Lackford/St Edmundsbury: Partnership develops between sailing club and Caribbean island of Antigua
In some ways Lackford in west Suffolk and the Caribbean island of Antigua could not be more different.
However, the St Edmundsbury Sailing & Canoeing Association (SESCA), based at Lackford, and the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority have developed a partnership thanks to a Google alert.
Mike Steele, racing officer for the SESCA, explained the Antigua Sailing Week Race Committee picked up about the west Suffolk club’s inaugural Antigua Sailing Day at Lackford last year and got in contact via the tourism authority.
He said the tourism authority was sponsoring this year’s Antigua Sailing Day, which incorporates a Laser Masters Open Meeting, at Lackford on April 27 and would be providing rum as prizes and a steel band. He added Cherrie Osborne, of the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority, would be attending.
Mr Steele, who came up with the idea of the Antigua Sailing Day at Lackford, said: “It’s absolutely amazing. I couldn’t believe it when I heard from them.
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“We were delighted we were able to establish the relationship.”
Ms Osborne said: “We learnt about last year’s event when it popped up in our Google alerts.
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“We were honoured that the SESCA would want to create an event that mirrored one of the most important events on our sailing calendar.
“Antigua and Barbuda is one of the premier sailing destinations internationally and is the yachting capital of the Caribbean.
“On contacting Mike Steele, SESCA committee member, to show our gratitude we discussed ways in which we could support them in the future.
“As a small club, we understand some of the challenges they may face as our Antigua Sailing Week started from humble beginnings with only 10 boats in 1967 to a world-class event with over 200 entries in recent years.
“We hope that our partnership with the club would also help the club to grow and that it will be a partnership that will continue.”
For more information on the Antigua Sailing Day visit www.westsuffolksailing.org.uk