Somerspirit

We’re excited to have our own sailing dinghy here in Somerset. Check out our photostream on Flickr and Facebook page for our latest news and events. If you’d like to chat, we’re also on Twitter.

Adventure on our doorstep

Dinghy sailing is a fun, adventurous outdoor activity for our girls and young women, and it’s affordable and easy to organise.

Find out what you need to bring, see forms and risk assessments, read our FAQs and book online below.

Did you know you can support Somerspirit at no cost to you when you shop on Amazon?

Our latest news

Plain Sailing 2017

Pride at Somerspirit

We’re celebrating Pride on Saturday 11 June from 1-4pm at Sutton Bingham Sailing Club! Are you joining us? We’re welcoming LGBTQ+ Girlguiding members, friends and allies for an afternoon of sailing, good company, tea and cake! This is a great opportunity for us to celebrate and thank our LGBTQ+ members for the contribution they make … Continue reading Pride at Somerspirit

Photo of dinghies sailing at Durleigh Sailing Club, Bridgwater

Sailing opportunity at Durleigh

10 July 2022 Have you sailed on Somerspirit? Normally based at Sutton Bingham Sailing Club, near Yeovil in South Somerset, we’re taking our Comet Trio to Durleigh Sailing Club, near Bridgwater on Sunday 10 July 2022. This will provide Brownies, Guides and Rangers the opportunity to enjoy sailing in the north of the county. Girls … Continue reading Sailing opportunity at Durleigh

What do we need to bring?

Please bring these items to sail in:

  • Lightweight top and trousers (not denim please!)
  • Lightweight jumper
  • Windproof jacket
  • Towel
  • Trainers – which you don’t mind getting wet – or sailing shoes
  • Flask of hot drink.
  • Packed lunch (if sailing all day)
  • Hair band or hair tie for longer than shoulder length hair
  • Sun block and hat

Please have a complete change of clothes and shoes with you, just in case!

Buoyancy Aids will be provided.

Our risk assessment provides additional guidance for leaders. Please read this carefully.

What about forms and risk assessments?

Leaders are responsible for arranging Information and Consent Forms. Please advise the instructor if any girl has additional needs or medical conditions of which they should be aware.

We have carried out our own Activity Risk Assessment. It includes a number of actions for you to take as Leader. Please review this and identify any additional risks or actions required as appropriate.

The activity leader holds an appropriate RYA qualification, and is a registered volunteer with Girlguiding who has undergone DBS checks.

FAQs

  1. Where is Somerspirit? At Sutton Bingham Sailing Club near Yeovil.
  2. How many girls can fit in the boat? Typically 4 Brownies, 3-4 Guides, 2-3 Rangers at a time.
  3. What happens if the weather is unsuitable? We’ll cancel at the earliest opportunity and rearrange.
  4. Do girls need to be able to swim? No. The consent form asks if participants can swim 50m, but please let your instructor know if anyone is unable to do this so they are aware. Participants will wear buoyancy aids at all times while on the water.
  5. Can Rainbows join in too? Sorry, no. Participants must be 7+. Check out all of the relevant Girlguiding rules.
  6. What is expected of us? Girls will help set up the boat and pack away after sailing. Small groups will take turns to go out in the water. There will be lots of fun!
  7. What facilities are there? There are women’s and men’s changing rooms, toilets and showers. Valuables lockers are available. There is an accessible toilet. Please make us aware if you’re likely to need this so we can check it’s clear.
  8. Food and drink: There is a small kitchenette where leaders can use the kettle and mugs provided. Bring your own tea / coffee / milk, or a donation for club supplies. On some days a volunteer-run “galley” (food service) operates. You are welcome to picnic in the grounds. Barbecues are also fine, but please let us know if you are thinking of bringing one so we can check there are no other events taking place that day.
  9. How accessible is the club and boat? There is parking available adjacent to the clubhouse, ramp access to the clubhouse and an accessible toilet. It’s important to us that sailing is accessible to everyone in guiding, so if you have any specific requirements or questions, please get in touch with out boating adviser (Ash), vice chair (Linda), or inclusion advisor (Eli) to discuss how we can meet your needs.
  10. Is there WiFi? Yes, you’ll find the code in the clubhouse noticeboard. Please only access content which is safe, legal and appropriate, and don’t access anything which might bring Girlguiding into disrepute.
  11. Can we stay locally? Yes, please get in touch with us and we’ll let you know about local halls and campsites.
  12. What can we do while we’re not sailing? There’s a clubhouse with a wet and dry seating area, microwave and kettle, plus outside seating. We’ve updated our Shore Pack in 2022. It now includes a wide range of water safety activities, quizzes and information sheets suitable for all ages. Younger girls may enjoy doing a Unit Meeting Activity in the clubhouse or outside. Older girls and young women often simply enjoy watching their friends sail and experiencing the tranquillity of the environment.
  13. Can our girls make their promise on Somerspirit? Yes, that’s a great idea! The girls really enjoy making their promise out on the water.
  14. Do you have Somerspirit badges? Yes! Everyone who sails on Somerspirit will receive an ‘I’ve been Sailing’ badge!
  15. Can parents stay? Yes, they’re very welcome. There is indoor and outdoor seating, and a self-serve tea / coffee are (honesty box for contributions to SBSC). There is a farm shop / cafe nearby which is open on Saturdays, and we’re only 10 minutes drive from Yeovil and 20 minutes from Sherborne.
  16. Can I bring my dog? Sorry, dogs aren’t allowed on Wessex Water sites, with the exception of assistance dogs.
  17. Can I bring my own children? Yes, that’s fine. Remember you’ll need to ensure you have provided parental consent, included sufficient cover for them as part of your adult to child ratios and ensure they are properly supervised. They will only be able to join in with the activity if they are aged 7 or over – please include them in your estimated numbers.
  18. Some of our unit have wetsuits and sailing shoes – shall we bring them? Yes please. You’ll still need a windproof jacket, hat, and of course a full change of clothes.
  19. How do I pay? We prefer payment by bank transfer. We’ll email you our bank account details after the event. However if you don’t have online banking, please provide a cheque on the day payable to “The Guide Association Somerset – Somerspirit”.
  20. Can I get involved? Yes please! We’re looking for instructors and volunteers. If you have a sailing qualification, would like to brush up your skills and get qualified, or you’d love to give it a go, please get in touch. We will support you with training and mentoring, and you can volunteer at times to suit you.

How do I book?

Our new booking system allows you to select a date our volunteer instructors have confirmed they’re available. We hope this makes it easier for you to plan your programme. We intend to add dates every 2-3 months, so if you can’t find a suitable option, please check again later.

Our calendar shows current availability for our instructors. Please click your preferred date / start time then ‘confirm’. You may book more than one session if you have a large group. See our FAQs.

Please be aware the bookings are subject to availability of our volunteers on the day, as well as suitable weather conditions and approval from the safety officer of the day at the sailing club.

We charge £35 per unit for a 3-hour session, which includes some setting up / packing up time.

Contact us

Please use the ‘book online‘ button above to make a booking. You can tell us about any access or other needs when you make your booking. Alternatively, please send any other queries using the form below.

Somerspirit 21st birthday badge

Charity registration

We operate under a separate charity registration. Our charity is called Somerspirit, number 1079490.