Return to sailing
We are delighted to advise you that, together with cautious confirmation and guidance from the RYA, we are open for Sailing and Windsurfing at Queen Mary Sailing Club.
You are making an active OPT IN choice to take part in an event, course, or go on the water and understand that you increase your risk and therefore household risk of exposure to COVID 19.
Please comply with any Government travel restrictions in force in the area you are travelling from. If new restrictions have been imposed since you entered the event, booked the course, or booked a slot to come and sail, meaning you can no longer travel, you will be entitled to a refund of the fee paid for this. Please contact the Club office if this is the case.
Following the latest government announcements regarding the coronavirus pandemic and in line with RYA advice, we are excluding any sailor/windsurfer, competitor, supporter or volunteer who lives in an area classified as having a COVID Alert Level of "Very High Risk" from travelling to or entering an event, attending the club for a course or sailing/windsurfing session.
Consideration for QM Team, Race Officers and Coaches: they are all in a work environment. Please respect their social distancing of 2m and be aware that staff will probably be wearing a mask when interacting with you, whether outside or inside.
Please see the Home page for club opening times.
- Standard Members please use your membership card to access for Sailing and Windsurfing.
- Club Members Racing please remember to pre-book your launching slot each week you intend to race.
- Select Members please use your membership card to access Queen Mary and please pre-book your sailing or Windsurfing slot before your visit Booking links at the bottom of this page
- Non Members with their own kit must book a Day sail. Please note we are not offering equipment hire at this time.
General Guidelines for Observing COVID-19 Restrictions when visiting
Please read these guidelines carefully before you book or set off to visit QMSC and please keep checking them before making future visits, since they will be periodically updated with the latest information.
The COVID-19 preventative measures are vital to protecting health and wellbeing and to minimising pressure on the frontline services. We all have a role to play in adhering to the Government guidelines and therefore we ask you to observe the following:
Check our website for the latest information
- Are you fit to visit? Please do not attend QMSC if you, or anyone in your household, are feeling unwell or experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19.
- Book your visit: Please book your sailing visit on the club website, completing one form for each visit you intend to make. The time you book is your time to go out on the water, so please arrive up to 30 minutes before the start of your time slot to allow for rigging/launching. Those intending to come to QMSC, but not sail, contact the office via the sailondon email so we can let you know when it is possible to come up. This this has to be done in advance.
- Before traveling: Please check the club website for the latest information; if changes in Government guidelines require the Club to be closed again, this will be communicated first at www.queenmary.org.uk
- Have you prepared yourself due to the lack of showering facilities and very limited changing room access?
- Do you have your hand sanitiser and face covering?
- Authorised guests (non-sailors): typically this will be parents or family members of sailors - have a plan for what you will do when your sailors are on the water - there may be no indoor space in which to watch and wait and it is illegal to gather in groups of larger than 6 people. Remember, dogs are not allowed on site under any circumstances, unfortunately.
On Entry to the Side: Can I sail and what can I sail?
- We are now required to request everyone who visits the site to register contact details with us, or to scan the NHS Covid-19 QR Codes (plenty around the Clubhouse). If you have pre-booked an activity of any sort, or registered with the organiser of an event being held at the Club, your details are already registered with that organisation.
- If you arrive with others, only one member of the group needs to have registered with us or with the NHS App.
- The Club is open only to fully paid up Standard Members and Select Members; to Day sailors with their own equipment; For Personal (1:1) and Group Tuition (6:1) coaching sessions with our instructors; We are not currently able to offer hire to the general public.
- Those who need on water assistance or support to go sailing/windsurfing and cannot provide this from within your own household, may not sail/windsurf at the Club for the moment. Staff assistance with launch and recovery will, however, be available to those who need it, with measures in place to preserve social distancing.
- Those coming to the Club may engage in windsurfing, stand-up paddle boarding, single handed sailing and double handed sailing but only with members of your own household.
Be considerate of others. Be conservative in your activity. Be patient and Be alert.
- We are doing everything we can to minimise the hard surfaces you’ll need to touch whilst on site and a regular cleaning regime will be in place, but we can’t avoid touch altogether so we recommend you bring along, and use your own hand sanitiser. We have plenty of hand sanitiser stations around the Club - please use these too.
- Gate entry and exit will be by Members' Access cards,pressing the buzzer only (use your gloves) and waiting for the office team to respond and let you in.
- The Duty Officer will be monitoring safety as usual and continually assessing numbers on the water. You may be asked to wait for someone to come in before you can go out.
- At all times please show consideration for others by respecting the social distancing requirement of 2 metres.
- When visiting QMSC must not gather in groups of more than 6 (with social distancing maintained).
- Signage: Please read and follow all signage on site.
- Please be considerate of the staff and follow their guidance at all times.
- Parents bringing children on site are responsible for making sure that your children observe these guidelines, especially social distancing. Please be prepared to help your children launch and recover their boats/boards. If you have one, please bring your own buoyancy aid, although Club ones will be available for those who don’t have their own and will be cleaned between users.
- Stairs from car park level - Please give priority to those moving up the stairs from the car park to the club house. When leaving please wait until the ‘upwards’ travellers have left the stairs; enjoy one last look at the boats and reservoir.
- Restrictions will be in place to ensure overcrowding does not take place around the site, this will be managed via the booking system, please note that advance booking is in line with government guidance
- You will be allowed to bring cars to the upper level for the purpose of unloading only. All vehicles must then be parked in the main lower car park to provide plenty of space for maintaining social distancing.
- The club house is ONLY open for the following: Access to toilets; Limited use of changing rooms, essential use only (5 changing zones in the Gents and 3 Ladies in use at any time) and the showers will remain closed, please arrive ready to sail; In the Changing Zones, please ensure that you tidy away all your kit and clothing and clean down the area when you've finished, to allow others to use the space. Clearly signed inside changing rooms
- We ask that you now wear a face covering at all times when inside the clubhouse to use the limited facilities
- The upper level of the club house and balcony remain closed. Any questions for the office please phone on 01784 248881 or speak to a member of the QM Team.
- There will not be any catering provisions available on site and drinking fountains and water bottle filling stations will be out of use. Please bring your own drinks with you, especially if the weather is warm.
- Hand washing facilities are available in the toilets and hand sanitiser will be provided at various locations on site. Please wash your hands regularly in line with government guidance and especially after touching hard surfaces and after you come off the water.
- Lake access will be confined to ‘casual sailing, casual windsurfing and casual supping’, Club Racing, authorised events and our training courses only.
- Please do not spend any longer on site than is necessary. Please give careful consideration to prevailing conditions and the condition of your equipment, when taking the decision to go afloat.
Boat launching and recovery
- Ensure you have a 3-metre painter, tied to your boat at all times.
- A detailed guide to Launching and Recovery can be found here: https://www.queenmary.or.uk/assets/Uploads/Members-guide-to-launch-and-recovery.pdf
- Double handers – Please use pontoons, following signage and guidance. Please use the electric winches to recover your boat.
- Single handers – Please use pontoons following signage and guidance. Please consider your safety before helping others and maintain social distancing; use the electric winches to recover your boat.
- Launching trollies – Please make sure your trolley is not left at the water’s edge; either tie your boat up to the pontoon whilst you move your trolley to a safe place, or ask for staff assistance
- Buckets of soapy water will be located by all winches – please use these to dunk the winch line carabiner after use and to wash your hands after using the winches.
- Limit numbers on pontoons: Maintain social distancing, follow signage and guidance
- The large pontoons - 2.5 metres wide; both sides of the large pontoons can be used; each section is 11.5m long, so a maximum of two boats per section.
- The black pontoon is 2 metres wide, so only the leeward side should be used. Each of the black square blocks is 0.5 metres square, so please keep five blocks distance. Maximum of three boats on the pontoon.
- Please give priority to those coming off the water
While Afloat during a course, sailing/windsurfing session or event:
- To avoid unnecessary contact with safety crews, only go on the water if your sailing/windsurfing skills are of a standard that enables you to right your craft unaided and return to the shore under the prevailing weather conditions on the day.
- Maintain social distancing on the water and avoid rafting with other boats/boards.
- Please note that any safety or support boats for events or courses will not be able to carry any dry bags, or personal items of yours whilst out on the water.
- Your booking will alert us to the kit you require and staff will be on hand to help
- Please come ready to sail, or wear a swim-suit if you require a club wetsuit as you will need to change outside of the clubhouse.
- Dinghy Select members: after sailing please bring your kit to the ‘clean-wash-dry’ station after use.
- Windsurf Select members: after windsurfing please clean all contact points on your kit used with the buckets of soapy water near the Select container.
- Wetsuits, buoyancy aids, harnesses: please do NOT put them back, but leave them for QM Team to deal with, in the Oppies (boats) near the wetsuit store.
RYA update 15th July - Is it appropriate for people from different households to sail together in the same dinghy, keelboat or yacht?
The Government is trusting people to continue to act responsibly and follow the guidance on what they should and should not do. Therefore, Standard Members (only) will have to make their own decisions on whether they can sail their own dinghy, whilst maintaining adequate social distancing. From the 4th July social distancing remains at 2 metres unless you use mitigating measures which will allow a reduction to 1 metre plus. On a boat, these mitigations could include (in addition to being outdoors) 1m separation marks on the deck, wearing face coverings, avoiding face to face contact, cleaning procedures, no shouting etc. The risk should be assessed case by case and with the correct mitigation in place, it may now be possible for up to 6 people from different households to sail certain boats.
It is the responsibility of the standard members concerned to ensure they adhere to social distancing measures when sailing together. Clubs should encourage safe sailing, but are not responsible for enforcing social distancing measures between members on the water sailing together in the same boat.
- Persons not respecting social distancing guidelines or reasonable requests from members of staff will be asked to leave the site.
- We are constantly reviewing this guidance; please stay alert to any changes in our guidelines.