150+ Years of rich sailing heritage
The Royal Dart Club can look back on 157 years of rich sailing history. The first yacht club in England was launched by the Duke of Cumberland in 1775, becoming the Royal Thames Yacht Club in 1823. In a wave of enthusiasm for sailing for pleasure that followed during the mid-Victorian era, Stoke Gabriel landowner Henry Studdy and a group of friends got together for the inaugural meeting of the Dart Yacht Club at the Castle Hotel, Dartmouth on June 8, 1866.
We enjoy some of the best sailing areas in the South West ranging from the excitement of the open sea in Start Bay to the fascinating river sailing from the castle with the lovely town of Dartmouth on one side and the beautiful village of Kingswear on the other. As a club, we take advantage of this varied environment by hosting regular club racing as well as national and international events. RDYC is the main base for the sailing events during the Port of Dartmouth Royal Regatta held at the end of August. Our active cruising section is augmented by specialist groups such as Ladies Afloat and Boys in Boats.
In addition to our focus on yacht sailing, we have a wide variety of dinghies and we have many enthusiastic motor boat owners amongst our members. Over the last 20 years our junior sailing programme has gone from strength to strength and we are proud to have a number of famous international sailors among our alumni. In addition to our thriving junior section we offer a strong training programme with a wide variety of RYA courses for all would be sailors.
Our Club benefits from the most amazing terrace overlooking the river. All year round it’s the best place on the river to be watching all the comings and goings, whilst enjoying a quiet glass of wine, or a well-earned pint of ale. Inside the clubhouse, there is a large members’ bar/lounge downstairs, and two reception rooms on the first floor with great views of the river. Thus we are able to offer a lively social programme all year round.
We serve some of the area’s best food, locally sourced and prepared with care – whether it’s a hearty crew supper, always welcome after battling the elements, or one of our now famous “pop-up” gourmet suppers you can be assured of good taste and value.