FHA/ Lifeline sailing Regatta explained by Emily Dyster, this event made over £9000, to to call it a success would be an understatement!

‘When will I learn…’ were the thoughts going through my head whilst I was clinging on for dear life to the side of the FHA yacht after our first ‘tack’. 

As someone who is a little bit scared of the sea, mainly due to the fact that I am not the strongest of swimmers and have yet to get around to researching adult swimming lessons, Thursday 11 July 2019 was my first ever venture on to the high seas.

This year was the first time FHA and LifeLine combined forces for the industries annual charity regatta. For the past 3 years, from the safety of the office, I have helped arrange the ABTA Legal Eagles and the ABTA Insurance yachts logistics, as well as the annual dinner where both the crews and the FHA enjoy dinner and drinks.

I was really excited when I was told that I had been offered a place on the FHA charity yacht, but I was slightly mis-sold on what I would have to do whilst on-board. The FHA yacht is in fact NOT the Committee boat, and it DOES indeed take part in the racing.

As the day began, the weather was almost too good. After an early start to help FHA set up, with LifeLine banners and branding, along with finally putting names to faces of people I have been emailing for years, we were lead down to the yachts. The sea was so calm that the First Mate went to make everyone tea and coffees. I feel this time on the sea helped me get used to being on the yacht, and whilst we managed to get a glimpse of a jellyfish, I will forever more refer to this time as the calm before the storm. Soon enough the wind came in and the racing began. 

We took part in two races, with a very quick lunch sandwiched in between the two. I had never fully understood how taxing sailing could be, and now completely would class it as a sport. The ache was strong the next day, and even in to Saturday, I could still feel it. I felt quite dazed as we made our way back to Wildwoods for refreshments, the raffle and the results of the racing.

Overall the event was fantastic, I definitely relaxed in to the sailing (eventually), which is a good thing as I won second prize on the Raffle – a day sailing on a chartered yacht for me and 9 friends…

It was really great to be able to see all the bits I arrange come together, to meet new people as well as see other industry contacts. It will be extremely useful for my organisation next year, as now I have seen first-hand how the event runs. In summary it is a fantastic event for key legal and insurance partners, who support both charities, and for Members, to touch base with ABTA, and of course raise vital funds.

Over £9,000 was made from the Regatta, including £880 from the Raffle alone, which is fantastic, and the all-important results were…. 

ABTA Insurance (John) beat ABTA Legal Eagles (Simon) by one point….