An 18-year-old Kings Bromley sailor insists “I wouldn’t be the person I am without sailing” as a month of free RYA Push The Boat Out ‘try sailing’ events launches across South Staffordshire next week.
Having been bitten by the bug on a school taster session at Cannock Chase, Josie Crane hasn’t looked back after going along to Manor Park Sailing Club’s free open day seven years ago. Last year Josie spent three months in Connecticut as ‘Head of Sailing’ at Camp America and is currently studying for a BEng (Hons) in Yacht and Powercraft Design at Southampton Solent University, the only female on her course.
Six venues are hosting Push The Boat Out events around South Staffordshire in May, with Blithfield SC, Chase SC and Tamworth SC all welcoming anyone to ‘have a go’ on Bank Holiday Monday 7 May, with Tamworth also opening their doors on Saturday 5 May.
Manor Park SC invite all comers to Push The Boat Out the following Saturday 12 May and Greensforge SC on the Sunday 13 May. South Staffordshire SC are then holding their ‘try sailing’ open day on Saturday 19 May. All kit and safety equipment is provided so bring a pair of old trainers you don’t mind getting wet and your sense of adventure and fun. Find your nearest Push The Boat Out event at www.rya.org.uk/ptbo
Josie believes you won’t regret it. She said: “My club has 100% been my biggest influence and driving force to get me to where I am, Without sailing I wouldn’t be at university, I wouldn’t have been able to travel to America and I don’t think I’d be the same person I am today. I will never be able to thank them enough for what they have done for me in giving me the skills and love of the sport that has allowed me to get this far.
“Life can throw so many crazy obstacles at you, I understand this even though I’m still young. Sailing can do the same. You never know what each sail will bring. That’s why I love the freedom and versatility sailing offers. If things are getting on top of you, you can escape away on a boat for a little while."
Josie, who lives in Burton-upon-Trent, learned the ropes through the RYA’s low cost grassroots programme, OnBoard, at Manor Park before qualifying as an Assistant Instructor, gaining her RYA Powerboat Level 2 qualification and becoming a full RYA Dinghy Instructor. Josie had attended a specialist performing arts school in Birmingham, where she was studying musical theatre. But becoming a sailing instructor changed the direction of her life.
She added: “Teaching sailing is one of the most rewarding experiences of my whole life. Sailing has given me confidence and the ability to talk to and teach people of all ages. It’s also given me more creativity and versatility because when you get to your sessions you don’t know what the weather will be like or who will turn up so you have to be able to adapt to situations.”
Refreshments will be available at all the Push The Boat Out events, with a host of shoreside activities and entertainment for the whole family to enjoy too. Find all the details for your nearest Push The Boat Out venue at www.rya.org.uk/ptbo
Almost 400 venues across the UK are inviting people to Push The Boat Out in May. Over 22,000 people regularly go along to their local sailing club every month across the Midlands, sailing small sailboats or windsurfing.
Manor Park SC’s Josie Crane is urging South Staffs to Push The Boat Out in May - https://www.dropbox.com/s/5yi84hmj2yb236y/JosieCrane_campamerica_jetty.jpg
For more information:
RYA Midlands Regional Communicator
Tel: 07837 707630