Salcombe Merlin Rocket Week - No Longer Family Friendly
The dates are heading in the wrong direction. Next year (2010) is scheduled for Jul 4 = big problems for those with kids of school age. Is the merlin establishment pro family or does it have some commercial interest (or kickback) for extending the season for the increasingly affluent second home owners? I vote for the week starting on week 3 in Jul. BTW - pls pls pls try to stick to the same week going forward so that we can secure the same property year on year...
Salcombe Week has never been in the school holidays as far as I know. Or were you merely referring to private school's holidays?
I saw the dates and cringed too. We always have to take the children out of school for the last week which is fine as there's not much going on and they've/we've had enough! However the week before is a pain in the proverbial, so we really have to decide whether the children miss their sports days, plays etc and go back to school for a boring week or miss Salcombe altogether. Didn't this happen a few years ago and the date changed to a more favourable one for families with school age children?
We do generally try and ensure events are as 'school friendly' as possible but Salcombe Week and the Champs are first and foremost sailing competitions and we have to get the tides right, avoiding springs and mid day low water.
I have nothing to do with this anymore - and no kids at school anymore either - although we wrestled with this problem for many years, so you parents have my sympathy.
Child friendly week at Salcombe? There are two to choose - SYC regatta and Salcombe Town regatta both have races for under 18's. I think School Govenor has more interest in his/her own sailing!!! If you want to ensure your children grow up non-sailors then dump them on the beach with granny while you go and enjoy your Merlin!
Saying that, given the choice of the pathetic 'non competitive' Sports Days where everyone is a winner and School Plays, the children would chose Salcombe any day. It's as much about them catching up with old friends, making new ones, having fun and sailing as it is for us! See you in 2010 then!
Tosh, how did you succeed in drugging your wife to enjoy being dragged around to sailing events? I need step-by-step instructions please.
He doesn't, I enjoy it, always have done, the children enjoy it and it's the lesser of two evils as I can cruelly hand over the children the moment he steps off the water ;o)
It is also worth considering that there are less RIBS and Boston Whalers on the race track out of school holidays and more accommodation available at cheaper rates.
"The annual blister"!
To the above. and I thought I was a grumpy
My kids never went to Salcombe until they were old enough to helm Merlins.
To Mr fuller and Ms anonymous.
errmm, that should have been Mr Tosh!
I can't see that I have anything in common with .
Still upside down then?
That's a bit unfair, they were the longest lasting 49er at the Tiger Trophy in 30 knot gusts (yes none survived)
I think we are getting away from the original thread, that being that we need to make a choice as families what our needs/wants are. Personally after my initial concerns about the dates for 2010 (and which I now fully understand thanks to Alex and Pat - thank you!) I asked the children what they would rather do and unanimously opted to forego school stuff in favour of Salcombe. It doesn't matter when Merlin Rocket week is the agencies will ALWAYS increase their prices as they know they can cash in on it and I don't think for a minute there is any kickback. That's just the way it goes - make hay while the sun shines as they say.
former whitstable pro
Actually only Salcombe Holiday Homes had Merlin Week as high season this year - Coast and Country charged the week as mid-season !!!
Mrs T,I totally agree with you,we will still go when jack is at school age, immaterial of when it is,I get little time enough to spend with him anyway,my only worry is your potential role models for your kids!Women... drinking...terrible!!
In terms as sailing as brothers!!
Well said Mrs T
Thanks Mrs T, I'm sure it won't be long till the Tosh siblings are out on the water showing us all clean transom's as they sail to victory.
I suggest Salcombe Merlin Rocket Week is much more than just a sailing week. Some of today's younger sailors may not realise that every year Salcombe attracts a huge gathering of sailors and ex-sailors who go there to renew friendships made at Salcombe 20, 30, 40 years ago. Like others of their generation my son and daughter William and Jane also go to Salcombe year after year to spend time with lifelong friends they met on Millbay beach when they were all toddlers.
tide tables eh? who'd have 'em.
As a father of 2 school age children I noted next years Merlin week dates with horror and of the many families in our "group" a good deal of them have said they probably will not be coming.
The last day of school summer term for 2010 is Friday 23rd July so MW is 3 weeks before the end of term !!
Explained before, I think, tides sadly like the law of gravity you cannot repeal the law of the tides, a previous poster tried it a long time ago and his dramatic failure has put people off trying ever since.
Can't be tides because that's 2 weeks later than the current week making the tides approx the same !!
One other SYC consideration is having a recovery time between Merlin Week and SYC/Town Regatta (whichever comes first) all three of these events draw on considerable resources, especially from volunteers and I would suggest there needs to be at least a two week gap between Merlin Week and the first Regatta.
My advice - take them out of school and poke two fingers up at the nanny state...
As a member of the teaching profession as of September my question is... how do you manage to teach and get to Salcombe week? Is it that private school holidays are complimentary for Salcombe week if so as a mainstream Geography teacher will I have to forgo Salcombe for the inevitable future?
Hummm, that's a good point Rachel. Alex made the point about tide tables and the closeness of Salcombe to The Champs being the two main reasons for the date that has been set. Without wanting to upset those who see Salcombe week as a purely sailing event, maybe, if logistically possible, year on year Salcombe week could potentially be organised to fall early in the holidays and the Champs towards the end of August which would accommodate everyone. This would keep numbers up and smiles on everyone's faces.
Rachel, make sure you teach at a school with Merlin sailing kids, then you take them to Salcombe as a school event, you could use the S.E.A.L. (social, emotional, aspects of learning) argument to sell it to your head. There are loads of schools who quote this in their anual ski trip letters to parents and head teachers to justify the time out of school.
So how about moving the week to half-term (end May/ early June time) and asking the club to put on a handicap race for under 18's? The children can then bring their Cadets, Mirrors, Toppers etc....
I am married to an ex-teacher. Over the years we have had repeated problems because of the week appearing to creep earlier in the calendar (whether or not it actually has) and either I have come for the week and Becky has come down for the end or in 2007 & 2008 I missed the week altogether. As only half the day is racing at Salcombe it has always been more family-friendly than the typical Champs - off the beach at 11:30, sometimes not back till 5:00. There is only so much time I can take off work and it's not fair to the family to have 2 full weeks away sailing without them. I'm sure a lot of other people who enjoy their sailing but have a lot else in their lives are the same. I did swing it with the school for Ellie to take time out to sail when she was in her early teens but this was not possible when she was in the lower 6th as there was work she needed to be in school doing. Fortunately now Becky is doing other things and we have no school age children there are no issues for us any more, but mid-July would always have been easier than the beginning, and the moon being what it is the tides in one week will be very similar to those a fortnight later.
Last year the week was early enough for Ellie not to have finished her university term
It seems a perfect time to point out that this year the champs is only one race a day with starts at 12 and there is loads to do for the whole family;
Merlin week in school holdays would bring its own problem(s)
I don't think anybody is saying have it in the holidays and I can't actually remember it ever being in the school holidays. It's the fact that it's 3 weeks before the end of term and has been creeping forward over a number of years.
I think pjm has hit the nail on the head - of course it's a pity that parents with school children/school teachers may not be able to attend but you simply wouldn't fit 100 merlins in at Salcombe during school hols - never mind the significantly increased accomodation cost.
I suspect that there will always be a full entry list regardless of dates.
Personally I would prefer it, if less people went...
I agree with RH- which I might add is a rare thing! Bring back to the 18th as it used to be. Might be able to miss one week of school. (That is me and not the boys!!) Will miss next year as far to early. Will be the first missed Salcombe Week since nappies!
Looking for a crew - anyone interested
Well, what a hornets nest this has stirred up !!We first raced a Merlin at Salcombe in 1962 in the Yacht Club Regatta (cash prizes in plain brown envelopes- usually hoovered up by Harris, J.) Several years of this, then small kids and a new Merlin week, so we carried on coming to Yacht Club and Town Regatta weeks, excellent fun for the nippers. Kids got bigger, now in their forties, so back to Merlin week crewing aforementioned Harris, J. Now as old as Methuselah so come to watch racing on the water and grandchildren on the beach.Three weeks out of school(or 2 out and 1 back)is not on, so no grandchildren at Salcombe, no us. If it goes back to where it was 20 years ago we may make it (arthritis permitting) but we will have lost the property we have had for several years. Life must be so simple for the young Merlin sailor with no kids. I suppose that was me once !!
For more than 40 years Salcombe Merlin Week has been where the Stokes children, ours and many others have made lifelong friendships. In my opinion to deny today's M/R children the same opportunity in the current emailing, mobile, texting, Facebook environment is a mistake.
My brother John has won Salcombe Merlin Rocket week six times and has probably sailed in the event more than anyone else. He has written a letter to the chairman and asked me to post the text on this forum. With John's agreement I've made a few minor changes to clarify some points.
Someone who can never get to Salcombe.
If Salcombe will not play ball there are plenty of very good venues that may be glad to give us a week.
Just a thought, has anyone asked Salcombe YC directly why they selected this date. But please bear in mind the following:- The race officers, and core of rescue boats are manned by volunteers from the sailing club, not to mention all the meetings prior to this to enable the regatta to happen. OK so there are paid staff, behind the bar, in the kitchen, and John M. running the show, but an event like this takes a lot of time and input. The club also has two other regatta's in August, The Club and Town regatta's which are also run with large numbers of volunteers. I have sailed at Salcombe when the tides have been less than perfect, and must say that at times it is very crowded, and in light winds nigh on impossible to sail against the tide. All in all Salcombe do the best they can to give the best water conditions possible, and organisation. I think we should be saying a very big thanks to all at Salcombe for having the Merlin’s (when not a club class fleet, and allowing us to sail in what must be considered a very unique setting for racing, and not slatting them. Perhaps sitting down and asking what can be done for future years, and what we can do to help.
. or . or .....
It is one of my ambitions to sail Salcombe week. Not next year but maybe the one after.
Someone who can never get to Salcombe.
Not I think a critique of the club as such, but more a rather biased non-acceptance that you cannot please all of the people all of the time.
Salcombe is Y&Y number 1 event 'not to be missed'. Alternative venues miss the point.
Hip Hurra til Salcombe og Merlin Rockets i en gra og gretten verden!
Den betydelig sagen er at hen til nyde sjor og koblob og holds skrap overalt hvorden.
Stick with the good week that Salcombe offer, as there are plenty of other child friendly sailing weeks in the school holidays for those that can't go - a prime example is Pyefleet week which even has a Merlin Rocket start!
Another point to remember - and probably already mentioned some while ago on this thread - is that the Class holds its National Champs in August, and to run Salcombe and the champs too close together is likely to diminish the fleets in one or both of these events. This did happen a few years ago and complaints were received from members who were unable to attend both as a result. Committee then expressed the wish to see at least 4 clear weeks between the events so that those who wished to would have more chance of attending both.
Which goes to show what we already know that you cannot please all the people all of the time, and perhaps the sphere of influence may be moving ans those losing influence may not be as happy as those gaining it!
Why do so many of you use nom de plumes? Whether you're for or against my brother's point of view your case is weakened if you can't be identified by the majority of readers. Are all anonymous posters current members of the MROA?
I guess as long as the attendance numbers stay up, Salcombes decision as to dates is vindicated, if the entries fall then they may rethink in 2011?
Perhaps Salcombe week scheduling could be an item for the AGM agenda, although ironically many of those with strong opinions may not be able to make it...
Which makes a case for the AGM being held at the Inlands - a more central venue.
Average turnout for the Inlands has been only 40 boats in recent years (unlike 80 at the Champs, and 100 at Salcombe) but of course if the venue is central some members who aren't racing that day may still attend....but not many I'd bet.
As Salcombe has the biggest turn out of boats by far, why not have the AGM there.
We do, that is the irony in RH's post!
Off the 100 boats at Salcombe, how many people went to the AGM this year
70 in total (61 Full Members and 9 Associate Members)
1 family booked in to accommodation as of today, children have their spades packed, school informed, just have to tell the husband now!
Two families booked, Rachel, Hywel and bump.
Yey - buckets galore, sand castles and ice creams! We'll look forward to more babes on the beach whilst watching the racing. Good stuff! Make sure you get to the Open Meeting too BP family, Great for scrumptious snuggle baby stuff and Daddies to have sorted sailing times. Can't wait!
got myself booked into a dog friendly cottage so im coming next year