This is the third item we have written based on the BIFFA members database, which is accessible to all Fifteeners who have paid their fees!! And the vote on the new rig is coming up, so if you miss your chance in that you’ll be spitting mad…. probably double spitting if you’re a classic/silver owner – so get signed up!!
I need a new name for the database though – it isn’t the case that it is a list of current members. So it is really somewhat more akin to an “Owners Database”…
In Years gone by, the FF Year Book used to rank the number of boats(members actually) per Fleet across the country. I think the data showed current year and previous year so you could see the trends. I don’t know about you, but I used to study that avidly. We don’t seem to publish it now, even online. Pity… As a competitive natured Fleet Captain you do tend to react to public data which shows you where you rank in the world race!!
Back to the owners database…. if you click on the column Header for “Club”, the whole thing will be ranked by Club Fleet.
I think I have counted elsewhere on the BIFFA website, that there are 48 recognised FF Clubs. We also know too that about 32 of them are big enough or active enough to run an Open Meeting – you can work that out from the BIFFA calendar. Well, I have been through the Owners list – and if you count all the fleets with three or more boat owner/members there are 42 Clubs. We should remember that according to FFI a Club will get “Fleet Status” if it has six boats whose owners are members of the National Association – on that basis we would have around 25 Fleets approximately.
It’s only an indicator as to what is going on. Given the 500 names that are on here, I feel there must be 400-500 names who are not. There surely must be somewhere between 500 and 1,000 FF’s still sailing in the UK… Hayling and Windermere, for various reasons have a very high %age of their owners in BIFFA and the rest of us should take note. But as a rule of thumb, maybe you can take the numbers of members that I list below, and then double it for the number of boats in the Club… So if I say they have 3 BIFFA members, there may actually be around half a dozen flying fifteens there. Here we go… your table of Fleet Sizes…
Big Fleets :-
30 members – Hayling and Windermere (Hurrah!)
24 members – Bewl
23 members – Grafham and Parkstone
Medium Size Fleets:-
Derwent (17), Llangorse (16), Dovestone (15), Datchet (14), Draycote (12), Chew (12), Burton (11), Carsington (10)
Small Fleets :-
RMYC Poole (9), but together with Parkstone would make this a big FF Community
Northampton (9), Middle Nene (8), Broxbourne (8), Cardiff Bay (8), Loch Lomond (8), Solent (8), Bassenthwaite (7), Rutland (7), Clywedog (6), South Windermere (6), Loch Earn (6)
Really Quite Small but Enthusiastic Fleets:-
Holy Loch (5), Loch Ard (5), Loch Tummel (5), South Cerney (5), Solway (5), Queen Mary (5) , Bala (4), Hartlepool (4), Humber (4), Lerwick (4), Llyn Brenig (3), Notts County (3), Ogston (3), Royal Corinthian 3 (Waples Land – Hurrah!), Torbay (3), Ullswater (3), Llyn Brenig (3), Aldeburgh (2)
So that’s it !! The FF Blog’s Four Leagues of Flying Fifteen Fleets sailing in UK. I’d hazard a guess that just by letting the Fleet Captain’s know where their Fleet stands in the rankings will empower them to go out and find the unjoined owners – and get them signed up before the vote on the New Rig comes out of FFI !! We’d expect that many Fleets will feel under-represented in this league table. The number of boats in your boat park will feel a lot larger in many cases. So get signed up!!
And how does our Fleet at Datchet fair?? I would guess we are a good average to work from. We have 14 showing on here. We have three boats in our loan boat program, and a couple of members I think own two boats (lovable lunatics..!), so that’s maybe 20. Last time I counted there were about 30 boats parked in FF row. So FC, we have about ten boats not joined to BIFFA… who are they and why not?!!