The Countess Owners Association (COA)
Was founded in 1984, soon after the introduction of the Countess range of quality cruising yachts designed by Ian Anderson MRINA. The purpose of the Association is to foster interest in the Countess range of sailing cruisers and to encourage contact between owners, the designer, the current builders and suppliers of equipment and services. The Association aims to establish a high level of recognition of Countess yachts as world-class cruisers and thereby maintain high resale values. Membership of the COA is open to owners and others interested in the Countess and the later Seastream range of yachts.
This includes any yachts based on a Countess hull but marketed under a different marque or brand name. The designer, Ian Anderson, was Honorary President of the Association and took a valued interest in Association activities, often giving a president’s address at the annual general meeting. His interest included the wider aspects of building, together with sailing and maintaining the range, and few yacht associations could have enjoyed such a high profile professional input.
Benefits of Membership
Membership of the Association opens the threshold to a mutually supportive group of like-minded sailing enthusiasts. Many members are highly practical individuals, a number having professional or trade expertise in diverse subjects, from engineering and engine maintenance to electronics and fibre-glassing skills. Indeed, a number of members have either completed their own hulls or have had them built to their own specifications on an MIY (manage it yourself) basis. Members are a friendly bunch and are constantly willing to share their expertise and advice with others. It is often the case that, whatever the problem, another member has been there before and knows what to do! Members obtain a 10% discount on boat insurance, which can more than cover the cost of membership of the Association. Details from Hon Sec.
The stylised Countess Coronet has been adopted as the Association’s sail emblem and was officially registered soon after formation. It provides a suitable feature that will aid recognition of the class and members yachts. The Association will furnish members with details, allowing the insignia to be produced simply and accurately by the member or any sail maker. The Countess Logo is available from the Association as a transfer and is used to identify the hull as a Countess, thereby increasing the wider awareness of the class and helping to promote higher resale values. A further aid to members’ recognition is the Association flag, which also features the Coronet on a white background between Oxford blue bands. Flown on a flag halyard when on a mooring or in harbour, it provides a suitable means of recognition for owners and crews and helps raise awareness of the COA.
The COA publishes a regular newsletter, which keeps members in contact with each other and announces corporate or area functions. Articles are included which may contain practical tips or give cruising journals from some of the growing number of members who venture across the globe in these sturdy yachts. A letters page allows for current thoughts or pleas for help – although a phone call or email to committee members can often result in a solution or a direction to ‘someone who can’.
Every year members are encouraged to attend organised rallies where there is always good social interaction and an avid interest in each other’s boat design and layout. Calendared events are usually held on the East and South coasts, but members in other cruising areas may organise smaller impromptu events which may be advertised in the newsletter or on the Countess Owners web site.
List of Members
On joining the Association, the new member receives a smart COA ring binder, complete with the current list of members. The list is updated annually and members will receive the new list with the next quarterly Newsletter. The list is not only an indispensable aid when cruising, in helping to recognise other members, but also in contacting others with similar craft for help or advice.
Membership Application Form
Please give your first name and surname, and include your wife’s, partner’s or co-owners name.
Address_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________Post Code _____
Email Address _______________________
Boat Name _________________________
Mooring location _____________________
Length (circle) ______28, 33, 35, 37, 43.
Model, CC, Deck Saloon, etc
Keel type, Bilge, Fin
Rig, e.g. sloop, ketch etc
Engine Make / HP __________________
Please give details of any special or non-standard features, i.e. taller rig, altered layout, etc. in fact, anything of interest. This helps other members seeking advice and experience.
Return the completed form, with a cheque for £20 payable to the Countess Owners Association to the Hon. Secretary at
22 Burman Rd, Garston, Liverpool, L19 6PN, (firstname.lastname@example.org)