top of page

RNCYC Covid Sailing Plans

Update from RYA - January 2021

To RYA affiliated Clubs and Recognised Training Centres

It would have been nice to be able to be contacting you on more favourable news so early in the New Year but alas Covid has other plans for us right now.  Nonetheless there is reason to be optimistic for the near future so may I wish you all a healthy and active year to come.

From Tuesday 5 January, mainland Scotland moved from Level 4 to a Temporary Lockdown, with new guidance to stay at home except for essential purposes. Some islands will remain at Level 3.

In light of this, the RYA Scotland Team have once again revised our guidance with a short overlay to the existing documentation to cover the immediate changes and their implications. 

Links for advice for current guidance and support, as well as recreational boating in the UK and abroad are below:

Current Guidance in Scotland

UK Guidance including Wales and Northern Ireland

Coronavirus ( Covid-19) Support and Resources


Let’s be really clear – as limited as it is for now, it is still possible to go boating as a form of exercise and even though this may not be a first choice through the winter months, this is an important position for our chosen activity.  Many have seen their recreational choices stopped completely.

That said we must remember we are in the grip of a pandemic that has become significantly worse in recent weeks.  Travel is severely restricted by law and you may only travel to your boat if it is kept in the same local authority area you live in.

The overriding message for Scotland’s boating community is to ‘Stay at Home’ wherever possible and we must all do our bit to stop the spread of the virus. 

While it is possible for facility providers such as Clubs, Training Centres, Marinas and Boatyards to open to allow access for owners, they will each make their own decisions on whether or not they open their doors or gates to people in the locality. 

We ask everyone to respect that facility providers have no obligation to open and you may find access to your boat restricted for the time being.  We all hope this will be temporary and many facilities are offering to do key checks and even maintenance to help you out.

If you are fortunate enough to live in an area within which you are able to get to your boat, please consider if you can help out someone else who cannot travel, by checking their boat for them.

Importantly in this lockdown, you may travel within your local authority area to go boating as your form of exercise or for essential maintenance on your boat. For the time being essential maintenance is work which if not undertaken would cause failure or become an imminent safety issue and we suggest examples in the guidance. 

However, travel for essential maintenance should not be used as a pretext to spend the day aboard ‘pottering’ or for a weekend away. You should not stay longer than the length of time required to undertake essential maintenance.

I do hope we continue to see some hardy souls getting a float and that your maintenance plans albeit delayed a bit, are not overly affected.

If you have any queries about this most recent guidance please do get in touch with the RYA Scotland Team.

Update 15th October 2020


Now the sailing season is over some of our previous information (shown below) is not currently relevant. Also, there is now a regional approach to Covid. The club is following the guidance of the RYA Scotland explained in it's Return to Boating information.

Click here for details.

Phase 1


  • SOCIAL DISTANCING - Travel: < 5 miles - “Meeting up with another household outdoors, in small numbers (max 8), including in gardens, but with physical distancing required”

Boat Park

  • Can be used by people <5 miles from the club - Spread boats out to allow social distancing


  • No access - Workplaces resuming in later phases can undertake preparatory work on physical distancing and hygiene measures.


  • Now available - contact club for details. - Members must fit pennants - Members must provide own tenders

Pier, Launch and RIBs

  • Launch can be prepared for phase 2. - Demonstrate social distance area - Ribs can be prepared for later phases, or as launch alternative

Recreational Sailing​​

  • Must be within households - Members must live local (< 5 miles) - Be conservative: Sail within your own ability and not likely to strain emergency services - Must return to point of departure - Using own equipment/PPE/yacht


Cadet and other training

  • None permitted


  • None permitted - No organised racing, events or competitions at this time – in effect free sailing only

Phase 2


  • Social distancing (2m) still applies. Travel distance limit relaxed, please note any local restrictions You may meet outside with people from up to two other households (including an ‘extended household’) per day but the total number of people meeting must not be more than 8. Rules for 0-11 year olds and 12-17 year olds have been relaxed; see Return to boating doc. above “Meeting others is limited”

Boat Park

  • Can be used. Please respect others and observe social distancing. Wipe down any equipment you touch, which is not yours.


  • Not permitted.


  • Available- contact club for details. Overnight stays at anchor and on moorings are now permitted.

  • Before embarking on your journey check local restrictions with mooring owners/associations/harbour masters.#Respect the destination. Plan ahead; be considerate on arrival and think of the locals. Contact them in advance of your trip.

Pier, Launch and RIBs

  • Use under social distancing. Please bring appropriate equipment including face masks and hand sanitiser.

Recreational Sailing​​

  • Individuals should sail singly or as a crew with members of their household group. If physical distancing can be maintained, you may sail with up to two other households on a boat and with no more than eight people.

  • Participants are encouraged to use their own personal equipment during this phase, or to have equipment allocated to them for exclusive use during a set period. This equipment should be cleaned appropriately before being allocated to another user.

  • Participants must only take to the water in conditions well within their ability and which assume a self-sufficient approach to their activity.Check your equipment thoroughly, particularly engines and fuel, as they may not have been used for some time. Consider using a device to keep in touch such as RYA SafeTRX on a mobile or carry a VHF and notifying someone ashore of your intended activity, anticipated time afloat and calling them when you are back ashore safely.

​Cadet and other training

  • Waiting for further RYA advice. It is our intention to organise the First Aid course cancelled in March asap and to review cadet training.


  • Competitions should only be undertaken locally and informally at your own club where household, physical distancing and hygiene measures are in place. 

Phase 4


  • SOCIAL DISTANCING EASED SUBJECT TO ADVICE - Public transport operates normally - “Further relaxation on restrictions on gatherings” - “Further relaxation of restrictions on live events in line with public health advice.”

Boat Park

  • Can be used by non-"local" people.


  • Permitted, subject to physical distancing and increased hygiene routines.


  • Available - contact club for details.

Pier, Launch and RIBs

  • Use under social distancing.

Recreational Sailing​​

  • Waiting for further RYA guidance.

​Cadet and other training


  • Waiting for advice, e.g. GSS North Clyde Regatta, 707s, Ceilidh Cup Match Racing - Subject to Risk assessment.

From the Commodore

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

5th March 2020


I am sure that you are aware of the situation regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) which remains dynamic, changing almost by the day.
The Flag Officers are keeping the issue under review and wished to reassure members of the actions that are being taken by the Club. 

This is based on the latest advice issued from the Department of Health and Social Care, which can be found at:

Reducing the risk
In order to help in reducing the risk of spreading the virus, we are repeating the advice given to the public and ask that all members and staff observe the general principles we can all follow to help prevent the spread of a respiratory virus, including

Washing hands often with soap and water or with an alcohol sanitiser.

Covering a cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throwing the tissue in the bin

People who are unwell should stay at home and not visit the clubhouse, especially if they are showing symptoms of the virus. Symptoms of the infection include:

  • A cough

  • Difficulty in breathing

  • Fever

  • Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands


Actions by the Club
If, whilst in the clubhouse, any member or guest starts to feel unwell, showing any of the above symptoms, please advise a member of staff who will take the individual to an isolated area in the clubhouse until medical assistance arrives.
In terms of specific measures, the Club is taking we have antibacterial hand wash & hand sanitiser available around the clubhouse for members and guests to use. We will also be cleaning the most touched areas in the clubhouse with disinfectant frequently.

Future Club events
We will continue to monitor the situation and will review all the planned Club events scheduled for the coming months.   We intend that Club events go ahead as scheduled; however, we have to take decisions that are in the best interests of the members and staff.
Any such decisions regarding events will be communicated to members as far in advance as possible.


Your understanding during this uncertain and challenging time is very much appreciated.


David Whitham

Commodore RNCYC


bottom of page