Message from the Commodore and Committee - Feb 2021



Grab a cup (or glass) of your favourite tipple….. This might take a little while!

Thought I would take the chance to send out a wee update to let you know what is happening regarding LESC.

First and foremost I hope everyone is well and managing to get through these difficult times. I know for myself that this seems to have been a long winter what with all the restrictions that both Covid and the weather have brought. Let’s hope that things brighten (and warm) up a bit and with the coming of the vaccine we see some light at the end of the tunnel. What I do take encouragement from is that we are seeing lighter mornings and brighter evenings which is always a welcome sign that spring is coming!

We held our first (virtual) committee meeting of 2021 this past week with the primary aim of looking at the bigger picture for LESC for 2021. We obviously talked a fair bit about the current situation and what that might mean to us but in reality we just have to wait to see how things develop regarding what we are allowed to do.
I think that we are looking at a situation similar to last year where (hopefully) we will be allowed to get out and about and enjoy our time at Loch Earn. I am sure we will face the same or very similar restrictions regarding our interactions with continued social distancing and limited numbers allowed to meet in groups but we will just have to wait and see. While it certainly wasn’t normal, it seemed to work out ok last year so if nothing else we know that when we are given the go ahead by the relevant bodies we can open up the club and folks will be able to get out on the water.

We did make some strategic decisions about the forthcoming season though, primarily to do with the major events we host. When we can, we plan to hold a First Fling but it will be club members only. We have decided that we will not run the Brown Cup or host the RYA Club Championship – even if these events are allowed to happen we don’t think it is right to have lots of people at the club. We are considering having some visitors for the Final Fling with the possibility of the Flying Fifteen Scottish Championships and the Enterprise Travellers coming along. This is still very much at the provisional stage though given the nature of the pandemic.

I have attached a Newsletter from Colin Tait our Sailing Secretary which gives you a more in depth look at how we see the season running. If there is sufficient interest we will host a virtual meeting where club members can ask more about the season and we can discuss points raised. Please let us know if this would be of interest.

Another significant decision we looked at is the adoption of the National Handicap for Cruisers (NHC) Scheme to replace Portsmouth Yardstick (PY) as our handicapping system for the Keel boat fleet. Colin has spent a considerable amount of time looking into this over the past year or so, mostly prompted by the fact that the RYA no longer supports the PY system for Keel boats. This means we are running handicaps that are nearly 10 years out of date. In the Newsletter Colin explains the concept of NHC in more detail and also attached for those that are interested are the current baseline NHC numbers for the Keel boats at the club. For those who are really interested I have also attached the RYA calculations for NHC – thankfully this is all done by a computer programme! Can I ask that if you have a Keel boat you check the list out and update us with sail numbers, boat names, crew names etc, this will help update our records.

What we ask is that those folks who race in the keel boat fleet take a good look at the NHC scheme and get familiar with the basic concepts, we then plan to hold a virtual consultation meeting where those that are interested can ask questions and we can discuss how we see this operating.

The bottom line is we need to do something to update our way of handicapping keel boats and this being the RYA scheme seems to be the most sensible one to adopt.

On other matters, as I understand it the club is holding up ok under the weather. A couple of our local members keep me posted on anything that is happening.

At the recommendation of our tree surgeons we have had some remedial tree work completed over the winter, this is necessary to comply with our insurance requirements. We have replanted trees to replace the ones taken out so that the site will continue to have a nice woodland feel to it. We have also had some works done to the trailer park which has extended it a little so that we can continue getting things more organised there. The abandoned Achilles has finally left for pastures new which is great and in general the site is getting clear of unwanted or unclaimed boats, trailers etc – we plan to continue with this during this coming season.

Onto club boats, we have sold the white work boat and acquired a ‘new to us’ RIB which we feel will be a much more useful. ‘Pupshark’ as it is known belonged to Cramond Boat Club and we have been fortunate to get a loan of the boat for our training week for the past several years. Cramond upgraded to a larger RIB and gave us first refusal at a very reasonable price. Basically the changeover has cost us almost nothing and we now have a good, sound RIB with a fairly new Yamaha outboard.

Finally, we are looking at ways of encouraging more people out onto the water and in particular more dinghy sailors. To this end I thank Martin Wilkie who has volunteered (well you know…) to become our Dinghy Fleet Captain and he, along with Andy McKeown are looking at ways to develop the dinghy fleet – more of this to come. Thanks to Martin and Andy for getting involved and I look forward to seeing more folks out sailing and racing in dinghies in 2021. The final attachment to this email is a list of the dinghies in the club, again I would ask you all to have a look at the list and give us an update on sail numbers, boat name and crew please.

On a really positive note to finish, we have 5 or 6 families (or individuals) who have applied to join the club which I think is fabulous given the current climate. Their applications will be processed in due course but I am sure we will have new faces to get to know in 2021.

Can I ask that you respond to any of the above points by Wednesday 24 February so that we can set up suitable Zoom meetings to discuss either the season ahead or the NHC handicapping system. This will allow things to progress at our next committee meeting scheduled for early March.


Send replies to

Folks, if you have got this far, thank you for taking the time to read it all and I look forward to seeing you all at the club in 2021.



John Best



4 Attachments

LESC Sailing Secretary 2021 Newsletter 1[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [121.7 KB]
ResultsProgrammeCalculations - NHC.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [244.4 KB]
HandicapHistory Dinghies.xlsx
Microsoft Excel sheet [10.8 KB]
LESC 2021 Keelboat initial NHC number - [...]
Microsoft Excel sheet [10.8 KB]

Annual General Meeting 2020

The AGM this year was held by a Zoom meeting at 2pm on Sunday 29th November. Members can access full details by clicking here

Tarken Burn & bridge works at LESC (Sept - Oct 2020)

Bear Scotland have undertaken some maintenance work on the foundations of the A85 road bridge over the Tarken burn. Very luckily for LESC they have as part of these works undertaken some bank repairs below the road bridge. The JLC guys have filled bio degradeable bags with a dry cement mix and pinned them together with rods and put boulders they brought on site in front of them to protect them till they harden. They also temporarily diverted the water to lay concrete on the bed of the river under the bridge - no mean task!  We all wondered what the large blue plastic pipes were for!  The guys worked hard and they deserve a big thank you from us all!

Lochearnhead Race Saturday, 8th August 2020 


The Lochearnhead race successfully opened the racing season at the Club.


It was a lovely sunny day with light airs.  Colin and Mandy Tait snuck away from the fleet in their Tasar to win the race overall! Congratulations to them both.

The 49er took line honours on their maiden sail and race so a well done to them too.


A big thank you to our OODs - Desiree and Leigh and also the three rescue boat crews who were required to tow a few boats home as the wind died during the Crew's race on the return trip.

 Loch Earn Sailing Club                                                                  - Covid 19 Update  (current) 

Since we are in Level 4 of the Covid 19 pandemic regulations, club members are requested to adhere to the current LESC and Governments guidance e.g. local members only,outdoors - chatting, socially distanced. A max of 2 people from two households only. 

For the current camping & caravan rules or to make a booking please contact the Caravan Convenor, Tommy Taylor or while he is offshore, the Secretatry, Mandy Tait by emailing the Committee on 

The Vision

To be the club where members love to be, valuing the good times spent both on and off the water"

D Orr, Commodore 25th November 2018.

Aerial View of Loch Earn Sailing Club

Have you ever wondered what Loch Earn Sailing Club looks like from the air? Club member Craig Pagett is a professional photographer and used a drone to capture the voyage to St Fillans sweetie shop at the end of Training Week. You can view the video by clicking here. Thanks Craig!

Newsletter from the Sailing Secretary

LESC Sailing Newsletter 1 2019.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [7.5 MB]