A boater from the Isle of Man has received one of the Royal Yachting Association’s most prestigious awards from the Princess Royal, president of the RYA.
David Hill, who has been an active member of the Isle of Man Yacht Club (IMYC) for more than 30 years, was given the award for a lifetime of voluntary commitment to the club.
‘The award came totally out of the blue and I was thoroughly delighted,’ said David, whose wife had previously been given a similar award.
David was a founder member of the Manx Powerboat Club in the 1960s which was affiliated to the IMYC.
He was living in Peel at the time and helped set up a local branch of the sailing club there.
That later became the Peel Sailing and Cruising Club.
When he moved to the south of the island David became involved in providing safety boat cover for the training section of the Yacht Club and in the administration of the club as secretary of that section. He still spends hours on the water in safety craft for the club’s sailing and training programmes, enjoying his sport of powerboating.
David’s children went through the training programme there and are now RYA senior instructors for dinghy sailing.
In 2001 David became treasurer and has continued in that role, even while he was commodore from 2007-2009. He is also active in running the club’s busy social programme.
David has been instrumental in getting sponsorship for events such as the annual Round Mann Yacht Race, the National 18 Regattas held in Port St Mary and for the purchase and upkeep of the club’s training dinghies.
The citation says: ‘One of the IMYC’s most reliable and dedicated supporters, David has shown outstanding commitment, carrying out his duties to a very high standard, always with a big smile on his face, and has devoted an exceptional amount of time to the club.’
RYA director of sport development Alistair Dickson said: ‘The RYA Volunteer Awards are all about celebrating the hard work and dedication of the many volunteers who put so much in to support our sport.
‘It’s really important we take the time to say thank you. These volunteers are making our sport happen and without them we wouldn’t be getting out on the water and enjoying all the activities which we do today.’