This year's Dinghy Show the 60th?

20/01/2011 09:51:04
Robert Harris
The RYA is saying in it's advertising that this year's Dinghy Show in March is the 60th time it's it's been held. That means it started in 1952 two years before the first London Boat Show at Olympia in 1954, I find that difficult to believe. I started sailing Cadets at Minima Y.C. in 1952, by then I was sailing mad so if it did happen I surely would have remembered it. 

I always thought the Dinghy Show started much later when dinghies virtually disappeared from the London Boat Show.

Maybe I've got it wrong, can anyone else remember what happened that far back?

20/01/2011 10:36:31
David Child
Robert I am a good ten years your junior but I certainly recall  getting leave from Saturday school in 1958 and onwards to go to a show that was dinghy's and ailing with talks by people like Stewart Morris, Cliff Norbury, Austin Farrar, Peter Scott and Ian Proctor about various aspects of sailing from building through sails and sailing. I remember (Have pictures of.) Cliff's National 12 Shoestring, Jack Knights home built glass fibre Finn amongst others.

The EXhibition was organised by The Central Council for Physical Recreation and I think the RYA, jointly, it was held at The Duke of Yorks Headquarters, at the Sloane Square end of the Kings Road in Chelsea, then a TA barracks HQ for 22 SAS and where a lot of athletes trained on the running track there in their lunch times and after work.

I recently attended a dinner there and remembered those shows which were fun and instructive too.

20/01/2011 10:36:32
David Child
Robert I am a good ten years your junior but I certainly recall  getting leave from Saturday school in 1958 and onwards to go to a show that was dinghy's and ailing with talks by people like Stewart Morris, Cliff Norbury, Austin Farrar, Peter Scott and Ian Proctor about various aspects of sailing from building through sails and sailing. I remember (Have pictures of.) Cliff's National 12 Shoestring, Jack Knights home built glass fibre Finn amongst others.

The EXhibition was organised by The Central Council for Physical Recreation and I think the RYA, jointly, it was held at The Duke of Yorks Headquarters, at the Sloane Square end of the Kings Road in Chelsea, then a TA barracks HQ for 22 SAS and where a lot of athletes trained on the running track there in their lunch times and after work.

I recently attended a dinner there and remembered those shows which were fun and instructive too.

20/01/2011 11:12:43
Robert Harris
Ah yes. You're probably right David because in 1962/3 I remember arguing the case for the Adur 6 with Stewart Morris and others at a show in Chelsea.  However I still question whether it was first held as early as 1951 and if so did the stuffy YRA (as it was then) sponsor it? There were plenty of dinghies at the early Boat Shows at Olympia, indeed in around 1956/57 I worked there in the evenings for an obscure boat builder who disappeared long ago.

Anyway it's hardly a matter of national importance!

20/01/2011 16:00:08
Keith Callaghan
Robert, the first Dinghy Exhibitions [sic] that I got involved with were not organised by the RYA, but the Central Council for Physical Recreation (CCPR). There was a fearsome lady called Alex Cowie who was in charge. That would be approx 1968-70. They took place at Crystal Palace. I don't know how they started up, however.

20/01/2011 19:56:11
Robert Harris
Thanks Keith. I just about remember the formidable Alex Cowie. I suspect she also ran the ones in Chelsea that David referred to. So the RYA's Dinghy Show website is is slightly incorrect when it says "The RYA Dinghy Show will be celebrating it's 60th show on 5 and 6 March" etc.

25/01/2011 21:53:39
Douglas
I'd always thought that it was first held at the Picketts Lock Centre, which opened in 1973. It then moved to Crystal Palace in the early 1980s and finally back to Alexandra Palace. So I'd guess around 38th anniversary; still a decent record.

27/01/2011 20:15:34
JimC
> The RYA is saying... the 60th time it's it's been held. That means it started in 1952

I don't think it does mean that... The wording seems quite careful with no mention of anniversary or anything. Was there perhaps a pre war event which could be claimed as an ancestor and didn't start up again until a few years after the war? Or perhaps a period when they were running two shows a year? I don't remeber the latter in my time, but the former seems a possibility.

27/01/2011 22:50:10
David Child
The venues went:-
Duke of Yorks Headquarters Chelsea, - Pickets Lock,- Crystal Palace,- Alexandra Palace that much is certain, it started sometime in the early to mid 1950's. If it was held every year without a break and the precise year of its begining is unclear, and if it was started by the RYA/YRA or they climbed on the bandwagon of the CCPR is far less clear even to the CCPR who I asked. NO doubt having made the claim the RYA are sure?

27/01/2011 23:34:07
barnsie
Reminds me of Wallems of Hong Kong who a few years ago did a big push on a major aniversery only to find, when a book worm went through detailed history to be 1% out, 2 years early. So it would be interesting to find out what allocation amounts to the 60 years.
Await updates with interest.

10/02/2011 17:14:05
Cassandra
The real problem seems to be not if it be 60 years in total orn not but the not for the first time by imlication the RYA is claiming the credit for an excellent idea.
It was the Central Council for Physical Recreation and remained so for a large number of years, beyonf a passing reference to Alex Cowie (CCPR.) you would think it was all their idea, all spin and wind as usual.

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