It all began in the early seventies when the River Medina was still very much a commercial navigation river. The moorings, administered as now by both Newport Harbour (Isle of Wight Council) and Cowes Harbour Commission, consisted entirely of piled berths and swing moorings managed locally by a Harbour Master based at the Folly. The Folly, then very much a traditional pub and the venue for the Folly Regatta, was a focal point for local river users. The period was one of increasing change and it was felt by a growing number of people that many of the changes being discussed in river use were in danger of not recognising the needs of the berth holders, the family sailor and of those whose enjoyment was taken purely from the peace and tranquillity of the river valley environment. With a nucleus of interested people the Association was formed in March 1972 with the aim of “protecting and furthering the interests of the users of the River Medina”.

The Association grew quickly and by 1973 had 200 members paying an annual subscription fee of 50p per person. Whilst there were no facilities provided by the Association at that time there was a strong social diary with regular talks by local sailing celebrities and folk nights at the Folly. A programme of sailing events was soon established for both dinghies and, with an emphasis on encouraging short handed sailing, for cruising yachts. In this latter respect the most popular event was the Round the Island Single Handed race, attracting in some years up to 45 entries

By the early eighties, with steady membership numbers, the Association looked to improve access to the river and to establish a greater level of permanency by providing a Committee meeting place and facilities for storing dinghies. To this end, financed from member donations and grants raised from such bodies as the Sports Council, dinghy storage facilities, a launching slip and a meeting hut were constructed. Seeking to draw on the benefits from an improved financial position for both Members and the association itself, the Association in 1981applied for and was granted charitable status. In doing so it reaffirmed its aims and objectives to promote and protect the leisure users interests in the river and to protect the estuary environment for the benefit of the community as a whole.

A Committee of trustees, who are elected annually at the Annual General Meeting, manages the Association. Clickhere for details of the current Committee.

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Tel. 07807 566221

Email. honorarysecretary@medinamariners.org


Harbour Office,
Folly Lane, East Cowes,
Isle of Wight PO31 6NB

Registered Charity Number 282493

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