It was a healthy turn out for LYC’s 2023 AGM, with 50 members attending both in person and through zoom.
The AGM was chaired by Nick Ledingham, who introduced Commodore Paul Hampson to make his final report, as his three year tenure came to a close. Paul reflected on a year that was full of races both locally and at regattas across the UK and Ireland, as well as a selection of cruises across the UK. He remarked on how the dinghy section of the club has grown this year, continuing to become a more inclusive part of club life, as well as the club as a whole growing in its inclusivity, shunning the formation of cliques.
Paul then read the President’s report on behalf of Sir Robin Knox Johnston. Sir Robin told a tale to members about cruising in the Caribbean this year, which was not quite smooth sailing due to a pod of Orcas destroying his rudder! He gave warning to all members on this risk when sailing further south and to seek advice on avoiding this situation if venturing that way. Perhaps not the biggest risk on the Mersey luckily! Sir Robin wished members an enjoyable, active and Orca free season in 2023.
Vice Commodore, Susie Quinn, gave her report and firstly thanked members of the sailing committee for their support and hard work over the last 3 years during her time as Vice Commodore. She reflected on the unprecedented challenges the sailing committee faced during the pandemic and how through their enthusiasm and effort, managed to safely continue racing at LYC. She was pleased to announce we are not just back to normal now but better than ever! There was an excellent turn out for races such as the 101st Isle of Mann Race, Commodore’s Cup, Novice Series, and Ladies Series. The Liverpool Bay Series has been restarted and although turn out has been small so far, Susie is hoping that offshore racing will grow in popularity this season.
Susie reported that the Dinghy section has had a very successful year with an expanded and very successful Topper Challenge Series, with the club also purchasing a GP14 this year (with 2 more planned to follow). Cruising has taken place to Conwy and Piel Island and there is an increased selection of cruises planned for this year. She is also looking forward to the club’s participation in the River Mersey Festival at Albert Dock this summer.
Nichola Murphy delivered her report as Rear Commodore, firstly thanking committee and club members for their support over the last year and ensuring that social events were lively! She reported on a very successful Annual Dinner in 2022 at the Hilton Hotel, with final planning underway to repeat this for 2o23. Nichola and the house committee have been incredibly successful in fund raising in the last year, with another plethora of prizes on offer at this year’s Annual Dinner, including a helicopter ride over Liverpool which will be auctioned on the night!
Monthly quiz nights have continued to be very successful at Liverpool Marina, with thanks to quiz master Meryl. There have also been a variety of socials such as salsa dancing, evening talks, meals out and the Commodore’s ‘Sherry and Mince Pie Night’. There has been social events with local sailing clubs such as Royal Mersey Yacht Club, a snooker match with Wallasey Yacht Club and we were welcomed by Douglas Bay Yacht Club for food and drinks following the Isle of Mann Race. Nichola was also pleased to see so much camaraderie and banter in the bar after races, apparently every race is also a social event! Nichola encouraged next year’s Rear Commodore to continue expanding on the relationships she has begun building with kindred clubs. She wished the House Committee good luck with the next year and hopes LYC members will continue to suggest event ideas and turn out in numbers to socialise.
The Treasurers report has been shared via email with club members and was summarised by Hon. Sec Richard Campbell in the absence of Alison Raynes. Richard then presented his report and attendees voted through minor changes to club by-laws.
A vote was held to approve the laying of club moorings on the west side of the Mersey near Wallasey, as previous moorings have been lost. The moorings were approved and will provide members with a safe and convenient place to await lock access and will be maintained for at least the next four years.
Votes took place to approve the next year’s flag officers and management committee:
Commodore – Susie Quinn
Vice Commodore – Nichola Murphy
Rear Commodore – Andrea Phillips
Hon. Treasurer – Alison Raynes
Hon. Secretary – Richard Campbell
Membership Secretary – Ian Butler
General Member – Matt Dennies
General Member – Trevor Jenkins
General Member – Jan Anderton
General Member – Richard Mann
General Member – Heather Shilliday
An important note must be made that this is the first time in LYC’s history that all three flag officers have been female, a testament to the inclusivity of our club.
Finally, Alastair Soane reported to members that he is leaving Merseyside behind to move to the south of England. Alastair reminded members of the pivotal role that LYC played in helping Sir Robin Knox Johnston secure the start of the 2002 Clipper Race in Liverpool. Unfortunately the scheduled start date saw a terrible storm hit Liverpool, so the start was delayed until the next day, when the Clippers were seen off by a crowd of over 100,000 lining the banks of the Mersey! As a parting gift, Alastair very kindly donated to LYC a shell fired as the winning boat crossed the line of the 2007-2008 Clipper Race, thank you Alastair and LYC wishes you all the best in the next chapter of your life.