Elie set to climb on board East Neuk’s skiff revival

The St Ayles rowing club from Anstruther. Now, Elie's skiff could be operational in a year.
The St Ayles rowing club from Anstruther. Now, Elie's skiff could be operational in a year.

Elie is the latest East Neuk coastal community that looks like joining the skiff revival.

Elie & Earlsferry Sailing Club has organised a meeting on February 26, at 7.30pm, with the aim of forming a group interested in building and rowing a burgh skiff.

Anstruther, Pittenweem and Crail already have boats and teams in place, while St Monans’ boat is under construction.

A spokesman for the sailing club said: “It is intended that the new rowing club be based at Elie Harbour, as the sailing club has generously offered the use of its clubhouse, which includes a spacious meeting room, toilets, showers and a galley where you can get hot and cold drinks and snacks to keep you going.

“The club also has storage premises, where it is very likely the new boat will be built.

“Once launched, there are great opportunities for the crews to do coastal rowing, take part in skiff racing – not just in Elie, but all over the country and the continent.

“There will be many great weekends away meeting other rowers from other clubs and taking part in rowing events.

“The Pittenweem boat often comes along to train in the safe sheltered waters of Elie Bay and this has created interest in local folks – so it’s time to build an Elie skiff.”

The meeting at the sailing club is to find out who might be interested in getting involved with the venture. There will also be the chance to meet experienced skiff people to discuss how the Elie Rowing Club should be formed, who would be interested in helping to build the new boat, who would like to crew it, and more.

Anyone from 10 years up can be part of a crew and the five-person crews can be formed from families, clubs, pubs, schools and organisations, by age and gender.

“We are not limited to residents of Elie,” explained the spokesman. “Holiday home owners, people with disabilities and folk from in and around Elie and the East Neuk will all be welcome.”

It is intended to build the boat over the winter months of 2015 and launch it early in 2016 but, before then, various avenues of financial support will be examined, as well as local fund-raising events.

You can can get further information by e-mailing elieskiff@btinternet.com or calling 0747 426 9633.