Sailing is one of the few sports in which able-bodied and disabled sailors can participate on equal terms. Imagine the thrill of sailing for people who can feel and hear but have no sight, or of sailing a boat at speed even though they can’t walk, or of joining in a sport where deafness doesn’t matter. Poole Sailability is a local charity that enables people with disabilities to enjoy the sport of sailing in Poole Harbour. We are a registered charity that is entirely managed and operated by volunteers. We were granted Registered Charity Status in 2009, and are led by a committee of Trustees who are elected annually. The charity is supported by members’ fundraising, donations and grants. We welcome all people from the age of 12 upwards, with most types of disability.
We are based on the quay at Rockley Park in Hamworthy, in a quiet and beautiful area within the safe confines of Poole Harbour. We are hosted by the Bourne Leisure Group who support our activities. There are shore side facilities include fully accessible toilets, disabled parking space, and a welcoming beach café. On Wednesday evenings and Sunday mornings from April to October, disabled members can sail with assistance from our volunteer helpers. Each of our four Hawk keelboats can take up to five people and are fast, fun and have great stability. The boats are always accompanied by our state of the art Safety Boat, which provides a swift response when needed, and ensures the safety of all. Participants are encouraged to take an active part in the sailing of the boats, and informal training is offered for those who are inexperienced. All safety equipment and lifejackets are provided. As an accredited Royal Yachting Association (RYA) Foundation site we maintain stringent standards of safety for our boats and equipment, and ensure that all our skippers are suitably experienced.
Community Outreach Programme
In addition to our club sailing days, each Friday morning we arrange taster sailing sessions for local people with physical or mental impairment. Individuals and groups of up to 12 can enjoy being on the water with assistance from our experienced and friendly volunteers. For those who want to continue sailing, they can join our club sessions on Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings.