Taking to the water

Pupils from Oakwood School are learning the basics of sailing from double Olympic champion Sarah Ayton

This summer pupils from Oakwood School in Chichester are taking part in sailing taster sessions at Bosham Sailing Club with a double Olympic gold medallist. Sarah Ayton OBE, who won sailing gold medals in both the Athens and Beijing Olympic games, is supervising the programme, designed to give every pupil in year five and six an introduction to sailing. She is hoping to pass on some of her passion for sailing and to inspire children to take up the sport.

The first session saw 16 pupils, aged 9 to 11, out on Bosham channel in the school’s new fleet of ‘oppies’ under the guidance of Sarah herself and instructors from Bosham Sailing Club. Both novices and more experienced sailors alike said that they thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon and loved the chance to share a boat with an Olympic and world champion.

The scheme will continue every week throughout the summer term, with 20 children also taking an RYA qualifying course. 


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