‘Gentlemen-only’ yacht club opens doors

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A tradition of restricted male-only membership dating back almost 200 years was ended by the Royal Yacht Squadron on Britain’s Isle of Wight after the membership voted to allow women in as full members.

Officials at the squadron, which in true British fashion is housed in a castle in Cowes, England, and billed as one of the most prestigious yacht clubs in the world, said they had been lobbying members on the issue of women’s membership for four years before the vote.

“It is so obvious and right that women should not be barred from being full members of prestigious clubs in any sport so I welcome this. About time too," Rod Carr head of the national performance sports support group, UK Sport, told The Telegraph. “Not to have the likes of Shirley Robertson, Ellen MacArthur and Dee Caffari as members, if that is what they want, is an anachronism.”

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