Bracknell Sub Aqua Club 434 is a branch of the world’s largest scuba diving club – British Sub Aqua Club, and we have been operating in the Bracknell area since July 1968. We are a not for profit social dive club, run by members for the benefit of members, organised by a committee elected annually by the membership.
The club has approximately 100 members, including a number of non-diving social members. We have exclusive access to the Competition pool (25m length with maximum 3m depth) at Bracknell Leisure Centre between 8:30 and 10pm each Thursday evenings, which is used for training and try dives, and by members to try out their kit or practice skills. A lane is generally roped off for members (diving and social) who wish to swim or snorkel.
Once the pool activities are complete members generally make their way to the bar at the Leisure Centre to socialise. Part of this might involve booking on or organising dives and often includes discussions about the weather, which is very relevant in the dive season. There are dive trips most weekends between March and November, with two (or more) day dives typically run from Weymouth, Plymouth, Pembroke or Swanage. In addition single day dives are also planned at inland lakes such as Wraysbury, Vobster Quay and The National Diving and Activity Centre. Most of our sea based UK dives take place from chartered hard boats with lifts, with dives of different depths planned depending upon the experience of the divers. Each year we organise a Club Weekend where we aim to get as many of our active diving members together for at least 2 days of diving and a group meal. Most years there are longer diving trips to far flung places such as Scotland or even The Red Sea or Malta. Details of all planned UK diving trips can be found on the calendar.
Several of our members have taken their love of the sport further by becoming BSAC accredited instructors which allows us to offer numerous BSAC courses within the club from Ocean Diver (complete beginner) and Sport Diver (second level qualification) to Diver Leader and Advanced Diver qualifications, as well as more technical instruction such as rebreather training. In addition we are able to provide BSAC snorkel instruction. In support of early training we have twenty sets of scuba equipment which includes cylinders, Buoyancy Control Devices (Jackets), Regulators and weight belts with weights for hire to trainees. The dive club also hires a class room on Thursday evenings from 7:15pm for the lectures associated with the training.
Important to the life of this club are our Social Events that involves members, partners and their families in activities such as BBQs, Bowling (both Bar and 10 Pin varieties) and our very special Ice Divers’ Ball held in January. At many of these events, we have raffles and auctions to raise money for our chosen charities for the year. These charities are selected by the membership at the AGM and focus on both diving and those relevant to the local area.
We use Facebook page and Twitter and members receive emails detailing news and upcoming events. We aim to publish at least one newsletter a year called, Mouthpiece, where members get the opportunity to write interesting articles for the enjoyment of the rest of us.