The Old Consulate, 21 Bath Square, Old Portsmouth, PO1 2JL
023 9282 0596 (view map)
Commodore: Sarah Mantell
Vice-Commodore: David Stickland
Rear Commodore, Sailing: David Price
Rear Commodore, House: Phillip Jones
Honorary Secretary: Valerie Robertson-Young
Honorary Treasurer: Jim Page
Honorary Solicitor: Robin Townsend
Sailing Secretary: David Cummings
Social Secretary: Liz Wiffin
Membership Secretary: John Hughes
Moorings Officer: Andrew Rothwell
Boatyard Master: David Lloyd
Bar Manager: Bob Stewart
General Committee Member: Samantha Lloyd
Portsmouth Sailing Club is the home of the successful Parhelion yacht racing series held every spring and autumn which attracts novice and experienced crews alike and has been running since 2002. In addition to the Parhelion, there are well-attended weekend passage cruises to Solent harbours, venues in the South West of England and cross-channel to Northern France. For dinghies, there is the Frostbite series which runs during October and November. 2015 with be its 59th running, making it possibly the oldest dinghy winter series in the area. Portsmouth SC also continues its long affiliation with the historic and competitive Victory Class one-design keelboats, who have been known to compete in the Frostbite.
Clubhouse & Facilities
Portsmouth Sailing Club is based in historic Old Portsmouth in premises that look over the harbour entrance. The Club has the use of two boatyards for dinghies, tenders and RIBS. The Club enjoys quick access to Portsmouth Harbour and the Solent at all states of the tide from the East Street public slip and owns moorings in Portsmouth Harbour.
The Club has been housed at its current premises, currently undergoing renovation and improvement, in Bath Square since 1926 in one of the oldest surviving buildings in Portsmouth. The Clubhouse, a Grade 2 listed building, was constructed in the 1830s and many of the timber beams visible inside are from ships broken up at that time. Before the Club acquired it for the sum of £200, the building had previously served as a consulate to thirteen different nations and, somewhat less illustriously, as a French onion store. The charismatic clubhouse is naturally the centre of our vibrant social programme.
Portsmouth Sailing Club was founded in 1920. Among the founding members was local artist W. L. Wyllie, well known for his maritime paintings, some of which are on display in the HMS Victory Museum in HM Dockyard. The Club’s first cruise was across the Solent to Ryde on the Isle of Wight on 21st June of that year. In the mid-1990s, Portsmouth Sailing Club hosted the Portsmouth fixtures on the Vauxhall Ultra 30 Grand Prix and the Prudential 18ft Skiff calendar and in 2003 provided support for the Mini Pavois Mini 6.5m Class race from La Rochelle to Dordogne via Portsmouth. Most recently, Portsmouth Sailing Club assisted in the start of the latest Global Challenge yacht race, providing support craft and laying the starting area marks.
Most famous however was the popular Pompey Perisher annual open dinghy event run between 1970 and 2002. Started inadvertently in 1970 by club member Don Metcalf as a one-off winter race for local clubs, the Perisher snowballed to national fixture attracting over 210 dinghies at its peak, bringing entrants from both local clubs and clubs as far away as Berwick in Scotland.
Up until its departure from the harbour in 1987, HMS Foudroyant, the oldest British wooden warship afloat, served as the start boat for races in the Frostbite dinghy series. The ship is now berthed on the east coast at Hartlepool and has been restored and has reverted to her original name, HMS Trincomalee.