Want to join a dive club? In this new series, we take a look at grassroots diving and find out what’s happening on the club scene in the UK and around the world…
What is the name of your club?
East Midlands Sub Aqua Club or EMSUB – BSAC 1663.
Where is your club based?
In Long Eaton, between Derby and Nottingham.
Club affiliations (i.e. BSAC, PADI, SAA, etc.)
We are a BSAC Branch but many of our current members started with other training bodies.
Where and when do you meet?
We meet at the Wilsthorpe Tavern in Long Eaton every Tuesday at 8.00 pm, except for the third Tuesday of the month when we meet at Lonsdale pool in Derby.
How do you respond to the challenge of recruiting new members?
We take stalls at local fetes and galas. We have run ‘Dive in a Bucket’ sessions with local scout groups and we also have a regular spot in a local magazine.
Some members have been interviewed on local radio and members put up posters at work and in their local area. We also sell try-dive gift vouchers.
What facilities and resources does the club use / have?
At the pub we have the sole use of a room for meetings and training lectures on a Tuesday. We are lucky also to have a member who lets us use a training room that is part of his business at the weekends.
We have around eight sets of scuba kit in a range of sizes suitable for pool work and open water dives. New trainees use the kit for their training sessions and look after them whilst training, which gives them good instruction on how to care for kit. Some of the kit can also be borrowed for dives if any of the club have their own kit in for testing.
We are also very lucky that one of our members owns a rib and he is always keen for people to go along on trips.
Our best resource are the trainers and members within the club; we all work together to help each other and to offer new trainees the best experience we can.
What sort of diving do you do, and where?
Shore diving, rib diving, hard boats, at sea and in quarries. We do lots of UK diving and have had many trips abroad. We particularly enjoy St Abb and the Farne Islands but also North and South Wales, Plymouth; from the south coast up to the Orkneys!
We’ve also recently completed a dry dive at the Midlands Chamber. It was fascinating to see everyone’s reactions at 50m and also to learn about the other work the Chamber do that is not just diving related.
Do you organise any club trips abroad, and if so, where?
As a club we have been to Spain, Egypt and Malta. Lanzarote has been booked for later this year.
Some of the club have been lucky enough to travel to Cyprus, Gozo, Thailand, Turkey, Mozambique, Cayman Islands, Roatan, Tobago, Grenada and Sudan.
Does your club have any special interests such as conservation, special projects etc?
There are many interests within the club with probably photography, history and conservation being the top three.
Does your club have any claims to fame or any particularly interesting stories… or members
Linda and Caroline organised the first East Midlands ‘This Girl Can Dive’ event in October 2015. This was a try-dive session aimed at getting 100 women to give a try-dive a go, in conjunction with This Girl Can and BSAC. We had 101 women sign up for the day and raised money for Ovarian Cancer and the RNLI. We had a lot of publicity around the Derby and Nottingham area and appeared in the newspapers and on the radio.
We have had BSAC’s youngest Ocean Diver qualify with us, aged only 12. His Dad was a member of the club when it first started 28 years ago – he was very young at the time too. And to keep on with the family theme, we have three generations of the same family in the club. They created quite a stir when the Grandson decided he wanted to learn to dive and Grandad came along with him and signed up for the Ocean Diver course aswell. Grandad learnt to dive aged 71 so he had his own write up in the papers…. the story continued when Dad and another Grandson joined too.
What are the club’s plans for the future?
To carry on diving and enjoying ourselves within the club and to carry on training and supporting our new members. It’s great to see people’s confidence grow as they learn new skills. It is a very supportive club.
Where can people find out more about your club
Finally… if you could sum up your club in just one sentence, what would it be?
A fab, fun and friendly group of people waiting to meet you and help you on your way to new adventures.