Lough Derg Yacht Club (LDYC) was formed in 1835, making it one of the oldest in this country. The first Annual Regatta was held the following year, and we have regatta programmes of most regattas held since then. The Club was based in Dromineer Bay, and for many years racing was conducted from Kilteelah Quay. There were no racing dinghies as we know them at that time, and all the vessels involved were fairly substantial yachts belonging to many of the landowners around Lough Derg. All communications were by flags, and competition was keen.
Towards the end of the 19th Century people started experimenting with smaller sailing boats, but it was 1920 before there were any big changes. That year saw the emergence of the Shannon One Design 18’ open dinghy (with one sail and three crew members), which proved to be a successful racing dinghy, and is still a very competitive all timber class today, a true classic still actively raced and sailed on the Shannon. A local fishing club initiated the other important change by inviting LDYC to share their Clubhouse and amalgamate our collective membership. We have remained on the same premises ever since, and the Club still has a strong fishing element.
After a six-year gap (due to the ‘Emergency’ as World War II was known in neutral Ireland) racing started again in 1946 and there were many new faces. Dinghy Week was held there in 1950, but the main events have always been the week long Regattas held in both Loughs Ree and Derg during the month of August. Junior Sailing Courses began to take off in the 1970s and Membership numbers increased. Urgent repairs to the old Clubhouse were needed in the 1980’s and the Club started hosting more outside events as well as its members travelling all over the country to other championships.