The RYA yesterday (Nov 6th) joined forces with the BSA (British Surfing Association) and BCU (British Canoeing Union) in presenting a petition to David Davies, MP for Monmouth urging British Airways to overturn its decision to ban a selection of sporting equipment from its flights including windsurfs, surf boards and canoes.
An ‘Early Day Motion’ (EDM) has now been raised in Parliament to gain support for the petition amongst MPs and the RYA, BSA and BCU are urging everyone involved in these sports to contact their local MP and get them to register their support for the motion.
In the motion Davies says: “This house notes with concern that British Airway\’s decision to ban surfboards, windsurfers and canoes from its flights will vastly increase the costs and difficulties of travelling to such locations outside of the UK as well as acting as a barrier to tourists wishing to travel to the UK to surf, windsurf and canoe; notes that the sporting equipment used are usually no heavier or cumbersome than musical instruments or golf club sets; and calls on British Airways to urgently reconsider its decision to ban surfboards, windsurfers and canoes from all flights.”
Amanda Van Santen, Chief Windsurfing Instructor, RYA said: “We welcome the support of the David Davies MP and strongly urge all windsurfers and supporters of the sport to contact their local MP and support the EDM. We are continuing to try and meet with representatives of British Airways to better understand the reasoning behind their decisions and hopefully come to some amicable way forward.”
If you wish to contact your local MP and ask them to support the motion you can find their contact details by visiting www.theyworkforyou.com.
An EDM number for the motion will be posted on the RYA website in due course and once active, details can be found by visiting edmi.parliament.uk/edmi
The ban of various sporting equipment by British Airways came in to effect yesterday (06 November) and they will no longer accept the following equipment at check-in as part of the sporting equipment allowance:
• Hang gliders
• Windsurfing boards and sails
• Kayaks or canoes
• Pole vaults
If you wish to add your name to the collective petition set up by the BSA against the ban of windsurfers, surf boards and canoes you can register at http://www.britsurf.co.uk click the ‘SIGN ONLINE PETITION OF PROTEST IN THE NEWS SECTION ON THE HOME PAGE’. Follow the easy steps to sign the petition and add any comments.
Alternatively join the Facebook ‘British Airways Surfboard Ban’ group or register a complaint directly to BA by visiting the link: http://www.britishairways.com/travel/custrelform/public/en_gb
Thanks to Richard Marsh from Naish UK for representing the windsurfing industry and supporting the various govering bodies.