The Heron is a two person dinghy that is sailed across the U.K with a particularly active fleet at Chipstead Sailing Club.
The Heron was designed in the early 1950s by Jack Holt in the UK and the class has made its way internationally with a huge following in Australia.
The Heron offers safe entry level sailing for novices but also provides an ongoing challenge for experienced sailors who are seeking to optimise performance. There is a wide range of events run across the year throughout the U.K and there is good competition at Open Events.
The Heron can be built in timber (using traditional framing or stitch and glue construction), FRP or Composite (a mixture of wood and FRP). Butler Boats in the North of England are still making and selling many new Herons and these can be purchased directly from them. Due to the age of the design, many boats become available frequently second hand and provide a cost effective way to get into sailing.
The Heron has a long and proud history of family involvement. Many of the past class national championships have been won by parent/child crew combinations. A number of sailors who crewed in the Heron in the past have returned to the class with their own children to share the family sailing experience.
Equally, the Heron is often sailed single handed and is easy to sail with one person.
There is also an association who promote the Heron both nationally and internationally and it is free to join for 2017.
It is a traditional boat, with a traditional look, but there is nothing wrong with that. It is not a piece of slim line plastic with a sail and offers good stable fun.
There is a move across the sport for single handed sailing in racier little boats, but the fun is really sailing with a crew and getting out on the water together. Joint experiences are much more rewarding than single ones.
Class Association www.heron-dinghy.org.uk