The Princess Royal presented the awards last week, at the 2016 Royal Yachting Association’s Volunteer awards. Around forty volunteers received awards, including a Lifetime Achievement Award for Rob Watson of Ullswater Yacht Club. Rob has been with the club for over forty years and during that time has held many offices including secretary, vice-commodore and commodore, he is currently treasurer.
Watson said: “I was most surprised to be singled out and very honoured to receive the award. This only happened because of the support I have received over the past 40 years from my wife Judith and the commitment and enthusiasm of so many members who have helped us and worked with me in various roles at UYC. I offer my sincere thanks to them all and to those who nominated me for the award.”
When the Princess Royal presented the award to Rob, she also commented on the achievements of the yacht club. This was both with work that the volunteers did along with many others in the Lake District clearing up after the severe floods, and their work promoting sailing as a hobby. The club’s “I am TeamGB” day broke the record for the most number of taster sessions booked in a single day.
After being presented with the award, Tom got a chance to chat with the Princess, and he was impressed with both her keen knowledge of sailing and her knowledge of all the clubs large and small that were affiliated to the RYA. The Royal Yachting Association is not the only water based organisation the Princess has links to, she is also Master of the Corporation of Trinity House.
The Royal Yachting Association works hard through many local groups around Great Britain to promote and protect safe, successful and rewarding British boating. This covers everything from a novice who has an interest in trying out sailing to our Olympic and Paralympic squads. Also from an individual dinghy or jet-ski, through to a large motor cruiser, racing yacht or sixty-nine-foot canal boat.