World famous yachtsman launches new trust to give sailing opportunities to young people

Date: Round the world yachting pioneer Sir Robin Knox-Johnston has helped to launch a new trust that will give life-changing opportunities to young people by introducing them to offshore sailing.


The Royal Dee Yacht Club Trust will finance activities each year for young people in the north west of England, North Wales and Ireland.

It has been made possible as a result of a bequest to the yacht club by Jean Baker
in memory of her late husband Peter, both of whom have been long-term members and supporters of the RDYC.

The Trust aims to encourage participation in offshore sailing, including to younger people who may not otherwise have access to the sport.



(From Left to right: David Taylor, Chairman of the trustees, Jean Baker and Sir Robin Knox-Johnston.)

It was officially launched by Sir Robin on Sunday, July 29 who added his support during a visit to Liverpool for the climax of the biennial Clipper Round The World yacht race which he established and for which is executive chairman. He was famously the first person to sail solo and non-stop around the world in 1969, and also set the first record for the fastest circumnavigation with late Sir Peter Blake.

Sir Robin said: “I welcome this initiative from Royal Dee Yacht Club to help young people get into offshore sailing which will offer them life-changing opportunities and chances of great adventures on the oceans of our world.”

He was invited to perform the launch by RDYC Commodore Alastair Soane who has been involved with Clipper races since 2003. He said: “Thanks to the generosity of Jean Baker and the hard work of the trustees we are going to continue the traditions of our ancient club in making sure that sailing enhances the lives of those who participate.”

Chair of the trustees, David Taylor said: “The wonderful opportunity presented by Jean Baker and her later husband Peter means that we will be able to support youth keelboat sailing from our base in North Wales and the North West of England.

“I learnt my keelboat sailing as a result of the generosity of Royal Dee members and to be able to formalise the opportunities, which the Trust will enable, is a fantastic step forward. I hope that we will be in a position, very shortly, to award some support to our first beneficiaries.”

Fellow trustee Debbie Edge said: “I am looking forward to seeing deserving young people benefit from participating in a sport which, over the years, I have learnt so much from, made so many friends within and had an enormous amount of fun doing.’

The club will post further details about the mechanics of the award and further eligibility requirements on its website www.royaldee.co.uk in the coming weeks.

For further details contact: David Taylor at SailingTrust@royaldee.co.uk