Info for Sailors

Club Sailing

The club has a programme of activities for members throughout the year as summer “taster” sailing sessions for people who are interested in joining the club.

With its fast tides and eddying winds, sailing on the Thames is always fascinating and challenging, and it is said that if you can sail a dinghy on the river Thames you can sail on any water in the world!

The club is committed to helping members improve their sailing skills as well as having fun. Safety boat cover is provided and members are free to cruise or to race. Racing is round buoys on Putney Reach at high tide, or downriver; both going out and returning with the tide. Our members also visit and compete against other clubs.

Club dinghies for members to hire include 6 Lasers, 2 Solos, 3 Enterprises, 2 Xenons, 2 GP 14s, a Supernova and two Laser 13s.

Use of the Club Dinghy Park

Members may keep their boats in the club’s dinghy-park subject to availability and the terms and conditions set out in the club regulations.

What to wear

Our Membership FAQ provides the essential advice on suitable clothing for sailing; and our Gear Suggestions page gives detailed examples if you're overwhelmed by options!

Social Sailor?

You can join the club with a social-only membership. We hold a variety of social events, all of which can be found through the following link:

Saturday General Sailing

Saturdays are about just having fun! New members often like to start with our Saturday sessions, trying out different single and 2-3 handed boats with a safety boat on hand. 

As Saturday sailors you can decide as a group what you’d like to do – have a few short races, or do your own thing – perhaps practice a technique and get tips from our more experienced sailors. Usually we run some informal, "zero stakes" races without applying handicaps.

Check the sailing calendar for dates and times.

Trophy Racing

Sundays are when we hold the club race series.

We have two types of race depending upon the tide:

Both reward mastery of the Thames’s very variable conditions.

Follow events on the water with our race reports and results.

Wind Observations

A median day at Putney requires a sailor to make the most of a light-ish, variable southwesterly.

The best sailing tends to be on the slightly stronger-than-average days, perhaps with a forecast of around 10kts gusting 20kts, depending of course on your personal taste.

When the forecast gust speed exceeds 25kts we start to take safety measures; the windiest day we've tracked ourselves sailing in was forecast 18-34kts, with some careful safety measures taken.

The lowest forecast we've ever tracked at the club is 1-5 kts (unsailable) and the highest was 25-67 kts (Storm Eunice)

Throughout the year we have to cancel or abort approximately 1 day in 7 due to too much or too little wind. 

About 2 days in 7, the wind is sailable, but significantly less or more than is ideal for everyone.

That leaves about 4 days in 7 (57%!) of 'good' wind; though that grouping includes an extreme diversity of conditions, from gusts and rain or even snow, to a perfect summer sail!