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A bit about DSE's early history
DSE was formed in 1993 by Derek Lee as, he says, a selfish reaction to being informed that he was suffering from Peripheral Neuropathy and would be using a wheelchair in four years. Finding out about sailing for people with disabilities was initially done by taking part in the World Disabled Sailing Championship trials which were held at Rutland Sailing Club in 1993, meeting a number of sailors with a wide variety of disabilities.
Derek soon realised that a great deal could be done to get more disabled people on the water by providing boats which were specially designed or with simple adaptations to make them suitable for this purpose. Also there was a need for shore facilities such as stable pontoons with lifts. Two categories of participant would have to be catered for, these are experienced sailors who had become disabled or disabled people who had never sailed before.
This meant raising funds for the purchase of boats and equipment and the name Derbyshire Sailing Endeavour reflected the ethos of the project while at the same time endowing a local identity to which local businesses could be associated rather than donating funds to some anonymous national project.
The aims and ideals of DSE have over the years extended their activities to encompass many different types of ‘disability’ (this has been recognised generally) including people with learning difficulties, stroke and cancer victims, rehabilitation after trauma through sporting activities and many others.
There is no reason why the aims and objectives of Derbyshire Sailing Endeavour could not be repeated nationally and given a local identity.