Harlow (Blackwater) Sailing Club is situated on the Dengie peninsula which is an area of outstanding natural beauty.

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H(B)SC Early Years

Inland Harlow would seem a strange start for the club especially when original site was the R.Stort which whilst forming part of the boundary between Herts and Essex is only 20 metres wide at its best !  However such was the enthusiasm of the Harlow New Town that 1955 saw the launch of the club with 40 members.

The original clubhouse is now the Cohoco Restaurant just above Harlow Mill Lock and originally was a transhipment warehouse for the canalised Stort for the residents of the original Harlow.  (The writer coincidentally remembers, in a previous life, gazing at odd spars and booms secreted in the roof trusses before its conversion in the early 90s)

However the restricted nature of the Stort led to frustration and a fall in membership and a move was undertaken to Lawling Creek in 1957 where land  used as a ammunition dump in preparation for D Day, was acquired as well as a WW2 reparations Rhine ferry to be used as a clubhouse.

The club gradually grew and a new clubhouse, the dismantled  officer’s mess from Roxwell, was erected over a 4 year period and completed in 1962.  The old jetty, originally built for ammunition loading, was rebuilt at a cost of £1000 utilising a home built pile driver, the workings of which seem connected to the Bridge Over the River Kwai version !

The club expanded it’s membership catering for families and encouraging many children to sail and held its first Open Meeting in 1965.

Four main classes were catered for including Fireballs, Swifts, Mirror 14s and Mirrors plus a handicap section.  The club entered open meetings and held regular races for points. With 250 boats and a large family membership the club became well established.



Harlow (Blackwater)

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