Push The Boat Out day gets landlubbers afloat

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Landlubbers longing for new adventure had their boats floated for free at Oban Sailing Club on Saturday.

The club in Gallanach Road invited people to come and join it as part of the Royal Yachting Association’s (RYA) national Push The Boat Out day.

Dinghies, keel boats and skiff rowing were just some of the activities on offer for the crowd of all ages who turned up to have a go.

There was also involvement from the crew of Oban lifeboat who put in an appearance with the Mora Edith MacDonald. RNLI fundraisers were also there with a stall.

Oban Sea Cadets were trying out the two Quest double-handler boats for the first time that they were recently gifted from boatmaker RS. Cadet Kate Hone, 14, gave them the thumbs up.

The sailing club was also promoting its courses for this year which include sailing for adult beginners in July.

A Monday Mayhem session for member families is also proving popular at the club, giving families the chance to learn sailing skills while having fun out on the water.

Chief executive of RYA Scotland James Allan called in on the open day and said: ‘There are events like this happening all over as part of Push The Boat Out but what makes this Oban one so special is that you get a great sense of community about it.

‘We’ve had youngsters from the schools, the Scouts, the Sea Cadets as well as general public all turning up to get involved – not forgetting the lifeboat crew and fundraisers.

‘The idea is quite simply to get more people out on the water and Oban has definitely achieved that.’

The club’s Iain Campbell said: ‘We had a very successful attendance throughout the day with many families and groups doing taster sessions.

‘We had 80 members of the public on the day with over 20 club volunteers helping and lots of inquiries about dinghy sailing courses which we are running in the summer. We had Beavers and Cubs from 37th Argyll Scout group come in the morning who enjoyed on the water and the cakes afterwards!’