution and Rules, you will have deemed to have let your membership lapse. The implications of this are explained in the Constitution/Rules of the Club, which by signing your application, you have agreed to abide by. If by some chance there are extenuating circumstances, you must notify the Honorary Secretary, John McLatchie, who will bring it to the Council’s attention for discussion. If however, you no longer wish to be a member of the Club you must also notify the Secretary in writing, so that your details can be removed from the Club database so that you no longer receive any correspondence. All keys should be returned to the Club.
If you are a berth holder you must notify the Moorings Convenor, Kyle Stewart, of your intentions to remove your yacht/boat from the Club property immediately.
For those of you who attended the AGM Zoom meeting, you will know that my motion to increase the Joining Fee from £5 to £25, and the security deposit of £25 for a key for access to the Club and facilities, were agreed. The key deposit would be refunded on your key being returned. The reason for my suggestion was, I felt, that the Joining Fee was far too low, and had remained so for many years, and the key deposit was deter ex-members from accessing the Club and facilities after leaving. Also, the cost of having keys cut and being given out at £3 wasn’t viable any more.
Hopefully once the Covid restrictions are lifted this will enable us to carry out projects that have been held back and are still under discussion amongst the Council. In order to keep the costs of said projects down, I would ask that you consider putting you name forward for any work parties that may be required, or if you have a special skill set that would benefit the Club, and hopefully save some expenditure.
We are pleased to see that the majority of membership fees have been paid, and thanks to Kat Watson and our Sage system we are able to identify outstanding monies due. Kat has been working with Kate Sneddon of Xcel Business Solutions on this, and who has agreed to remain the Club’s accountant. Future audits will be carried out externally. While this will involve a cost to the Club, we, the Council think it puts the Club on a more business-like footing.
Compound Convenor’s Report
I trust that you are all keeping safe and well.
Now that we have a revised lift-in date I expect the compound will become busier as lockdown restrictions ease, thus allowing our members who stay a distance away to attend the club.
I would ask that we all continue to adhere to the Covid Team’s protocols and mitigations in our Risk Assessment and Methods Statement documents.
In doing so it will allow us to continue to operate with some degree of normality. I would ask that those of you who have been fortunate enough to have already had the Covid vaccine, please do not become complacent towards others. You can still catch and spread Covid to others who may not have yet been offered the vaccine and the potential protection the statistics intimate.
We would like to ask for, and offer assistance to, any of our members who may be struggling with work on their boats that is required to be done before lift-in. We invite any members in the first instance to contact the Compound Convenor to discuss any works that they may require assistance with due to extenuating circumstances. Likewise, could potential volunteers contact the Compound Convenor if they can assist at any time to man a work party concerning the aforementioned.
Numerous projects have been identified within the compound and are on hold until we get the boats lifted in and the Covid restrictions ease. More information will follow in the next newsletter.
We would ask members to be mindful in the coming weeks as footfall to the Club increases that club security is paramount. Please ensure due diligence in making the garage and compound area secure when you leave. It is everyone’s responsibility to do this.
Recently a set of aluminium oars went missing. They may have been taken by mistake. If so, please return them.
There has, over the years, been a steady flow of items taken and never returned so they have been effectively STOLEN. Any member found guilty will find their membership in jeopardy. No item should be taken, used, or removed from TCC premises without the express permission of the owner or appropriate convenor.
This will be a very different process from our traditional method due to the parameters likely to be in force as a result of Covid. Further information will be made available nearer the lift-in date.
We trust we can rely on your cooperation and support through these difficult times.
Kyle Stewart, Compound Convenor 07747895757
Moorings Convenor’s Report
We have continued with checks on all our moorings on a regular basis, making good any issues as we find them.
These checks have been carried out by a small group of volunteers who have the appropriate paperwork to allow travel throughout the various stages of lockdown, giving our membership reassurance that their boats are safe and being looked after.
A recent survey of the wall moorings highlighted that a large percentage of these are in a very poor condition. We intend to undertake an updated survey and will be writing to individual members concerning what will be required of them to bring their mooring up to standard.
The Club intends to offer a package comprising the required quality and length of chain combined with pre-spliced warps at a competitive price to assist our members in this task.
Despite Covid, we have been able to welcome new boats into the Club and there has also been a steady stream of interest which will hopefully continue.
Work has been done along the wall to remove the vegetation. This was carried out in accordance with Covid protocol and when restrictions allowed. Further work is required to remove old chain and debris from the foreshore and around the moorings.
Dates for work parties will be posted when the lifting of Covid restrictions allows.
We will keep members regularly advised of information that affects what we can do at the Club as it becomes available.
We hope we can rely on your continued support and cooperation throughout these difficult times hopefully allowing us in due course to move forward as restrictions are lifted.
Moorings Convenor & Moorings Sub-Committee.
Social Convenor’s Report
Hi. I’m Maureen Short Mroz, and have been elected as Social Convenor for my sins. Obviously because of the restrictions imposed on us meantime there won’t be much happening for a few months at the very least, but as soon as things open up I will be arranging some events for you. In the meantime, if there is anything different or new you would like me to arrange for you, then please let me know. I’m open to new ideas, but hope to still keep going with the old tried and tested evenings, such as Mediterranean Night, Cheese and Wine, and perhaps a film show of interest, etc. And, of course, once we get back to normal with the lift-in/out days, I will be looking for help from the ladies (and gents) of the Club to man the galley!
Clubhouse Convenor’s and Covid Team Report
The RYA has not needed to post any further Covid updates since the 5th January 2021.
TCC own risk assessment and Covid protocols have seen us ahead of most updates but our initial risk assessment is due for review.
On 1st March 2021 there were no rule changes from the RYA after the Scottish Government review of the latest lockdown at the end of February.
We do not expect much change to our risk assessment. It has seen us through both lockdowns, was comprehensive from the start and so far there has been little need for change.
We had another swimmer this month, a big thanks to John Paton for spotting the person in the water. John carried on with the rescue and I boarded the boat and brought it safely back to the landing pontoon.
The casualty was taken into the clubhouse to warm up and his circulation restored. He left for home with dented pride and a bin bag full of very soggy clothes.
The cleaner was contacted and I initiated a clean of the clubhouse and the shower room.
The Gel station at the gate is being filled regularly which is a good sign that it is being used. However, the one at the garage/workshop is not. It is concerning the number of times the garage is open and used and the relative lack of use of the gel, spray and wipes provided. Sharing tools is a sure way to spread the virus. It needs just one person to bring the virus in to create big issues. Please sanitise your hands/gloves, wipe/spray the tools you use as you may be the next one to pick up what could be an infected piece of equipment.
As the weather improves and we come closer to “hopefully the end of lockdown and to “lift in”, we hope more members will be able to get their boats ready for the water. We all know from normal times the typical last frantic days before lift-in. Please try to get the jobs done sooner rather than that later.
With more members potentially attending the club premises as lift-in gets closer the risks from Covid get greater so it is important to start as soon as you possibly can, and be aware of how many people are around you. Always follow all the rules of the Club, the RYA and the Government.
Please be aware the vaccine does not rid us entirely of Covid but hopefully protects us from the severity of the Virus. Thank you to all those looking after themselves and their fellow members. Stay safe and healthy – F.A.C.T.S.
The RYA has clarified the Scottish Government Covid guidelines which I’ve summarised below:
Travel exemptions have been confirmed as allowing owners of private boats to travel to their vessels to undertake essential maintenance.
Essential maintenance is work which if not undertaken would cause failure or become an imminent safety issue. Some examples are; repairs to prevent water ingress, winterising engines, pumping out bilges and maintaining/ replacing mooring and berth warps.
National Regulations are intended to be flexible to allow a person to leave home for a genuinely essential purpose. Rather than setting out an exhaustive list of every reasonable excuse, it leaves it to the individual to make a judgment as to whether a purpose is essential or not.
The Scottish Government will try to ensure examples are included in future guidance but where this is not explicitly stated, it would be for the individual to determine the circumstances whether or not travel would be acceptable and essential.
Essential maintenance should be completed as quickly as possible. Travel for essential maintenance should not be used as a pretext to spend the day aboard ‘pottering’ or for a weekend away. You should not stay longer than the length of time required to undertake essential maintenance.
As the entire sector is currently closed as part of a national lockdown, only travel for essential maintenance is presently allowed.
For the future……..Travel for cosmetic improvements or preparatory work for the coming season, will open-up as restrictions are relaxed in the coming weeks, on par with other sectors.
Following the announcement by the First Minister RYA Scotland will be reviewing the current guidance in full with further links for advice for members, clubs, classes and training centres, as well as recreational boating in the UK and abroad
Covid Team and Honorary (Redundant) Biscuit Convenor.
Important Announcement – Street Parking
Members are respectfully reminded of the guidelines regarding the parking of vehicles to the front of the club. We have again been receiving complaints from residents of members’ cars parking too close to the Garden Place junction and obstructing the visibility for vehicles emerging onto Harbour Road. This practice is not only dangerous but inconsiderate to the residents. There have been several requests sent round our members previously regarding this matter. Parking is not permitted beyond the lamp post on the town side of the junction where a sign clearly indicating this request has been affixed. We would ask members attending the club to comply with this simple request. Thank you in anticipation of your cooperation.