Avid windsurfer Samantha Smithson has been appointed as leader of the Coastal West Sussex Partnership’s ‘All on Board’ project, which seeks to galvanize West Sussex’s water sports industry.

In Autumn last year, the partnership announced it had been awarded a £170,000 grant from the Coastal Communities Fund towards the £340,000 project.

All on Board aims to put coastal West Sussex on the map as an active water sports hub; growing water sports tourism, extending the season and helping water sports businesses in the area to thrive, grow and create new jobs.

Samantha Smithson is an all-round water sports enthusiast and is regularly out on the water anywhere between Hove and Worthing if the wind is blowing. She started out as an RYA windsurfing instructor, eventually becoming became an instructor trainer and is also a BSUPA Paddleboard instructor and enjoys paddling when the wind is light. A co-owner of the Aqua Sports Company, an established water sports centre in Surrey, she has over 20 years of water sports business experience.

Samantha explained: “Since moving to Lancing last September, I have been on the lookout for a new project, so I am really excited to be taking on this role. I have been windsurfing this coastline – and more recently paddle boarding and surfing – for many years and feel passionately that we have a brilliant stretch of water with much to offer water sports devotees. This is a great opportunity to develop the region as a water sports visitor destination.”

Caroline Wood, Director of the Coastal West Sussex Partnership commented: “It’s time to make coastal West Sussex the destination of choice for both new and seasoned water sports lovers. From kitesurfing, to diving, paddle boarding to kayaking, there’s already an incredible array of water-based sports available along our beautiful coastline.

“We were inundated with interested applicants and we’re delighted to welcome Samantha to lead the project and help us achieve our aims.”

If you’re interested in being involved in All on Board or just finding out more about the project, then please email samantha.smithson@coastalwestsussex.org.uk

Coastal Communities Fund
The Great British Coast has enormous economic potential and this government is determined to see it thrive all year round.

That’s why, by 2020, the Government will have invested £250 million in our much-loved seaside areas through dedicated programmes like the Coastal Communities Fund to help in generating new jobs and boosting businesses.

So far, analysis has shown that this has been money well spent with every £1 invested having the potential to create an up to £8 boost to our coastal economies. To find our more visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coastal-communities-fund