2020 AGM

Minutes of the Combined Comet Class Association – Annual General Meeting
By Correspondence – Saturday 25 July 2020
Chairman – Adrian Padro

  1. Introduction. The Coronavirus pandemic caused the cancellation of the AGM scheduled to take place at Llangorse SC in conjunction with the inland championships. On 26 May 20, the CCCA Committee discussed various options for holding an AGM during 2020. The ongoing uncertainty over the current pandemic led the committee to consider that holding the 2020 AGM by correspondence was the best option available.
  2. Procedure. Holding the AGM by correspondence required a set of procedures to be drawn up so that CCCA members were aware of how to take part and how the AGM would be run. The procedures adopted were agreed by the CCCA Committee and sent to all CCCA Members together with the AGM Agenda, by e-mail, on the 13 Jun 20. Also, with this e-mail, Trio owners were sent a copy of the Draft Trio rules which were first sent out in Dec 19 and were up for ratification under Agenda Item 6. In addition, these documents were posted on the CCCA website under a headline that announced the 2020 AGM. The procedures are attached to these minutes.
    The text of the e-mail sent to all CCCA Members went on to say:
    Further documents will be placed on the CCCA website as they become available. I hope that the procedures are clear and if not that the process of questioning them is clear – basically send me an e-mail and we will try to sort out a solution.
    Please engage with this process, it is the first time we have tried to do this so if it doesn’t go perfectly please be tolerant! I would particularly ask you to help update the CCCA membership register so that we get maximum participation so send this e-mail on to other owners of CCCA class boats at your club and encourage them to get involved, it costs nothing and we want to hear from as many members as possible at this time. We would particularly like to hear from clubs that have Trios as training boats and any Versa owners who would be willing to serve on the committee as the Versa rep. If anyone would like to become a committee member please let me know!
  3. Questions prior to the AGM. Chris Boutle queried the procedure for marking the Rowsell Trio sails and the timescale available for this to be done. The procedure for marking the Rowsell Trio sails was published on the CCCA website on 15 Jun 20. The timescale available was considered by the CCCA Committee and confirmed reasonable by e-mail to Chris. Both these e-mails and the responses were published on the CCCA website iaw the Procedures para 7.
  4. Proposal of Alternative Motions, and Alternative Officers and Committee Members. No proposals of alternative motions or offers to serve on the CCCA Committee were received by the secretary before (or indeed after) the specified date.
  5. The minutes of the last AGM, 4 May 2019 had been posted on the CCCA website since late May 2019.
  6. Reports.
    a. Association Officers.
    i. Treasurer:
    Caroline McAusland reported the Association accounts in her written report (attached).
    Current balance £4523.88 on 1 Jun 20.
    ii. Secretary:
    Bob Horlock described CCCA activity during the past year in his report (attached).
    He recorded the actions that had arisen from last year’s AGM particularly in regard to the Trio Rules and the renaming of the CCCA.
    He noted that 13 Trios had attended the 2019 Inlands at Llangorse. The Trio Nationals were held at Brixham YC on 2 -4th August 2019 and 18 Trios, gathered for an event held in light winds. The Duos had again held their Nationals at Cransley SC with 14 boats taking part. (See Duo Report attached).
    iii. Chairman:
    In his report (attached), Adrian Padro noted the difficulties caused by the Coronavirus pandemic and the efforts clubs were making to return to sailing as usual. He was pleased to see that 5 new Mk2 Trios had been produced by, or ordered from, Peak Dinghies since the last AGM. He thanked all involved with supporting the CCCA both at events and behind the scenes and reserved a special thank you for Steve Ashford who after 12 years is standing down as Webmaster and handing over the digital reins to Steve White.
    b. Builders
    i. Versa, Zero and Duo (Comet Dinghies –Andy Simmons)
    In his report (attached), Andy recorded his recent activities and reassured owners of these boats that he still had stocks of spare parts. He had agreed with Rowsell Sails that they can now supply them direct to owners of Versas, Duos and Zeros.
    ii. Trio (Peak Dinghies – Glyn Rawson)
    In his report (attached), Glyn reviewed the key milestones since Peak Dinghies took over building the Trio 5 years ago. He recorded the sales of new boats, the introduction of the new rig, the production of a prototype ‘Code Zero’ spinnaker by North and the fact that with increased sales of Trios he was able to hold a stock of spare parts.
  7. Discussion. Despite the small number of questions raised prior to the AGM, there was lively discussion on the CCCA Facebook page during the voting period with an active campaign to reject the proposed Draft Trio Rules.
  8. Decisions. In accordance with the procedures published for the 2020 AGM, decisions were made by members voting via a survey form on the CCCA website. The survey form was made available on 31 Jul 2020. Initially, members should have voted by 7 Aug 2020 but this deadline was extended by a further 7 days as comments made on the CCCA Facebook page indicated that some members had not received the original e-mail communication. There were a small number of issues with voting, particularly with people who had more than one class of boat and one or 2 who had not received the e-mail with the password which allowed them to vote. The secretary then checked the votes cast against the membership register and resolved further issues, principally concerning the sail number of the boats members owned, with the member concerned.
    The results of the voting were sent out by e-mail on 15 Aug 20 as follows:
    Valid votes were cast by 57 Trio owners, 10 Duo, 4 Versa and 2 Zero owners.  This is a much better participation than we could have expected were the traditional AGM held at the CCCA Inlands. There is of course much to be said for having a physical meeting in terms of discussion but given the circumstances this year it was the best we could do.  In future it may be that a meeting together with some online voting may enable both discussion and the inclusion of members who are unable to attend the meeting – something for your Committee to ponder!

The CCCA AGM 2020 should be conducted in accordance with the procedure published on the CCCA website. 95% for 5% against – Motion Carried

The minutes of the CCCA AGM 2019 held at Llangorse SC are accepted as a true record of that meeting. 98% for 2% against – Motion Carried

The statement of accounts presented by the Treasurer should be accepted as a true record of the CCCA accounts. 98% for 2% against – Motion Carried

The Comet Trio Class Rules dated 5 Dec 19 should be adopted as the rules for the Comet Trio and the Comet Trio Mk2. 30 votes for 27 votes against (this does not meet the required 2/3 majority criteria in the constitution and so the Motion is Defeated)

Election of Officers
a.     Chairman – Adrian Padro was re-elected 97% for 3% against
b.     Secretary – Bob Horlock was re-elected 97% for 3% against  
c.     Cruising Secretary – Steve White was re-elected 100% for 0% against
d.     Treasurer – Caroline McAusland – was re-elected 96% for 4% against
e.     Communications Officer – Tracie Padro – was re-elected 98% for 2% against
f.      Versa Captain. 2 offers to fill this vacant post were received during the voting period and a further offer has been received since.  (Secretary’s Note. Richard Salliss has been welcomed onto the CCCA Committee in this role)
g.     Duo Captain – Stephen Linton – was re-elected 100% for 0% against
h.     Webmaster Steve Ashford standing down after 12 years – Steve White volunteered to fill this role and was elected 98% for 2% against.

  1. Venues for Inlands, National Championships and Open Meetings for 2021.
    a. CCCA Inlands. Llangorse SC have agreed to welcome us back for the CCCA Inlands to be staged on Sat 1st May and Sun 2nd May 2021.
    b. Nationals
    i. Trios. Exe SC have agreed to host the Trio Nationals Fri 30th Jul to Sun 1st Aug 2021.
    ii. Versas, Duos and Zeros. The Duo Nationals would be again held at Cransley SC in 2021.
    iii. Open Meetings. It was likely that Shustoke would hold an open meeting again next year.
  2. Other Business
    In order to try to resolve the issues with the Trio rules the secretary sent out the following e-mail to all Trio owning members of the CCCA on 15 Aug 20.
    I’m pleased to let you know that over the last 2 weeks discussions between Peak Dinghies and North Sails were being held about the production of a Mk1 mainsail.  I received notice yesterday afternoon that North Sails will produce a Mk1 white dacron mainsail.  This, together with the existing North jib and the Code Zero spinnaker will provide a suit of sails that closely match the original Mk1 sails produced by Rowsells enabling Mk1 owners to continue to race their Trios in a Mk1 fleet.
    The Trio still needs a new set of rules reflecting the current situation and to which we can all adhere. To this end we will look to establish a small working group/sub committee to review and produce a new set of rules which will be the subject of an EGM vote of all Trio owners.  If there are any Trio owners who would be willing to serve on such a working group then I would be pleased to hear from them. 

Bob Horlock
Secretary CCCA
9 Sep 2020

Reason. The Coronavirus pandemic caused the cancellation of the AGM scheduled to take place at Llangorse SC in conjunction with the inland championships. On 26 May 20, the CCCA Committee discussed various options for holding an AGM during 2020. The ongoing uncertainty over the current pandemic led the committee to consider that holding the 2020 AGM by correspondence was the best option available.
The CCCA Constitution defines how the AGM of the CCCA shall be conducted. These procedures seek to follow the principles of the constitution (Para 7) but are adapted to allow the discussions to take place without a physical meeting.
Notice. The constitution requires at least 6 weeks written notice of the AGM to be given to members. This procedure document will be sent to all members by Sat 13 June 2020. The date of the AGM will be considered to be Saturday 25 July 2020.
Motions. Motions to be put to the AGM shall be proposed by 2 full members and submitted to the Secretary by e-mail at least 4 weeks prior to 25 Jul ie Sat 27 June 2020.
Reports. Reports from the Chairman, Secretary and Treasurer will be published on the CCCA website on 13 Jun 20. Builders reports from Peak Dinghies and Comet Dinghies will be published on the CCCA website as soon as they are available.
Support documents. Supporting documents will published on the CCCA website identified by Agenda item number as soon as they are available.
Discussions. Questions about items on the agenda shall be sent by e-mail to the Secretary, Bob Horlock at robert.horlock@sky.com. The text of the question together with the name and boat sail number of the member concerned and the response of the committee will be published on the CCCA website identified by the relevant agenda item number. Questions must be submitted before 08.00 Monday 27 July 2020. Responses from the committee will be published before 18.00 31 July 2020.
Election of Officers and Committee Members. The committee would welcome new members. Anyone wishing to stand for any of the posts identified on the agenda, should contact the Secretary.
Decisions. At the 2020 AGM decisions will be made by members voting via a survey form on the CCCA website. The survey form will be available on 31 Jul 2020. Members must vote by 7 Aug 2020 (the 2 weeks specified in CCCA Constitution Para 7e has been reduced to one week as the return will be electronic not postal). A decision to change the class rules requires a majority vote of two thirds of those that vote and is limited to full members of the CCCA owning that class of boat. The results of the voting will be published as soon after 7 Aug 2020 as possible.
Voting. Full Membership is defined by ownership of a boat of the Classes of the CCCA. Each boat is entitled to one vote. (CCCA Constitution para 4).
Quorum. A quorum is not required as all the decisions will be by return of survey form (CCCA Constitution para 7f).


Chairman’s Report

Firstly, I hope you and families are well and staying safe in these unusual times.

There are some small signs of sailing coming back to life as usual and we at Shustoke Sailing Club are back racing again whilst following strict social distance and RYA guidelines, I’ve never seen so many families sailing together especially in our Trio fleet. I hope your clubs are also now open for sailing of some sort or if not yet, I hope not too long.

It’s been disappointing start to the sailing year with the Trio’s Shustoke and Whitefriars open meetings cancelled along with the Inland championship. And any changes to our planned Nationals, scheduled at Exe Sailing Club, will be announced soon.

On the positives side, Glyn at Peak Dinghies has never been busier fulfilling orders for new Trio’s including orders from long standing Trio sailors Guy Farrant and Steve Ashford. It’s also great to see that second hand Trio’s are also still in high demand.

I’ve been delighted to see your stories and questions on the combined comet class Facebook page and I would encourage you all to post your photos of your class in action or any pre-sailing activities onto the page. Alternatively please email them to Tracie if that is easier and she will upload to the platforms.

An article about the Comet Trio was posted to Yachts and Yachting online on 1st May along with some photos and a link to a YouTube video. The video attracted 200+ views which was pleasing to note.

Looking forwards, the committee will be planning open meetings along with both the Inland and National championships for 2021.
We will also assess how we can further promote the class, along with promotion on Facebook, website and articles in various magazines other social media options are under review. The RYA Dinghy show recently announced a move to Farnborough International Exhibition and Conference Centre for 2021 and I am thinking could this be an opportunity to promote our classes…something to consider?

I would like to personally thank the wider committee team for all their support and behind the scenes activity that ensure as an association we continue to thrive. Also a special thank you to Steve Ashford, who after 12 years is standing down as webmaster and handing over the digital reins to Steve White – thank you both for the commitment shown.
Not forgetting, Glyn at Peak Dinghies and Noble Marine for supporting the class and of course I would also like to extend my thanks to the class members for your encouragement and help.

Finally, it remains for me to say it’s a pleasure to be part of an association that is both friendly and offers great sailing experiences.

Enjoy your sailing – safely

Adrian Padro

Treasurer’s Report

CCCA Accounts year ending 2019.

Current balance £4523.88 on June 1st out of which we may be taking the cost of trophies for the National championships.

The expenditure over income for the year ending 2019 is £174. This is accounted for by the cost of trophies with two categories of prizes. The other expenses have been the usual recurring ones such as the RYA affiliation fee, a small sum for the internet domain name & in addition a small donation in memory of David Talbot to the Phyllis Tuckwell hospice.

We have maintained sponsorship from Noble marine Insurance which this year was £440.

The account balance seems quite adequate at the current level.

I will be happy to answer any questions arising from the accounts.


CCCA Income & Expenditure Year Ending 2019

Dec 15Dec 16Dec 17Dec 18Dec 19

Bank Interest
Noble Marine500500500440440
Nationals surplus

Total Income £561511502444528


Dinghy Show0568000
Internet-website domain name525315484893

RYA affiliation fee120125125125130
TOTAL EXPENSES7331239448692702

SURPLUS/ deficit (£)-222-72854-248-174

Balance in Nationwide account on 13th January 2020 is £4121.68 and 01/06/20 £4523.88
Donation made in memory of David Talbot to Phyllis Tuckwell hospice
Trophy costs include new silver plaque for the Trio Nationals trophy.

Secretary’s Report

The 2019 AGM was held in conjunction with the CCCA Inlands at Llangorse Sailing Club on 4th May 2019. The minutes were published on the CCCA website in June 19. Actions arising from the AGM:

Trio Rules: Following discussion at the 2019 AGM the Committee agreed that the definition of what constituted a Trio and a Trio Mk2 would be determined solely by the type of mainsail fitted and Rowsell sails would be banned at CCCA events after 2024. This provoked heated debate on the CCCA Facebook page and as a result it was decided to revert to a previous definition of the rigs for the Trio Nationals at Brixham. Subsequently, Peak Dinghies asked North to produce a flatter cut spinnaker, the same size as the original Rowsell sail although radial cut. An informal discussion was held at the Trio Nationals on the subject and as a consequence, after considerable negotiation with Peak Dinghies, the rules were rewritten and sent to all Trio owners in draft in Dec 19.

Rename the CCCA the Trio Class Association: The committee considered the history of the CCCA, the financial contributions made by the different classes and the effect on the other classes if the Trio class withdrew from the CCCA. They unanimously agreed to retain the status quo.

At the 2019 Inlands sponsored by Noble Marine, 13 Comet Trios competed for the trophies in a mixture of strong and light breezes. 5 races were sailed over the bank holiday weekend of 4-5th May 19. With the Trios and Trio Mk2 rigs all starting together, the racing was close and exciting with at least 4 capsizes! This year it was the turn of Darren and Callum Padro from Shustoke SC to show how the Mk2 rig could be put to good effect, winning 3 races to take the title by one point from Andrew and Caroline McAusland, from Exe. The Trio fleet was shown the way by local maestro David Morgan and Lorina Walden with 5 wins from Sam and Chris Mayne from Hawley Lake in second.

The 21st Comet Trios Nationals sponsored by Noble Marine were held at Brixham YC from 2 -4th August 2019 and 18 Trios, gathered for an event held in light winds. The 10 Mk2s started first and with all 7 races sailed it went down to the last race before Adrian and Tracie Padro were crowned champions ahead of Andrew and Caroline. Racing was even closer in the Mk1 fleet but Richard Salliss and Carol Williams scored 2 firsts on the last day to pip Sam and Chris Mayne to the championship.

Bob Horlock

Report from Duo Representative

The 2020 Duo championships, scheduled for July, have been cancelled.   We will continue to hold these events at Cransley SC in order to have a reasonable fleet, mainly Cransley-based boats but with several visitors, as happened last year.   For completeness below is the report of the 2019 championships.   As you can see, although no new Duos are being built there is still a group of active Duo sailors, and we value the on-going link with other Comets boats through the CCCA, even if we don’t meet up with other classes.   We would always be happy for Versas or Zeros to sail with us at our championships.   I am willing to continue as the Duo-link person if re-elected!
Comet Duo National Championships 2019
This was the 4th year that Cransley Sailing Club has held the event and we welcomed a total of 14 boats.
The course was around as many buoys as the duty officer could get on the board and consequently one lap was between 13 and 16 minutes long, which for the wind and size of our water was using every inch of the reservoir.
There was close competitive racing throughout the fleet in all 3 races but it was carried out amicably and with lots of banter – just how it should be!  It was great to see a lot of youngsters either crewing or helming and whilst these wonderful boats are no longer being built and most are more than 20 years old, they do sail lovely and to handicap on smaller waters like Cransley.
We are hoping to get to the magical 18 boats next year so we can claim that over 10% of the built fleet attended the event – I wonder if any other class could or has claimed that!!!
Nigel Austin (Comet Duo 103)  


Comet Dinghies – Versa, Duo and Zero
I don’t know when I last wrote a report, so I thought I’d use this as an opportunity to let you know what I’ve been up to.

Firstly, I’d like to say I’m pleased how the Trio has found a new life with Glyn. It sems to be a moderate success which considering the difficult times, firstly Brexit and now Covid, is really pleasing.

I guess some of you are new owners of my old boats. A few of you have had spares and bits from me already but I’d like to reassure you that parts like masts, rigging, covers, rudders etc can still be supplied and any advice given. Sails seem to last for ages, but I’ve agreed with Rowsell Sails that they can now supply them direct to owners of Versas, Duos and Zeros.

The only dinghy that I build now is the single hander Comet which celebrates turning 40 next year! Now days only a couple are built each year but they do cost about ten times what a half decent second-hand one can be! Nearly 900 are out there so there is a reasonable business selling parts, upgrades and doing repairs.

Talking of upgrades, a couple of years ago we launched a new sail with shorter mast. Bearing in mind it’s a strict one-design, this was a tricky one but over 60 have been converted so far. The new sail has a halyard and battens, so much more convenient. The very latest development is a slab reefing version that brings the area down to 5 sq. m from 6.25 sq. m.

I nearly forgot that I did build a new Comet Zero a couple of years ago for a Comet sailor in Cornwall, but do not expect to build many more.

Second-hand Zeros, Versa’s and even older Duos still command good prices and don’t forget to call for any help or if you need parts.

Now I’m an OAP I tend to look back at the “good old days” which to me was pre- 2008. The boat shows, demo days etc were hard work but rewarding and fun. I may not build many boats nowadays but there are about 1650 I’ve built out there and the vast majority still going strong. Look after them, but always enjoy them.

Andrew Simmons. Comet Dinghies. 01769 520545
e.mail: cometdinghies@btconnect.com

Peak Dinghies – Comet Trio
I hope that you are all keeping safe and well in these difficult and unprecedented times. As I write this, we appear to be moving in the right direction and coming out of the pandemic. So, it’s good to think of good times ahead and getting back on the water and sailing with our friends.
It’s five years since we took over building the Comet Trio and so I just want to quickly run through some key milestones.
Having had the moulds for a while and with no orders for a new boat, we decided to build one with a view to taking it to the 2016 RYA Dinghy Show. The CCCA kindly agreed to have a stand and members helped to man it. A few months later Trio 500 was sold to a local authority outdoor education centre. They already had Trios and were pleased that a new one was once again an option.
At the end of August 2016, we were approached to see if we could provide a new rig for the Trio and with the help of North Sails and Selden we did this.
In the spring of 2017 Woozle (Trio 450) fitted with the new rig, went on tour and in the summer of that year Trio owners held a vote and the new rig was accepted by a two thirds majority. There quickly followed a cluster of orders from existing owners who wanted to fit the new rig to their boat.
In the spring of 2018, after a two-year gap, we sold three more Trio’s. All of course with the new rig.
In 2019, Trio no’s 504 and 505 were sold.
In 2020 so far we have five new boats either built or in build.
With a raft of boats being built of late, there has always been a new hull in both our and Woodwinds workshop. Very often when people have called in with a boat or a sail for repair, they have been drawn to the Trio asking what boat is that? Then going on to say that they have not seen one before and how much they like it. One long standing customer who had said for a long time that he did not like the Trio, came in last week and asked, “what boat is that”. When he was told that it was a Trio, he did not believe it. At least he went away with a much more positive impression of it, though has not bought one, yet!
The growth in sales of new boats is not only a good thing in itself, it also makes the holding of spares much easier. Currently we have a stock of spare spars, foils and sails. These are not massive stocks, but it is a start.
When we introduced the new rig, we explained that it would not be changed again for a long time and we still stand by that. However, we also want to listen to you the people who buy and sail our boats. One thing that people had been saying for a while was that they wanted a flatter spinnaker to complement the new one. So last autumn North produced a flatter cut spinnaker and this has been sent around the Clubs for people to try. Unfortunately, the testing has been halted during the lockdown, but hopefully that can get going again soon. When all the testing is complete and the feedback received, we will be able to make any changes and get it into production.
As I have mentioned above, the Trio would benefit from greater publicity and that is something that I want to work on. If anyone has any suggestions on how best to do this, please let me know.
Finally, thank you all for choosing to be Trio sailors, I hope you have some great days out on the water very soon.
Peak Dinghy Spares.