Grimsby Yacht Club Formed. August 20th at an inaugural meeting at the Royal Dock harbourmasters Office.
Frank Barrass, (Hon Secretary), Mrs Vi Dunkley (Hon Treasurer), Dai Jones, (Sailing Secretary)
Club Logo Designed, (Dock Tower and Seagull Lettering G.Y.C.
The first Commodore was the Grimsby Harbour Master, Captain Jack Morton.
Minesweeping Scow (ex R.N.) obtained, sited at 'Winnipeg', and fitted out as a floating clubhouse.
15 'Grimsby One Designs', (12ft single lugsail rig), designed and built by Pearsons of Hull arrived. These were soon joined by Snipes, Meggies, National 12's, Fireflies and similar designs of the time.
A season of handicap racing was organised in the Alexandra Dock.
Among the early cruisers at theis time were 'Taffy 2' (Dai Jones), 'Away' (Aubrey Gibson), a 6 Metre 'Felise' and 'Lady Nancy' (Sammy Banks). Also power boats 'Seagull' (N. Barnes), Nomad (Alf Hogg), And 'Redwing' (F. Goodland)
An experimental series of races was held off Cleethorpes and discussions opened with the Cleethorpes Council for an allocated dinghy park and changing facilities on the promenade at the old swimming baths.
These facilities were offered and a summer programme including the first open regatta was staged off the beach.
As a result of this co-operation, and as a courtesy to the Cleethorpes Council, the club changes from Grimsby Yacht Club to Grimsby & Cleethorpes Yacht Club (G.C.Y.C)
At this first regatta, a Royal Navy Guardship, HMS Annet was in attendance and their ships boat joined in. Furthermore, a P.A. system was set up on Ross castle and a commentary was broadcast to the spectators on the Prom.
General expansion of members and boats including the first of the 'homebuilds', Graduates and G.P. 14's
Amongst the early builders were Dai Jones, George Beckitt and Aubrey Gibson.
Most G.O.Ds now converted to bermudan sloops with a short bowsprit.
The 'Great January Flood'. Serious damage to the boats in Doig's Creek. Club dinghies assisted in rescue and salvage of the damaged boats.
The G.P. 14s gained in numbers sufficient for class racing.
Ex seine netter 'White Night' acquired and fitted out to replace the minesweeping scow as a clubhouse. Club dinghies and members act as escorts for the Humber Swim.
Humber Swim Escorts. Cleethorpes dinghy facilities extended and improved.
Club reconstitutes into a 'Company Limited by Guarantee'. This to limit individual members financial liability to £1 in the vent of the club folding under massive debts.
Premises No 3 Kingsway bought privately by a consortium of members and offered to the club on a tenancy (later bought outright)
Kingsway premises (much neglected) improved by working parties, converting the ground floor into a bar room, changing rooms and a dinghy park out the back.
Albacore class dinghies appear to the racing scene in serious numbers.
Class racing now for G.P. 14s and Albacores. Handicap racing for the remaining 'menagerie'
Working parties over to Spurn to dismantle ex Army site huts and re-erect them at 'Winnipeg' to replace the deteriorating 'White Night' as our docks clubhouse.
Recent increases in powerboat owning Membership.
Now 14 cruisers (power and sail) and 47 dinghies.
Enterprise racing dinghies appeared on the scene and quickly gained in numbers.
Dinghy handicap racing discontinued, class racing now for G.P.s, Albacores and Enterprises.
This class racing inevitably led to improvements in the standards of racing and led ultimately to the great successes of our members in the major National and International events of the later years.
Further influx of sailing cruisers led to the formation of the Cruiser Section with the appointment of the first Rear Commodore Cruisers (Derry Watt), the Cruiser Secretary (Mike Hayward) and sub committee. This led to cruiser events such as the informal races to Bridlington and Wells and a 'feeder race' to Brough H.Y.C. prior to their very popular Grimsby Race.
More intrepid owners made thier first North Sea crossings, 'Aina' (Vin Draper) to Ostend, 'Gipsy' ( Geoff Peers) to Den Helder and the Ijselmere, and 'Mignonette (Paul Haig) to Ijmuiden and Amsterdam. Many others extended this, including 'Grayling' (Stewart Somerscales), being the first into the baltic in 1964.
These were the formative years of the club, beyond which our dinghy racers improved their skills and our cruiser owners expanded their horizons.
In 1965 Reg Boot became Commodore. At this time the club house which served the dinghy section White Knight was lost because the site was required by ABP for the construction of the car ferry terminal in Alexandra dock.
Negotiations with ABP resulted in the club being offered the site of the present clubhouse. A prefab was erected, a Slipway built and a whole winter was spent by members working on the site. Most importantly, Peter Murdock, the docks manager at the time, offered the club a deal whereby the club could pay one lump sum each year to cover mooring, quayside and locking in and out.
Alec Wilkinson was the next Commodore. The club continued to operate from two sites and he was instrumental in modernising the clubhouse at No. 3 Kingsway, Cleethorpes. Throughout the summer months dinghy racing continued from here and club members won more national and international events.
By the time John Vergetee follows Alec there were 51 cruisers moored in the Alexandra dock and keen racing took place on a regular basis. Two members took part in trans Atlantic races which encourage several other members to make long trips over the “pond”.
During John Keenans term as Commodore during 1977 to 1979 the news reached the club that a flyover was to be built over the dock as part of the reconstruction of the A180. Complex negotiations ensued with Humberside County Council and ABP which lasted several years. Alternative moorings were provided on the North side of the dock and Humberside County Council provided the finger mooring which are in use today. A further result was that after more negotiations the main clubhouse was moved to its present location. For many years many members of the club had felt that we needed our headquarters on the dock. With the completion of the flyover , ABP made the offer of an extended lease plus the value of No3 Kingsway. This led to the building of the present clubhouse which was opened by the Earl of Yarborough on 88 1987
Grateful thanks go John Keenan and Geoff Peers for the great assistance in putting together this brief record of the early years of the club.