Round-the-world yachtswoman Vicky Ellis is to be guest of honour at an event hosted by Girls For Sail, the UK’s only all-female sailing school, to mark the start of Cowes Week.
Vicky is one of only a handful of women to have led a crew around the world in a yacht race. She skippered a team of 22 amateur crew members in the 11-month-long Clipper 2013-14 event and made history by becoming the first female skipper to win a leg of the race.
Girls For Sail has invited Vicky to the official opening of their new HQ at Shephard’s Wharf Marina on Friday, August 7.
Vicky will attend the celebration rum party and opening from 5pm to 7pm. Girls For Sail founder Annie O’Sullivan hopes women interested in sailing will take the chance to go along to the drinks reception and find out everything they want to know about sailing with an all-girl crew as a pastime or competitive sport.
Award-winning industry expert and Girls For Sail principal Annie is passionate about encouraging women to take part in sailing and wants females of all ages to go along and find out how much the sport has to offer them.
Places are also still available to join one of the Girls For Sail boats and take part in the Cowes Week sailing events. Mentor Annie has backed Sport England’s This Girl Can campaign which supports women to take up the sports and activities they want to pursue and sees this as the perfect opportunity for women to break down the barriers which are holding them back.
Annie said: “Half of all enquiries received by Girls For Sail are from women worried that they are too old to try sailing. I’m looking forward to welcoming Vicky who has achieved so much in the sport, and we’d love women and girls of all ages and from all walks of life to come along to our rum party so that we can give them a flavour of what an amazing experience sailing can offer them, no matter their age or experience.”
“Our new office will also be open all through the day and I hope they will take advantage of this opportunity to drop in and meet our fantastic instructors and chat to some of the ladies who have already learned to sail with us, see round our boats and find out more.
“At Girls For Sail, we believe sailing is one of the most liberating and confidence-inspiring experiences they could ever have – and above all it’s fun!”
Since setting up Girls for Sail in 1999, Annie and her all-female instructors have taught thousands of women to sail, taking them from complete novices to competing in some of the toughest races in the UK and Caribbean.
Research shows that two million fewer women regularly participate in sport or exercise than men, despite three quarters of women between 14 and 40 saying they would like to do more.
Girls For Sail is based at Shepard’s Wharf Marina in Cowes and in St. Lucia in the Caribbean and offers Royal Yachting Association sailing courses, starting from RYA Competent Crew for beginners, right through to Yachtmaster levels.
Women who started out as beginners with Girls For Sail have gone on to take part in world-class regattas, trans-Atlantic passages and events such as Antigua Race Week, and the Atlantic Rally for Cruisers.
Girls For Sail also offers special sessions for mums and daughters, holidays of a lifetime and career break options.
The One Big Sail Day rum party takes place on Friday, August 7, from 5pm to 7pm, at Girls For Sail, Unit D, Shepard’s Wharf Marina, Medina Road, Cowes, Isle of Wight.
Girls For Sail was launched to offer competitively priced sail training holiday and weekend breaks from the firm’s UK and Caribbean sail training bases and exists to give women the opportunity to learn to sail in a supportive and fun environment.
For more information please visit website.
by Lorna Frazer