I've been sitting in the background here, reading these posts, but finally thought i'd pipe up and say my bit...
Although I haven't been around kitesurfing as long as some people I know around hunstanton, (this is my 3rd summer), I'd like to feel that I've a fair understanding of the area.
If i go back to the beginning of the thread, there are several issues I would like to comment on. Looking through the nice shiny 'magazine' rob has put together, I'm left wondering as to the benefits of the 'club' (I will comment at this point that i'm a member of the sailing club, so have to draw comparison with the benefits of that - sorry)
so here we go,
CBK club rash vest
- can't say I've ever seen anyone out in one... Vs sailing club - I tend to know active members by sight, so recognise them without the need of a rash vest.
- yep, get that as well from some local shops as part of membership / friendship through the club.
(you have got me there), but with the array of local beaches, I've never felt the need to go travelling that far to find a beach if there is wind.
organised demo days
, again 1 up to cbk, although I guess i've been lucky that the guys as hunstanton watersports and kite-kit have let me borrow stuff to demo.
Access to equipment
- CBK wins again. unless you want to count the half dozen club sailing boats, windsurfers or sups that are available to members at the sailing club.
- I can't actually remember seeing anyone from CBK being on the beach as a designated launcher / lander / first aider.. I'm pretty sure this is where the 'buddy' riding system wins out.
Chill out area
- The sailing club has to win with that one... now the weathers a bit warmer and the bar is open regularly, there have been some pretty good nights at the club with acoustic music, bbqs and the bar, or just chill on the sofa with a coffee watching the sunset and chatting, it all works.
use of the shop to change
- Again the sailing club wins hands down, it has proper changing rooms, toilets and even showers! I've also tried to pop into the shop several times, but as there doesn't seem to be any regular opening hours, and every time i've headed past, the lights are out and nobody is home, i've had to keep going.
moving further past the adverts, and onto the topic of beach guidelines.
I think the insurance issue has been done to death already in this thread, but is seems a bit of a no brainer to me to not have bksa cover... its probably one of the cheapest bits of kit you have, but worth the most if you ever have to rely on it.
where are the marked out areas - again, I've never seen flags or marshalls from CBK on the beaches? I've always stuck to the general area around the sailing club / car park at lestrange, and as long as you are using common sense and plan things a little, I've not seen an issue... I'm prettys sure the best demo day was also set up the cliff side of the RNLI access strip, and not in your designated launch / land zone.
I especially like the last line, and perhaps it could be clarified as a non member of the CBK club... 'Support non-members for launching / landing but no club benefits can be permitted' I've not seen this type of arrangement before... the way i've seen it working on the beach so far is to launch / land / help anyone who needs it if you are close by and able to help regardless of club membership or not- pretty simple really, and I would hope that help would be available if needed and not denied just because I don't have a rash vest on.....
I think the last double page of the 'magazine' brings me nicely onto a post made by ears / rob where you have said
Sometime ago I joined another club and wasn't spoken to once.... the club never contacted me..... there was no emails of events...... there was no "checking" in to see how club members were etc etc.
I would ask you, what have you done with and for that club?
In the last 20 years, i've been a member of several clubs and organisations, and there is one simple observation i've made - "the more you put in, the more you get out" if you don't spend time at the club, get to know people, and make friends, then there is no point being a member of any club. Most clubs are run by volunteers, and it is those people who spend time and effort trying to make things better for the many. If you can do a little bit (maybe an hour here or there when you are waiting for the tide or wind), then everyone benefits. Stay as a loner, and you are the only one that loses out.
Looking at the posts about CBK over the last couple of years, it seems to me that the issue isn't about there being another school / club in the town (there has always been 2 or 3 schools, and a couple of retailers selling kit).. The issue is more about the perceived way that CBK has landed in the town and started to try and dictate how things should work, and has got the backs up of many people ... maybe rob should learn to not say or do anything that is likely to draw fire?