Emsworth Sailing Club former club commodores: (left to right) Richard Kent, Tim Goodhead (in front), Geoff Walker (behind), Michael Geary (current commodore), Margaret Jay, Chris Clode, Marcus Lawson, Ian McIntyre, Roger Bleasby.

Emsworth Sailing Club has launched its centenary celebrations and commemorations with a reception in the clubhouse.

More than 150 people attended the drinks reception and cake cutting, along with eight former Commodores of the club.  A special commemorative cake was cut by the longest serving club member, and the junior captains.

This marks the first of a series of activities both on and off the water, including a centenary regatta, a sailpast, a moonlight race, kayak and paddleboard fun events, an East Head family invasion and, for the landlubbers, a beer and band festival, a centenary ball, vintage tea party, and a hard back history of the club. In addition, a new range of centenary themed club clothing is being produced.

The juniors, who make up more than 20 per cent of the membership, also have a full programme of fun events with an Emsworth millpond carnival, a swimming gala, crabbing competitions and a sail to and BBQ on Fowley Island.

The club was founded by six members at the end of World War I and has grown in popularity and strength to its current membership of around 1,600. It plays a major role in the life of this Hampshire fishing village and its iconic location holds fond memories for many generations of sailors.

The oldest sailing club on Chichester Harbour, ESC is a family oriented club with a thriving sailing and social community, with members drawn not just from the surrounding locality but attracting families from further afield, such as Surrey and London.

It is also an RYA affiliated club and has produced its fair share of Olympic contenders and national champions, currently counting more than 30 national or world titles from amongst the male, female and junior members since 2000 alone. Indeed among its most famous scions are Admiral of the Fleet Lord Louis Mountbatten and the round the world yachtsman and record breaker, Sir Peter Blake.

Marking the launch, club Commodore, Michael Geary said: “Emsworth Sailing Club has gone from strength to strength over many generations, and I am honoured to be leading the centenary celebrations on behalf of the members. We have a great many activities planned, from serious racing to fun for all the family and we are aiming to appeal across the board to as many members as possible.”