The Royal Yorkshire Yacht Club was formally established in 1847 by Hull businessmen and ship owners. It was originally based in both Hull and Whitby and staged two annual regattas from its inception.
Royal patronage began with Queen Victoria and continues today with the Duke of Edinburgh who last visited the Club during its 150th anniversary year in 1997.
The RYYC was recognised by the Lords of the Admiralty by the issue of a warrant allowing members to wear the red ensign and burgee defaced with the Queen’s crown and white rose of York. This was changed to the current defaced blue ensign and burgee in 1929.
By the turn of the century there was increasing traffic on the Humber and in the Hull Docks making the area less suitable for pleasure yachting. Consequently the Club decided to move its activities to Bridlington, where it occupied various premises until in 1939 the present Clubhouse, previously the Ozone Hotel, was acquired and adapted to provide facilities for members and visiting yacht crews, to whom a special welcome has always been extended.
A measure of the Club’s continuity is its century-long involvement with the Yorkshire One Design. First introduced in 1898, this wooden 25 foot day sailing boat is the oldest British one design, celebrating its centenary in 1998 with the visit of honorary member Sir Edward Heath and the naming of “Patience” the first new Y.O.D. for forty years. Nine of these lovely old boats are still actively racing and can been seen in their cradles towards the western end of the harbour.
The Club has an active Dinghy Section, operating both catamarans and monohulls beach-launched from its site at Blyth Park Wilsthorpe some two miles south of the harbour. A number of open events are held each year, including the Long-distance Hornsea Race, covering 22 miles, and the annual Dinghy Regatta, nowadays an informal members’ weekend, is held over the August bank holiday.
This wonderful Pathe films show how RYYC members used to let their hair down:
The following article appeared in Yachting World detailing the history of the Yorkshire One Design: