Royal appointment for Sevenoaks sailor
Royal appointment for Sevenoaks sailor

A Sevenoaks sailor will be presented with one of the Royal Yachting Association’s (RYA) most prestigious awards by HRH the Princess Royal, President of the RYA in recognition of his commitment to the British Schools Dinghy Racing Association.

Bruce Hebbert was nominated for a Lifetime Commitment Award by the association and selected as a winner by the RYA Honours and Awards Panel. It will be presented at One Great George Street, London on Friday 22 November.

The RYA is boating’s national governing body and the Volunteer Awards are considered the ‘MBEs’ of the sport, honouring people throughout the UK for their outstanding contributions across all the disciplines the RYA represents, including sailing, windsurfing, motor cruising, inland waterways and personal watercraft.

Bruce was one of the founding teachers of the British Schools Dinghy Racing Association 30 years ago, and a driving force behind UK team racing, providing consistent support to schools and universities in organising and running their events. His work greatly contributed to the modern form of team racing, umpiring and the Call Book.

More recently he developed the 2k Team Racing circuit which now runs events across the world, providing fun competitive racing and ensuring that once students leave university there is a route to keep them within the sport.

A member of the Royal Thames Yacht Club, he actively helps to run a number of their events and coordinate umpires, and he is also a key founding partner of Wealden Sailability in Chipstead.

The impact that Bruce has had on the sport over the decades is immeasurable. From coaching to umpiring to advice and support, there are few sailors of any level, background or skillset who have not, in one way or another, been influenced by his involvement.

On hearing that he had been selected for the award Bruce succinctly said: “Thank you, very honoured.”

For more information about the RYA Volunteer Awards visit

Find out more about British Schools Dinghy Racing Association