Code of conduct
All Club members are required to conduct themselves in a professional (but fun) manner at all times and present the sport in a good light. The following guidance is provided:
- Members should adhere to club policies and guidelines.
- Members are reminded that discrimination will not be tolerated.
- Members should respond accordingly to Responsible Persons, Coaches and River Leaders when being instructed out on the water.
- All members have a duty of care to their peers. If members observe unsafe acts it is expected that where safe to do so they intervene. Incidents should be reported to the Responsible Person and/or the committee for action
- To ensure the continued availability of club equipment and boats members are encouraged purchase personal equipment over time. The club advocates that on achieving an appropriate level of competence member achieving:
- 'Start and Discover' paddlers should be looking to purchase basic safety equipment such as helmet, buoyancy aid ,
- 'Explore', paddlers should be encouraged to take personal ownership of their boats and equipment.
The following codes of conduct for rivers should be adhered to.
General guidance for all river users
- Be courteous to other river users at all times.
- Look after the environment - avoid damaging the banks and bankside vegetation.
- Take special care not to disturb beds of waterweed and gravel beds.
- Avoid dragging equipment over rock slab and boulders.
- Don’t disturb birds or wildlife - keep clear of nesting birds, areas important for breeding fish, and salient otter sites.
- Protect native species and habitats – use dry or disinfected equipment if used in other freshwater bodies.
- Don’t trespass on private banks or moorings.
- Never throw rubbish into the river or leave it on the banks.
- Park sensibly without causing obstruction.
- Get changed out of public view.
- Be patient with those new to a sport, as you would for learner drivers on the road.
- Hail to draw attention to a situation which might result in inconvenience, damage or collision. Treat a hail as a friendly warning and not an insult.
- Be as quiet as possible - don't spoil the enjoyment of others.
- Be friendly and polite to local residents and try to avoid arguments.
- Competitors and organisers should take into account the effects on other river users.
- Event organisers should display warning notices at each end of a stretch of river being used for competitions.
- Observe the countryside code and have regard for others' property.
General guidance for boaters
- All boaters must use the river in a safe fashion and have appropriate safety equipment.
- Park vehicles and trailers responsibly so that they do not cause a nuisance.
- Except in an emergency, launch or land only at recognised access places.
- Don’t land on gravel shoals and islands between 1 April and 31 July when birds may be nesting.
- Avoid trampling and launching / landing on or near sensitive otter sites.
- From October to April inclusive, trampling and launching on gravels used by salmon and trout may damage unhatched eggs and young fry.
- Obey the general rules of navigation and local byelaws.
- Give way to those engaged in organised competitions and have regard to any instructions given by officials.
- Groups of young and inexperienced boaters should be led by a suitably experienced responsible person – preferably a qualified instructor.
- When boating in a group try to keep together, especially when passing anglers.
- Don’t get in the way of other craft by suddenly changing course.
- Remember that larger boats are less manoeuverable and cannot use such shallow water as canoes, rafts and rowing boats.
Guidance for boating near anglers
- Look out for all anglers. Whilst assuring your own safety keep a good distance from them and avoid their lines.
- Pass anglers quickly and quietly, creating as little disturbance as possible and do not loiter in fishing pools.
- Keep well clear of wading anglers or anglers in boats and leave enough room in front and behind for them to cast.
- Comply with any signals anglers make to indicate whether they wish you to pass by or to wait a moment. Hail if you think your approach has not been noticed. It is an offence to willfully disturb breeding fish or spawning beds. Please leave the water if an Environment Agency Officer asks you to. Such a request will only be made where there is a real risk of disturbance.
Fishing from a boat is not allowed unless you have a valid rod licence and permission from the owner/tenant of the fishery rights.