TWO community clubs on the water have joined forces to give more people the chance to enjoy the Flashes, writes Jack Heale.

Mid Cheshire Stand Up Paddleboarding Club have signed a five-year deal to unite with Winsford Sailing Club as a group member.

It will enable members to enjoy the sailing club’s facilities, the adjoining River Weaver system and all other aspects of the two clubs that have tied together.

Brian Cadwallader, chairman of Mid Cheshire SUP, explained how the agreement to merge the clubs came about.

“I think they were aware of us, and we were aware of them and we never really got to talk,” he said.

“One of their members, who was also a paddleboarder, mentioned it and that’s really how it started.

“We use the same water as them, but it wasn’t until one of the members approached the Commodore really and said ‘you might want to contact Mid Cheshire SUP’.

“Just a couple of emails, we had a meeting, and we got a very warm welcome from the sailing club.

“I put it out to our club members – we have 100 – asking their opinion, would they like to go go into partnership with the sailing club? Unanimously they all said it would be a great idea.”

Cadwallader is excited as to what the move can bring to the people of Winsford and beyond, with national lockdown restrictions also now easing.

“We had our first paddle last Thursday evening, all Covid safe in pods of six. We are looking forward to opening up properly, especially in June,” he added.

“More importantly, from my point of view really is the amalgamation of community clubs in the area. It can only be a good thing for local people.”

He continued: “The waters are getting busier. More people are out there paddling and sailing.

“We are community clubs. Although there is a membership, local people can apply.

“Mid Cheshire SUP is also an accredited stand-up paddleboard school. We are also in partnership with the Canal & River Trust as well because we’ve adopted the river from the marina down to Newbridge.

“The sailing club is interested in that as well, about the environmental issues. There’s a lot of crossover in what they achieve and what we’re achieving to the benefit of the environment and the local people.”