About the blackwater sailing club
The Blackwater Sailing Club is one of the leading sailing clubs on the East Coast, situated on the tidal Blackwater Estuary two miles downstream from Maldon, Essex. The Club is easily accessible, being just 30 minutes’ drive from the M25. The clubhouse and facilities are some of the best in the country having benefited from significant investment by the members over one hundred years.
The Club is owned and run by its members which encourages an informal and friendly self-help ethos, where volunteer members organise everything from Club administration, social events, race organisation, facilities management – and even gardening!
The clubhouse Upper Deck enjoys extensive views of the river for those who simply wish to watch the activity on the water. The changing rooms can accommodate over 100 people and we have a Members' galley where members can prepare their own hot drinks and meals.
There are a range of Club Social Events throughout the year including formal and informal dinners, midweek lunches, barbeques, quiz nights, suppers, talks, cruising seminars etc.
The Club employs a full time steward, who helps members with the launching and recovery of cruisers. Members enjoy the use of a large workshop with light and power, a high-pressure wash down, a mast crane, boat hoist and a tractor for boat movement.
We have winter parking for over 100 cruisers and 500 dinghies on-site with both electric power and water available.
We are an active, family‑focused Club of over 1000 members with both cruiser and dinghy sailing. Our Cadet Section offers training, racing and social events for 8 to 18 year olds, culminating in an annual Cadet Week in the summer holidays which regularly attracts over 150 participants.
Dinghy and cruiser racing is held on Saturdays & Sundays (tide permitting), with special events on bank holidays and a Club Week and Regatta in August. Our cruiser racers support the local clubs’ joint racing (BJRC) programme with all‑day races down river. Current popular dinghy classes include Fireballs, MPS, Lasers, Blazes, Wayfarers, Toppers, Optimists, Fevas and Sprites (the Club's own class). Safety cover is provided during organised Club racing. All regular racers are expected to do a minimum of 2 Race Box and/or Patrol Boat Duties per year.
We have a large Cruiser membership with our own moorings and facilities to launch and haul out boats up to 30 feet LOA / 6 tons gross. The Cruising section organises cruises throughout the season both around the Blackwater and further afield.
We have a thriving all year round Friday morning ‘Adult Sailing group’ and a summer Tuesday evening group where both experienced and novice sailors can develop skills and meet other members.
The Club owns a large freshwater lake where members can learn to sail, along with a purpose-built classroom for dry-land instruction. These are both used during our Cadet training activities. We also maintain a number of club boats for members to borrow and try out before investing in their own.
Club facilities are accessible by members at all times using a security code. Launching from the Club is possible for around 3 hours either side of high water, enabling either a same tide or all day sails. Of course the Club lake is available at any time and is a popular spot for a family BBQ or picnic.
Our RYA Sailing School offers training to Club Members only. Teaching is carried out by our own volunteer members who are themselves RYA qualified instructors. We cover both dinghy sailing and powerboat training. Cadets enjoy special novice training weekends early in the season, preparing them for Cadet Week and Club’s own Cadet Badge. This can progress into the RYA sailing qualifications during Cadet Week and many Cadets later progress to Dinghy Instructor certification, becoming our next volunteer instructors .
We welcome enquiries and visits from prospective new members throughout the year. Membership details can be found under the Join Us, or simply turn up and ask about membership at the clubhouse
We'd love to show you around!