The County of Sussex Coat of Arms has been with us since at least 1622


It has six martlets depicted on a shield with a blue background and this was the inspiration for the design of the Club Burgee

The Sussex Motor Yacht Club Burgee shows the six martlets and a propellor shown on a white shield against a royal blue background.

Martlets are heraldic birds and represent a stylized swallow with short tufts of feathers in place of legs. Martlet is an old-fashioned word for Martin. Swallows and Swifts were also once called martlets; they have such small legs that they were believed to have none at all.

The inability of the Swift to land is often seen to symbolize the British Bulldog character that has inspired the British in their constant search for adventure, knowledge and learning.

This is how the founders and early supporters of SMYC saw themselves at the dawn of the 20th Century. For SMYC, technology lead the way with the development of the big petrol engines and the quest for speed. It excited many of the Nobility and wealthy of the day to become members and to support the Club by the donation of many trophies and financial support. Hugh Grosvenor 2nd Duke of Westminster was our Commodore for ten years and even David, Prince of Wales was a strong supporter. In 1931 he gave us the magnificent Britania Challenge Trophy as to a prize for motorboat racing on the river Thames.

Now, in 2018 while remembering our proud past, we want to become known for a different reason. The Green Agenda is now at last, at the forefront of everyone’s mind. We want to use our history, our Trophies and our efforts to promote this Green Agenda wherever we can.

Capt. James Humphrys our Commodore is the Southern Area Director for the Environment Agency. His daily life is spent on all things Green in our area, and he is the perfect person to lead SMYC in our 21st Century quest to protect and defend our coastline and seas. https://uk.linkedin.com/in/james-humphrys-9246a48

In 1909 SMYC was granted an Admiralty warrant for members to wear the Blue Ensign. This great privilege endures to this day and is an important recognition of the things the members of SMYC contributed to in the past.

If you are up for the challenge to make a difference to water sport, clean oceans and the protection of our seas and coastlines. We would love to hear from you.

Membership is open to all from every walk of life and from everywhere at home or abroad. You do not have to own a boat, social membership is available, the members will make sure you get some sea time in.

If you honestly wish to help have some fun and sail under the Blue Ensign come and join us.

See the membership page for an application.


Andrew Fuller

Vice Commodore

John Sheffield

Honorary Secretary

Nigel Dalby

Rear Commodore

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