by JIM HAYES
DEDICATED to the members of the Weymouth Sailing Club who gave their lives for their Country in the Second World War – Derek Beagley, Reginald Bratby, Harold Broadway, William Butler, John Pitcher and Peter Rose – and to all the elder brethren of the Club who have passed to higher service and calmer seas.
This book began with the unearthing, from a forgotten shelf, of a collection of Minute Books dating back to 1902. They contained some interesting facts about the Club’s beginnings and were handed to me to ‘write them up into a history’ – a document which Hugh Rose undertook to publish in a limited edition on the Club’s behalf.
My little task turned out to be quite a big one. The books contained scents which had to be run to earth, stories which called for explanation, gaps which needed bridging and deadwood that had to be pruned. It took a long time but it was interesting. If the result interests my readers half as much I shall be amply rewarded.
I do not claim to have turned every stone or explored every avenue, and doubtless certain facts and stories have been missed. Others have been omitted purposely either because un-historical, uncorroborated, liable to cause offence, or all three. The sources I have used I wish to mention and acknowledge.
For the Minutes themselves I am indebted to the almost unbroken chain of Hon Secretaries who have provided the true and faithful records which form the backbone of this story. Among these, a special mention must go to Mr. T. R. Wakefield [1914-24], whose entries are a model of neat exactness, interspersed with frequent press cuttings full of interest to the historian and perhaps included for this very purpose.
My thanks are also due to the proprietors of the DORSET DAILY ECHO for granting access to their files, to Mr. F. W. Gill for press cuttings, photographs and personal memories of the Franklin Club; to Mr. A. D. Hownam Meek and Mr. F. R. Hillier [snr.] for their recollection of the Club’s beginnings; to Dr. Llewellyn Pridham for the loan of photographic blocks; to Mr. E. Wright for records and particulars of Falcons, and to Mr. R. C. Flisher for verification of the later passages and for valuable help in checking and editing the proofs.
I wish to include a ‘thank you’ to each of my typists, Mrs. H. Phipps and Miss M. Hayes, and to extend a special word of gratitude to Mr. G. H. Rose without whose co-operation this book would never have been printed.
NOTE from Rita Payne in 1994. When I agreed to research and write a continuation of the Club history, I suggested that there should be a reprint of Vol 1 written by Jim Hayes. The following script is a copy of the original book plus the first publication of Vol.II, also by Jim, which I was surprised to find amongst Club records when I started my researches.
In reproducing these documents I have stayed with Jim’s original spelling and punctuation and must express my thanks to Gill Gwinnell, Chris Liddell and Elizabeth Macmillan for the time they spent in checking these details.
I must also thank Elizabeth Macmillan and David McCune for their help in converting my discs to a format which can be used by our printer.
I hope that you enjoy reading this history which shows how much we owe to the founders of our club and which is a fitting memorial to its author, Jim Hayes, who departed from our midst on 6th July 1981.