Fleet Hire Terms

General Conditions:

  • It is a condition of use that the fleets are used for training. They are normally only to be used in the charge of an RYA qualified Dinghy Instructor, acting for an RYA affiliated organisation. Failure to comply may invalidate the insurance cover; however, in order to widen usage this has been expanded on the basis that if the course overseer does not hold such qualification, than he/she MUST be personally vetted by the Fleets Manager (this should be undertaken in plenty of time so that on-water assessment can be included if necessary).
  • Users are requested to indemnify the Insurance Excess of £50 per claim, should it be necessary to make a claim on the insurance.
  • A ‘Returnable Deposit’ of £50 per fleet-booking is required;  Photographs taken at earliest opportunity before use, of any existing defects on receipt are most valuable, and should be sent without delay to the Fleets Manager;  any defects not agreed before use commences will be attributed to the current user.
  • The 2015 season saw new boats irreparably damaged by ‘dragging’ without trolleys, poor tying-down onto trailers (in one instance, not tied at all!), mixed equipment in trailers when more than one fleet was used, fittings unbolted and apparently stolen, a trailer main draw-beam bent through inexperienced towing.
  • The user is responsible for collecting and returning the fleet to Birch Hall Adventures (CO13 0EL or MAP) or sailboards to Grafham Water.  If another hire period follows on immediately the fleet may be collected by the subsequent hirer, who will then return it the central base, but only with the express agreement of the Fleets Manager.
  • To meet the requirements of the Insurer, the fleet trailers have a hitch lock that must be in place whenever the trailer is left unattended.
  • Rates of use; first and all subsequent days £60 (inclusive VAT) per day per trailered fleet.
  • Defects should be reported as soon as possible to Alex Phillips, Fleet Manager, 07806 702482 or e-mail.
  • Users should be aware that the all-up weight of fleet trailers (laden with dinghies and associated equipment) is more than 750kg. Drivers should ensure that this does not exceed the maximum towing weight specified by the towing vehicle manufacturer, and that their driving licence includes Class C1E. Please note that recently qualified drivers are limited in the size and weight of vehicle and/or vehicle and trailer combination. Full details on DVLA website.
  • It is the driver's responsibility to provide a lighting board and number plate. For towing purposes both the Optimist and Topper fleet(s) require a trailer light board and a rear number plate;  the Tera fleet trailers have rear lights and indicators built-in but a rear number plate will be needed;  for the 2000 trailer the user is likely to need an extension cable for their lighting board.
  • All payment queries should be directed to the Regional Hon. Treasurer Peter Woods, 1 Wellington Road, Maldon, Essex, CM9 6HL.   01621 853 015 or e-mail.
  • Any other queries or variations to the usage arrangements should be discussed with the Fleet Manager, Alex Phillips.

Deficiencies, Damage and Repairs:

  • Users are responsible for inspecting the fleet on collection to confirm everything on the inventory is present and in working order. (Download inventory from this web site).  It is recommended that this is not left until the first day of the sailing course. Instructors are responsible for the safety of the users and the boats. If anything is missing or damaged please report the deficiency straight away (with photograph if appropriate) so that it can be dealt with immediately.
  • If anything is damaged or parts lost, then please repair or replace.  Use genuine replacement parts only.  Any losses or breakages identified by the Fleets’ Boatswain on return of fleets, (or by an immediately subsequent user) will be rectified and charged back to the club hiring the fleet. If the repair is costly or too large for you to deal with, please advise the Training Fleets Manager so that he can make appropriate arrangements.
  • Do not add any sponsors’ logos to the hull for any extended period during your use.
  • On completion of the hire period please check the fleet again to satisfy yourself that it is leaving you complete, with everything in working order and parts returned to their correct trailer. This will avoid inconveniencing the next user and reduce complaints from users and from the Fleets’ Boatswain; it will also avoid us sending you a bill for the breakages or missing parts and will facilitate return of the pre-paid Deposit.
  • Ensure that the boats and trailer have been thoroughly washed down to reduce the potential spread of invasive species.  All boats’ equipment must be firmly secured to the trailer with the supplied ropes or straps (but not over-tightening of hulls which may cause concavities).


Proforma invoices should be forwarded with the payment cheque as soon as possible to the Regional Hon. Treasurer, Peter Woods, 1 Wellington Road, Maldon, Essex, CM9 6HL.

In case of a dispute please contact Fleet Manager, Alex Phillips, 07806 702482 or e-mail.