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Picture of Malcolm Leckie

Malcolm Leckie

Longcraig Lead

Porpoises

After an absence of some 15 years or more, we had several sightings of porpoises near Longcraig over the first weekend in June. The first sighting was made by a very observant Gide Leader who was visiting along with a group of Brownies and guides, A short time after, one porpoise leapt straight out of the water, and a small school of them (at least two, possibly more) were sighted playing in the waves between our pier and Inchgarvie Island. It was a very gentle breeze and a calm sea, so they were easily spotted. 

The following day, there were once again several limited sightings of them, although the sea was much more unsettled, and it was quite windy. It’s great to see these sea creatures back again – their presence is a good indication that the water in the Firth of Forth is fairly clean, so that’s always a good thing!

NOT at Longcraig, but this is what they would look like. Photo courtesy of the Whale and Dolphin Conservation

NOT at Longcraig, but this is what they would look like.
Photo courtesy of the Whale and Dolphin Conservation

We’ve reported the sightings to the Whale & Dolphin Trust so we should now appear as a dot on their sightings map of the waters around Scotland.

2024 Summer Months – July, August, even into September……

There are still plenty of opportunities to get some activity bookings at Longcraig in the summer months – especially for small or medium size groups. Check our bookings calendar on the website for up to the minute availability, or email us if you have some specific questions – bookings@longcraig.info.

We can offer taster sessions, badge training or assessments, or complete training courses for sailing certificates or paddling certificates.

Especially during the summer holiday months, Longcraig can sometimes be a good venue for a BBQ or a day out by the seaside, with all the things that entails. Check us out or get in touch to find out how we may be able to help you plan your event.

DID YOU KNOW? You can hire a lot of our equipment during the summer for your own activities (provided there is someone competent in charge) – such as kayaks, paddleboards, Topper and Pico dinghies and such like. We can even do just buoyancy aids or wetsuits if that’s what you need! Get in touch and see how we can help.

Journey to Net Zero

What is Net Zero?

The term net zero means achieving a balance between the carbon emitted into the atmosphere, and the carbon removed from it. This balance – or net zero – will happen when the amount of carbon we add to the atmosphere is no more than the amount removed. (source: Energy Saving Trust)

Latest update

The final phase of our Journey to Net Zero is starting to fall into place. We had to apply to the electricity network provider (Scottish Power) for permission to install solar panels before we could even start! This permission was granted at the end of May, so our contractor is now preparing to gather the material together and arrange for installation. We are planning that this will be in early July – we have a relatively quiet spell then after a busy June, so they can get on with the work unhindered.

So, by some point a little later in July, our project should be complete!

We’ll provide a full report in the next Newsletter, showing this final phase, and also some details of the benefits what have been gained form this activity.

DATES FOR YOUR DIARY

Leaders Day

Saturday 20th July

Calling all adult leaders and Members –

  • Did you ever wish you could get out on the water to do some activities but there wasn’t space?

Or – you didn’t really want to when your Young People were around??

Or – you’ve never really had or taken the opportunity?

Come down to longcraig and have a go at any of our activities – kayaking, paddleboarding, dinghy sailing (single, crewed or longboat), powerboats, even rafting.

We’ll have our whole kit available throughout the day (open form 11am through to 5pm to take best advantage of the tides) so you can get out on the water for a short try, a longer float about, or a good proper activity session for as long as we can all manage.

We’ll have the BBQ running throughout the day for some sustenance, and of course there’ll be tea, coffee and light refreshments available too.

Formal Opening/Dedication of the Facilities Upgrade and Net Zero

Wednesday 28th August

Training Opportunities

Paddleboard training /Assessment Day

We are planning to run a Paddleboard training /Assessment Day sometime during the summer. The date has not been fixed yet with the Assessors, but for anyone interested in finding out more, please get in touch and give us your details so we can let you know as arrangements firm up: getinvolved@longcraig.info

Safety Boat Training Course

Safety Boat Training Course (leads to RYA Safety Boat Certificate) 5th and 6th October – 2 days course. Pre-requisite for this course is Powerboat level 2 and a reasonable number of logged hours driving powerboats in varying conditions.

Powerboat Level 2 Course

Powerboat Level 2 Course (one weekend) planned for later in the year (October/November timescale)

This can be a follow up to a Powerboat 1 Course or it can be done directly. It is a necessary pre-qualification for anyone seeking to do the Safety Boat course (see above)

For information on, or to register an interest in, any of these courses please contact us at getinvolved@longcraig.info

Volunteering?

As the demand for our activities grows and we constantly seek to expand what we can offer, we need more volunteers to help us implement our plans.

Ther are two distinct types of volunteers that we can effectively make use of:

Type 1

These volunteers are the people who make the centre operate. We have spaces for:

  • Skilled water activity people who could lead activities on the water.
  • Semi-skilled people who have some skills, but we can help develop those to a level where they can lead activities.
  • People with some skills to lead our shore-based activities (for bad weather days or to expand the operations of the centre)
  • Volunteers who can help in a number of ways ‘behind the scenes’ – with e.g. finance, marketing, recruitment, maintenance, boat or building repairs.

Please simply contact us at getinvolved@longcraig.info with your details.

We’ve set aside the following dates where we will hold an introduction session to welcome any potential new volunteers and explain further what wed o and how you can get involved:

Saturday 6th July 11am

Monday 19th August 7pm

We’ll take care of the rest!

Do you have any parents in your Group who might be interested in this? Please do let them know!!

Type 2

We can also offer a different type of volunteering, which is to provide an opportunity for groups of adults, scouts or explorers to come along during the ‘closed’ season and give us the benefit of your volunteering – this could be just for one event, or it could be – say – once a month for a period of time.

This can count to a number of outcomes, such as DofE volunteering, various scout badges and awards, or simply to lend a hand for a few hours. Things you might get involved in could be checking of buoyancy aids, fixing boats, painting, and decorating some parts of the centre which were not impacted by the recent building improvements, beach protection work, or behind the scenes stuff like preparing our land activity kits.

If you’re interested, please get in touch to make arrangements or discuss further.

Whatever you have planned, have a great summer!