Annalong Canoe and Kayak club was established around 30 years ago by Norman Newell who is now the scout leader for the club and a teacher at Kilkeel high school.
The club will usually meet in Annalong. There is no definite meeting point as there is no clubhouse.
Membership of the club is very cheap, only costing each member £10 per annum. Annalong is a small club consisting of 26 members, made up mostly by male members however there are some female members. Most members are adult males however the club does have a good junior section, having 10 members aged between 10 and 20, four of which are female.
The club has the equipment for members to use such as boats etc. Therefore members will not have to purchase their own equipment and will have free use of the clubs equipment. The club will also cater for those members who suffer from disabilities however as they are only a small club they will not have any specialist equipment.
Training session take place every Tuesday at 8.15 at Kilkeel swimming pool from October to March. In the summer there is also a paddle that will take place once a month and members will take part in either open canoeing sea, white-water or surf kayaking, however this will be weather dependent. Beginners are encouraged come to the pool sessions where they can learn the necessary paddling skills before going out on one of the clubs monthly paddles. Training sessions come at a low cost of only £4 for adults, and £2.50 for juniors. As all members take place in the same sessions, there will be enough adults to watch over the junior members, therefore parents do not need to be present during the sessions.
The club organises one big trip each year in which members travel to various European destinations. In the past the club has travelled to Sweden, Hebrides and Shetland however the club will not cover the cost for the trip and will be at the member’s expense. The club will also have a trip away every weekend to different parts of the country for members to participate in.
The club participates in a variety of different disciplines of canoeing and kayaking. This includes open canoeing, sea, white-water and surf kayaking which all members can participate in. The club is purely a recreational club where members meet and paddle purely for fun rather than take to part in competitions. The club welcomes any new members and encourages anyone interested in joining Annalong to come along, and take part in one of the pool sessions.