burnham week

Burnham Week is a week of yachting events held on the River Crouch at Burnham in late August each year.

The next event will be held from Saturday 27 August to Saturday 3 September 2016.

Burnham Week started as a series of contests in the late 1800's between the London Sailing Club and The Royal Corinthian Yacht Club. As The Royal Burnham Yacht Club and the Crouch Yacht Club opened the contests expanded into a more organised week of sailing.

Burnham Week grew in popularity as it was traditionally the last of the sailing weeks and yacht owners worked their way along the coast through the summer before finally arriving at Burnham and after the weeks racing moored their boats for the winter in the mud berths available on the Essex estuaries.

Burnham Week continued to grow with nearly 200 yachts taking part in the Thirties which grew to over 400 in the early nineties although three type of yacht changes with fewer gentlemen yachtsmen paying for their crew gave way to smaller yachts with friends who crewed the yachts and  small craft requiring or two men crews.

The waters of the Crouch  has produced many international class sportsmen including national, world and Olympic champion yachtsmen and women. Olympic Gold medallists like Shirley Roberston and Ben Ainslee not only have sailed on the Crouch but favour local boatyards for their medal winning yachts

The modern Burnham Week is organised by the Joint Club's Committee comprising of representatives from the four clubs in Burnham and individuals who have specific responsibility during Burnham Week.

Competition takes place in the following classes - Class 1, Class 2, Class 4, Class 5, Class 6, Hunter 707, RS Elite , Dragons, Squibs, Sandhoppers, RBODs , RCODs , ECOD , Osprey , Dinghy Fast Handicap, Dinghy Slow Handicap, Phantom , Laser.

Some of the races start and finish off the Quay and take place in the River although many start to the east of Burnham and travel out into the sea. Viewing of races is best on the water but much of the racing can be viewed from the Riverbank.

At about 5pm on the Sunday of Burnham Week a service is held on the Quay near to the White Harte Hotel to bless the Lifeboat. The RNLI Crew are joined by a the congregation from local churches and visiting yachtsman for this open air service.

On the Bank Holiday Monday of Burnham Week  the Quay is lined by stalls and activities while  sailing takes place in the River nearby. This event called Quay Day draws visitors from a wide area.

The four host yacht Clubs - Royal Burnham Yacht Club, Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, Crouch Yacht Club and Burnham Sailing Club all host Dinners and entertainments during the evenings to allow the competitors to socialise and discuss all those ' if the wind hadn't changed then' moments.

Burnham Week has a great web site full of details on photographs of the action. Click here to visit the Burnham Week Web Site..

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