HRH The Princess Royal honours Leek Sailors

Tuesday 3rd December 2019

Two Leek sailors have been presented with prestigious national awards by HRH The Princess Royal, President of the Royal Yachting Association (RYA), in recognition of their exceptional generosity and commitment to the sport at grassroots level.

Rudyard Lake Sailing Club’s Tricia Ordsmith received an RYA Lifetime Commitment Award, for individuals who have shown exceptional commitment and dedication to their club or organisation for at least 15 years, at the RYA’s annual awards at One George Street, London on Friday 22 November.

She was joined by young clubmate, Lucas Barrow, who was presented with an RYA Youth Award, for individuals under 25 who have demonstrated a regular commitment and/or inspirational contribution over-and-above their own participation or achievement within the sport.

Presenting the awards, Her Royal Highness paid tribute to the invaluable contribution and considerable difference all the winners have made to their clubs and associations around the country and in people being able to get out and enjoy being on the water.


Lucas Barrow receiving an RYA Youth Award

Lucas Barrow received an RYA Youth Award from HRH The Princess Royal on Friday 22 November.


Lucas, 19, has been a member of Rudyard Lake since he was a shy five-year-old with a beaming smile out on the water. He goes above and beyond what is expected of him, teaching, coaching and supporting junior sailors and getting more to race regularly. By the age of 14, Lucas had become an RYA Assistant Instructor, at 16 he was an RYA Dinghy Instructor and at 18 an RYA Senior Instructor. He’s also a qualified Race Coach.

Speaking at the ceremony, Lucas said: “Volunteering has involved me teaching, coaching and sailing alongside other people, which has given me confidence and independence because I think for myself and others when I’m doing my Senior Instructor role. It’s also given me teamwork as I work amongst a team. This is definitely building me as a person.

“I can also give confidence to the younger ones, so their confidence levels increase, and they can carry on and pass it on to the next people. Seeing the chain of confidence passed down is really nice.”

Tricia joined Rudyard Lake, near Leek, over 25 years ago, and has been the force for progress at the club. Her skill and experience have inspired hundreds of young local sailors, some of whom have gone on to careers in sailing, and in various management committee roles over the years, she has brought out the best in others to ensure the club builds on its strengths. She also works across the Midlands as an RYA Sailing Development Officer.


Tricia Ordsmith presented with an RYA Lifetime Commitment Award

Tricia Ordsmith was presented with an RYA Lifetime Commitment Award by HRH The Princess Royal on Friday 22 November.


Speaking on behalf of the RYA, James Allan, RYA Scotland CEO, said: “Our sport genuinely would not exist if we didn’t have the cadre of volunteers across the clubs and organisations, no matter what type of boating it happens to be you’re involved in. Without volunteers clubs simply don’t happen. Their commitment is so important, it’s the bedrock of everything our sport depends on in the UK.”

The RYA is boating’s national governing body and the Volunteer Awards are considered the ‘MBEs’ of the sport, honouring people throughout the UK for their outstanding contributions across all the disciplines the RYA represents, including sailing, windsurfing, powerboating, inland waterways and personal watercraft.

The winners, who were from as far afield as County Down to Torquay, were nominated by their clubs and selected by the RYA Honours and Awards Panel. For more information about the RYA Volunteer Awards or to find out how you can get out on the water in the Midlands visit