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Dolphins & Sharks

Come and join us on the water for an evening of fun sailing for all abilities from 6 years and up!  Borrow club boats or bring your own.  Free for all BYC cadets members.

We have made a few changes this year to make it even more fun and allow for more time on the water. The sessions will now take place on a Friday evening (no homework or school the next day!) starting on Friday 5th May and continuing right through the summer holidays.

Dolphins and Sharks will be split into two groups.  Sharks must be able to helm a boat on their own. As there will be rescue out all evening, Cadet Toppers and Lasers wanting to train can sail during the Sharks session.

Dolphins meet at 5.30 and on the water 6 – 7pm

Sharks meet at 6.30 and on the water 7 – 8pm

BBQs will be lit and the bar will be open!

2017 Dates  (Friday evenings)

Fri 28th April PB Parents Briefing
Fri 5th May DS1 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm
Fri 12th May DS2 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm
Fri 19th May DS3 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm
Fri 26th May DS4 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm
Fri 2nd June DS5 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm
Fri 9th June DS6 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm
Fri 16th June DS7 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm
Fri 23rd June DS8 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm
Fri 30th June DS9 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm
Fri 7th July DS10 Dolphins ready to sail @ 6pm, Sharks @ 7pm

(Dolphins & Sharks will continue on Friday evenings from 7th July as part of Social Sailing)

Further Information

DOLPHINS AND SHARKS 2017 These sessions are provided to give cadets members a chance to get on the water with safety boats present. Dolphins and Sharks is not a sailing course (e.g. RYA Stage 1) but more like a member’s get-together on the water, giving cadets the chance to develop their confidence on the water and have fun at the same time. We also hope that will the Dolphins and Sharks will take away some new knowledge of the sea and appreciation for our natural environment. Sharks is also an ideal time for Cadet Topper and Laser sailors to train on the water while there is rescue available.

Registrations for the 2017 Dolphins and Sharks has now opened. Make sure you have your membership updated!

Cost: This program is free for Cadet members. Membership is required under the Club insurance to use the Clubs boats outside a RYA Training course. Please note cadet membership is not discounted through the year until end July – full years membership fee applies.

Age Groups: Dolphins from 6 years old.  Sharks must be able to helm a boat on their own. More experienced sailors may be offered facilitated race coaching if there is enough interest.

Times and Dates:  Once registered you can turn up to the Friday sessions. All sessions will be weather dependent. Whether the session is on or not will be posted on the BYC website (news section) at or before 4pm on the day of the session. If there is no cancellation post up you can assume it will be on (unless the weather changes suddenly). Dolphins 5.30pm Arrival and Signing in. Parent volunteers launch safety boats, supervise and rig boats, and manage clothing allocation, 5.45pm Briefing, 6.00pm Launch Sailing Session Afloat 7pm Finish.  Sharks 6.30pm Arrival and Signing in, 6.45 Briefing, 7pm Launch.

The Team: The team running the sessions are you…parent and guardian volunteers as well as a few cadet volunteers. Some RYA instructors from the club will volunteer their time too but as many of the instructors are doing exams in the summer term, the number of instructors is limited. One parent/guardian per family must help out.   The motto is ” if you don’t come, don’t send your kids”  

Boats: Boats used will be the BYC Club Picos, Fevas and Bahias. (we have 14 boats in total which can hold up to 33 people altogether at once) and members can also use their own boats.  Safety boats will be ribs and yaks. Only those qualified to a minimum of RYA Powerboat Level 2 will be allowed to drive these, however, we welcome crew if parents would like to jump onboard. We encourage all drivers to do their Safety Boat course and we offer discounted rates to Dolphins parents to get this qualification. Please ask for details.

Sailing Skills (parents): You don’t need to be a sailor but it helps. If you are keen to learn sailing or powerboating, please book onto these through the website on for our list of adult courses throughout the summer.

Gear: The Dolphins and Sharks will be provided with wet-suits, spray jackets and buoyancy aids. These are stored in the drying room. There will be a volunteers on drying room duty as well as changing room duty each night. Clothing needs to be hung up on the rails before moved to the drying room. As there is a limited number, Dolphins are encouraged to purchase their own so that we can offer more opportunities and also you are guaranteed one that fits. Hats, booties and gloves are highly recommended. Neoprene is usually best on the water. You can get these at Surf Mountain on Main Street with the discount card – mention your BYC membership if you don’t yet have one. Also Bosun Bobs on High Street or McCready Sailboats in Holywood are good places to get gear. You may also be able to purchase second hand off older cadet members or at boat jumbles. Long hair should be tied back and pony-tails should be low or covered with a hat.

Signing in and out: Please sign your child in at the start of the session, by ensuring their name is ticked off on the sign in sheet and that they are allocated to a boat. Each child signing in will get a stamp on their hand. Please let one of the team know after that the child has left. There will be a parent from the shore list above doing the signing in and out.

Launching and Landing: Parent volunteers will help with the boats. However, Dolphins and Sharks are expected to help put away the boats they sail in.

Food and Drinks: There will No food provided this year to allow the sailing sessions to last longer. Parents can bring food along to eat in the Jubilee Room or on patio area. BBQ’s will be organised by parents weather dependent.  The bar will be open!

Showers:  Please advise your child that the shower is a) to warm up b) to rinse salt off the body and hair and c) to rinse the BYC clothing. Please discourage long shampooing and conditioning sessions in the showers so that hot water is available for everyone. There will be 40 + people using the club over the sessions. Cadets need to help with their boats before being dismissed  to the showers.

Child Protection: We encourage all parents and volunteers to get an Enhanced Access NI check done.  The checks are free of charge  to all volunteers and can now be done online here.  You will first need a PIN number from our Access NI coordinator Elaine Taylor.  More guidance from the RYA can be found here. Our Child Protection policy can be found here.

Photographs: We are always keen to get some photos in the Spectator as well as put some on the club website or facebook page. This saves sending pictures to 100+ people individually. Please contact us as soon as possible if you’ve a problem with this. Please do not ask for photos to be emailed individually.

Further communications: PLEASE READ THE NEWSLETTER each week and check the website regularly.    

Other activities for Cadets : Racing on Tuesdays and Sundays –  this is open to any cadet member. Other cadet events – please keep an eye on here and in the weekly news for details Royal Yachting Association Sailing Courses – these can be booked online.

DOLPHINS AND SHARKS Health and Safety Notice    (same for 2017)