Sailing & Windsurfing FAQs
Do you run watersports lessons and courses at Bewl Water?
All RYA watersports lessons and courses are run by the Bewl Outdoor Centre who can be reached on 03000 41 52 00.
Do you hire out kayaks, paddleboards or sailing boats?
We don’t have any paddle boards or Kayaks to hire, Bewl water hire pedalos and rowing boats.
I have my own sailing boat, windsurf or paddleboard do I need a membership to access the water?
Yes, there are two options in which you can access the water. You can purchase a day launch pass from the fishing lodge on the day or you can obtain an annual membership, please fill out a membership form on the page.
Then drop it into our fishing lodge 7 days a week between 10-4pm.
Do I need a qualification to sail at Bewl Water?
Yes, you must possess a RYA Level 2 certificate to sail or windsurf at Bewl a copy of your certificate will be taken at the point of membership purchase.
When does your annual membership run from/until?
Our annual term of membership runs from April 1st – March 31st.
I have my own kayak do I need a membership to access the water?
Yes, you are able to gain access through purchasing a day launch pass in the fishing lodge, you will be asked to fill out a day membership form. Annual memberships must be purchased through the Bewl Canoe Club at https://www.bewlcanoeclub.co.uk/
Do you allow inflatable kayaks?
Inflatable kayaks are not permitted on the reservoir.
Do you offer discounted membership?
We offer subsidies for junior members and disabled members.
Do I need insurance to enter the water?
All crafts entering the water under day or annual membership must possess public liability insurance, you will be asked to present a copy of your insurance certificate prior taking out the membership. This must be done privately by the customer, we do not sell insurance.
Do I need to let you know when I am entering /leaving the water?
Yes, you must sign in / sign out in the club room which is located next to the fishing lodge.
Can I swim from my craft?
No, swimming in the reservoir is strictly prohibited.
Do I need to wear a lifejacket on the water?
Yes, you will need to supply your own lifejacket.
Can I store my boat or windsurf at Bewl Water?
Yes, sailing boat and windsurfing locker storage can be purchased through the membership form and spaces will be allocated through the fishing shop staff. We have a limited number of windsurf lockers available, to enquire please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Do you run sailing events?
We host many sailing events throughout the year, these are run by the Bewl Sailing Association, further information can be found on their website at https://www.bewlsailing.club/
How do we display that we are paid members?
At the point of membership purchase you be given a boat sticker to display on the boat and car parking pass to be displayed on the dashboard of your car.
Do watersports members have to pay for parking?
No, parking is included in your membership purchase.
Can we do kitesurfing, Jet Ski or wakeboarding at Bewl Water?
These activities are not currently permitted.
Where do we launch our craft onto the water?
Sailing boats must be launched from the sailing slipway next to the boathouse, paddleboards, kayaks and windsurfs must be launched from the beach area next to the fishing jetty.
Are powered boats permitted on the reservoir?
We do not allow any customer owned powered boats onto the reservoir.
Open Water Swimming FAQs
Do we need to book?
No you can just turn up on the day and register at reception.
How much is a session?
£7.00 per person.
Do you do block bookings?
Yes, block bookings can be done on the NOWCA website.
I have been open water swimming before will I be briefed on what to do and what to look out for?
Yes, we run a thorough safety brief before the swim.
Is there an open water coach at the sessions?
No, not at present, but all sessions are staffed by fully trained lifeguards.
What is the distance of the open water course?
The course is 400 meters.
Can I swim anywhere in Bewl Water?
No, only in the open water sessions that are run by Bewl Water.
Are the sessions age restricted?
Yes, the minimum age is 10. Any person under the age of 15 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
Can I wear my own wetsuit?
Yes, but it must be cleaned in a dip barrel before use in our reservoir, this is in conjunction with Southern Water’s cross contamination guidelines.
Do you sell or hire wetsuits?
Yes, you can hire a Bewl Water wetsuit from reception.
Do I have to wear a wetsuit?
No, not if you are an experienced open water swimmer, but we would advise novice swimmers to wear one.
Is the water tested for harmful bacteria?
Yes, the water is tested monthly by Southern Water.
Is there parking?
Yes, there is ample parking on site.
Is there a café?
Yes, there is a Bistro and a pop up café that will sell hot/cold drinks and cakes.
Are there lifeguards present?
Lifeguards will be present at all times during the open water swim session.
Do you use a system to log my swims/times?
Yes, we use NOWCA which costs £12 a year to register. You can download the app to your phone and log all your swim venues and times via a wrist swim tracker which is free when you register.
I have left my NOWCA band at home, can I still swim?
That’s not a problem as long as you have a NOWCA profile we can assign a temporary band so you can still enjoy your swim.
Can I just turn up and swim?
Yes, but you will need to log onto the NOWCA app and join as an open water swim member.
What swim ability must I be before I can swim?
All abilities are welcome. However, you must be able to swim 400 meters continuously in a pool. There is a safety briefing that explains and outlines the dos and don’ts, and we introduce you to the water slowly so you can acclimatise to the temperature ready for your swim.
I have road rash can I still swim?
It depends on how fresh the wound is. We advise no one swims with open wounds. If you cut yourself in the water or while you are getting out, clean the wound with fresh water.
Are there changing rooms with hot showers?
Yes we have male and female changing rooms, both with hot showers.
When do the pedalos and rowing boats run?
You can hire rowing boats and pedalos from us during our high season from April – September at weekends and seven days a week through the summer holidays in August. Boats are available to hire from 11am - 5pm.
How much are the pedalos and rowing boats?
All our hire boats are £10 per boat for 30 minutes.
What is the maximum number of people allowed in a pedalo or rowing boat?
Our boats can seat a maximum of 4 persons.
Are dogs allowed in the boats?
We allow well behaved dogs into the boats, providing they are kept on a lead at all times.
Can we swim from the boats?
No, we do not allow swimming in the reservoir.
When is the last time I can hire a boat in the day?
Our last boats are available to hire at 4.30 pm, in high summer this may be a little later.
Can I pre book a hire boat?
No, boats are available on a first come first served basis from 11-5pm.
Do we have to wear lifejackets?
It is mandatory to wear a life vest on our hire boats, these are supplied by Bewl Water at the point of hire.
Can we take a boat around the reservoir?
Boats and Pedalos operate in a safe, managed zone and must remain within the operational area at all times.
Can we drink alcohol on the boats?
Food and drink are not permitted on the boats or pedalos. Any customers under the influence of alcohol or drugs will be refused hire of any craft.
What is the minimum age to hire a boat?
There must be somebody in the boat above the age of 16.