Welcome to HLSC

HLSC welcomes complete beginners to experienced sailors. Dinghy sailing takes place on a 117 acre reservoir set in the foothills of the Pennines in Littleborough near Rochdale and is easily accessible; just 10 minutes from the M62, junction 21.

HLSC is run by its members for its members with a great family atmosphere, has good fleet racing, is committed to training & developing sailing skills and is an accredited RYA Training Centre.

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Having recently completed a major clubhouse upgrade, HLSC now has modern and smart facilities thanks to generous support from the Sport England Inspired Facilities fund and a number of our own club members.SE_Lottery_Inspired-by-2012





GP14 2014 UK Youth Championship
1st – 2nd November 2014

The Event Documents (Notice Of Race, Sailing Instructions, Entry Form & Online Entry) for the GP14 UK Youth Championship can all be found on the GP14 Class Association website so please click here which is a hyperlink to all these Event Documents.

For those requiring overnight accommodation / camping facilities, please click here to go to the Visit Rochdale website.

An aerial photograph and a plan of the lake showing the approximate positions of our club marks can be viewed in The Lake section (under About Us) of this website.


Merlin Rocket Open Meeting
11th – 12th October 2014

David Winder and Pippa Taylor were the decisive winners of the Silver Tiller Open at Hollingworth Lake, for the Felucca Trophy.

22 boats, of which 11 were visitors, entered despite a poor forecast for wind strength. The schedule was for 3 races on Saturday and 2 on Sunday. After a short postponement on Saturday, the Race Officer decided that there was enough wind from a westerly direction to start racing. Although shifty, the wind held to give testing windward legs and hiking conditions at times for the helm, at least.

The first race set off with a clear start. There was a close pack round the windward mark where Nick Heginbotham and Jane Clayton had the lead. The following reach led to a mark where difficult decisions were made. Some gybed on to the run while others held on starboard. This tactical run gave David Winder the chance to hold to the Lake shore and break through at the leeward mark. Richard Whitworth, with long experience of the Lake, and Caroline Croft secured second place with Heginbotham holding on to third. Winder went on to secure an unassailable lead. Matt Biggs and John Hackett challenged but had to accept fourth place.

Race 2 inevitably suffered a recall and a black flag was signalled after an adjustment to the start line. This kept the fleet in order. This time, although Winder was the early leader, Jen Taylor and Chris Dodds found a good track up the first beat and were ready for the chase and held their second place. Behind them Heginbotham had to work hard to keep Andy ‘Taxi’ Davis and Alex Warren behind. Another local sailor, Julian Parry with Becca Jones had a better race and took fifth place.

Following a lunch break, the third race had a new leader. Having retired during the second race, Ben Hollis and Joe Tosh were sufficiently refreshed and led from the first mark. Behind them was veteran Guy Winder and Tom Murphy, nicely ahead of son David. Hollis’s lead was insecure from the harrying pack behind and Guy Winder briefly took the lead. With much place changing Taxi gained the lead on the second lap but David Winder was pressing hard while others including Heginbotham and Steve Crook with Sally Townend were also in the frame. During the third and final lap David Winder got the advantage on Taxi to score his third win.

The fleet were all conscious that the forecast for Sunday included morning fog and very still conditions until midday at least. However, there was the usual excellent dinner to enjoy and socialise. So, it was not unexpected that racing was postponed at first on Sunday and, with no sign of likely wind developing, the cancellation flag was flown. So David Winder and Pippa Taylor were the very clear winners of the Felucca Trophy.


Twenty Lasers from 12 different locations find keeping up with the Jones’s can be quite a challenge

On Saturday 27th September 20 Lasers from 12 different locations assembled at Hollingworth under blue skies with no wind. OOD Dave Smith delayed proceedings until a light westerly filled in from the forecast direction. In the first race a group of four boats broke away from the pack with Ian Jones leading the way, finishing first with Ian Lees second and Wendy Jones third.

After lunch the wind increased and moved to the SW giving better conditions, however after the start the wind tracked to the right giving starboard bias beats. Graham MacWhirter established an early lead chased by Ian Jones and these two opened out from the pack, doubling their lead on the run. Oliver Whitehead, from the home club, sailed clear into third place and the leading boats finished in that order with Graham narrowly in front of Ian at the finish line.

With a first and second Ian Jones had wrapped up the meeting however this did not stop him from stamping his authority on the fleet in the third race sailed in a lightening wind, by choosing the right shifts to establish a narrow lead in the early stages from Ian Lees. These two were joined by David Gambol and Wendy Jones to form a small breakaway group, though the main pack were not far behind. Ian Jones kept his lead taking line honours with Wendy Jones showing great speed in the light conditions finishing closely behind and Ian Lees coming in, in third place.

Overall, Ian and Wendy Jones were first and second respectively with Ian Lees and Graham MacWhirter third and fourth, showing that keeping up with the Jones’s can be quite a challenge at times !!

Click here to view the full results: HLSC Laser Open Meeting results – Saturday 27th September 2014


Sailing News!

19th October 2014
by Graham Knox

After the calm of the previous weekend, the strong gusty winds of Sunday were quite a shock. Capsizes were always likely. Five Solos set out to race, plus a lone GP14, but only 2 Solos survived the first one and just 1 the second race. Chris Massey, an experienced sailor and member of Dovestone Sailing Club, has joined the Club for a taste of Solo sailing and showed an ability to master it.

Martin Brennan and Alastair Knott upheld the honour of the GP14s. Racing was abandoned after 2 races.

There were other boats out not racing. Teenager Craig Broadbent took young Emma Coffey out for the experience and stayed upright after some fast and wet planing reaches.

On Saturday, the Water Activity Centre’s Club held its end of season Regatta in breezy conditions.This was won by young Adam Din in a Pico.

Race 1: 1.C Massey 2.M Smith
Race 2: 1.C Massey


11th - 12th October 2014
by Graham Knox

11 visitors were welcomed to compete over the weekend, with 11 club boats out, for the annual Felucca Trophy for Merlin Rockets. Despite a poor forecast for wind over the weekend, racing got underway on Saturday, after a short delay to allow the light westerly wind to settle.

Three races were sailed and David Winder with Pippa Taylor, from the home club, always found a way through to lead. In many past years it was always Richard Whitworth, now based down south, who won. Apart from a second place in the first race, he had to settle for 5th place overall.

However, Nick Heginbotham and Jane Clayton enjoyed excellent results to finish 3rd overall, while visitor Andy Davis and Alex Warren came in as runners up to David Winder. There should have been 2 more races on Sunday but the very still conditions after the fog had lifted meant that sailing was not practical.


5th October 2014
by Graham Knox

Sunday at the Lake gave racers an excellent afternoon with warm sunshine and a south westerly breeze to provide ideal conditions. Accordingly there was a good turnout with close racing in the three main fleets.

Mike Smith was in good form finding the way to lead the Solos.
In the GP14s, young Craig Broadbent and Harry Daniel chased hard but were overtaken by John Mellor and Katie Doherty in the first race but made sure of the win in the second one.

Although Steve Crook and SallyTownend won all the Merlin Rocket races, they had to work hard to achieve this result with strong competition from the other boats.


Merlin Rocket-
Race 1: 1. S Crook/S Townend 2. L Bithell/L Ashworth 3. M & R Watts
Race 2: 1. S Crook/S Townend 2. N Brook/R Bramwell 3. L Bithell/L Ashworth
Race 3: 1 S Crook/S Townend 2. L Bithell/L Ashworth 3. N Brook/R Bramwell
Race 1: 1. J Mellor/K Doherty 2. C Broadbent/H Daniel 3.R Mason/N Thomason
Race 2: 1. C Broadbent/H Daniel 2. J Mellor/K Doherty 3.R Mason/N Thomason
Race 3: 1. W & D Smith

Race 1: 1. M Smith 2. D Hughes 3. R Simpson
Race 2: 1. M Smith 2. N Davey 3. R Long
Race 3: 1. N Davey 2. R Long 3. D Hughes

Race 1: 1.E Parry
Race 2: 1.M Rush


28th September 2014

by Graham Knox

Lovely blue skies and a calm Lake greeted sailors on Sunday. They set out to try and race and found some patches of wind, at least the water was lightly ruffled. Alastair Knott in a borrowed Solo got away in front in the first race while others, missing the magic wind, struggled far behind. Martin and Rene Watts in a Merlin Rocket held the lead for most of the first race, but were thwarted of victory in the closing stages by Nick Heginbotham and daughter Lucy. However, they went on to take the other two race wins.

On Saturday, a group of the Club’s keen young sailors went to a rainy Glossop for an OnBoard Fun day.


Merlin Rocket-
Race 1: 1. N & L Heginbotham 2.M & R Watts 3.T Murphy/G Winder
Race 2: 1.M & R Watts 2. T Murphy/G Winder 3. G Whitehead/C Essex
Race 3: 1 M & R Watts 2. N & L Heginbotham. 3. G Whitehead/C Essex

Race 1: 1 W & D Smith 2.R Mason/J Dobbs
Races 2 & 3: 1. R Mason/J Dobbs

Race 1: 1. A Knott 2. K Parry 3. A Taylor
Race 2: 1. K Parry
Race 3: 1. O Whitehead

Race 1: 1.E Parry
Race 1: 1.A Din

Race 2: 1.R Din


21st September 2014
by Graham Knox

On Sunday, the Lake Sailing Club joined some 700 other clubs in 68 countries to run a race for ‘Bart’s Bash’, in memory of the late Andrew Simpson. 28 boats took to the water to race and donate money to the foundation in ‘Bart’s’ memory. The results will be sorted by computer on the global basis to qualify for the Guinness World Record. In the light northerly wind, it was always likely that the Merlin Rockets would do well and Steve Crook with Sally Townend won the race, ahead of Bruce Mager and Rosie Richards.

Martin Brennan and Alastair Knott upheld the GP14 honour with third place.
Two further races were sailed in the usual way.

On Saturday, the Club held a successful Training Day for potential new members.
Over the weekend, at the Solo Inland Championship on Rutland Water, Steve Denison finished 8th and David Winder 13th, after being on winning form on the Saturday.


Merlin Rocket-
Race 2: 1.S Crook/S Townend 2.L Bithell/L Ashworth 3.J & Z Parry
Race 3: 1.L Bithell/L Ashworth 2.S Crook/S Townend 3.J & Z Parry

Races 2 & 3: 1. M Brennan/A Knott 2.M Butler/S Caladine 3.C Knott/R Long

Race 2: 1.O Whitehead 2.D Hughes 3.R Simpson
Race 3: 1.D Hughes 2.G Whitehead 3.D Smith

Race 2: 1.R Whitehill 2.E Parry 3.H Daniel
Race 3: 1.H Daniel

RS Feva-
Race 2: 1.W Rowland


14th September 2014
by Graham Knox

Over the past weekend, the Sailing Club entered a team in the annual 24 Hour Race at Southport. This was sailed in very light conditions with the wind coming across the town which made for many wind ‘shadows’ across the Lake. The Club finished 32nd out of 64 teams.

Meanwhile at the Lake on Sunday it was the Solo fleet that was out in force. David Winder was in great form winning the first 2 races by a large margin.

This Sunday the Club will be participating in a planned world record race. Andrew ‘Bart’ Simpson, an Olympic sailor was tragically drowned in the pre-race series for the America’s Cup. In his memory, Clubs around the world are racing, with results to be combined, to create a World Record sailing race and raise funds for the foundation in Bart’s memory. The race is called ‘Bart’s Bash’.

Races 1 & 2: 1. J Mellor/K Doherty

Race 1: 1.D Winder 2.N Davey 3.D Smith
Race 2: 1.D Winder 2.G Hughes 3.N Davey
Race 3: 1.G Hughes 2.D Smith 3.K Parry

Race 1: 1.W Smith