King Lear Model Boat Club – a brief history and introduction
King Lear Model Boat Club (KLMBC) was formed in March 2008 when a group of model boaters became dissatisfied with a Leicester based model boat club of which they were members. Having split from that club they looked around for another lake to sail on.
Some years earlier, a large expanse of land to the north of Leicester had been found to have a seam of gravel which had been subsequently excavated. After extracting the gravel, the pits were allowed to fill up with water from the adjacent river Soar forming an assortment of lakes up twelve feet deep.
In the 1980’s Leicester City Council and Leicestershire County Council along with Charnwood Borough Council decided to convert the area into a nature reserve and recreation facility, thus creating the Watermead Country Park
Tarmac roads, pathways and car parks were laid to give easy access. Reed beds and bird watching hides were installed in some areas. Wardens are regularly in the park maintaining the park, its facilities and flora.
In the northern area of the Park, under the control Leicestershire County Council lay several lakes, one of which they had named King Lear’s Lake.
The break-away model boaters approached Leicestershire CC for permission to use this lake for sailing their model boats. Approval was given and the King Lear Model Boat Club was formed.
Leicestershire CC was keen to encourage widespread public use of the Park with the result that the lakes now host a sailing club (John Merrick’s Lake) and King Lear’s Lake is used by King Lear Model Boat Club along with a windsurfing and paddle board club and a triathlon club. Additionally, we see the local Police Force and Fire Service occasionally using the lake for rescue training purposes.
King Lear’s lake is approximately 1 mile in circumference with a depth of up to 12 feet.
Further information on the Watermead Country Park is available on the internet.
We have a good, strong relationship with Leicestershire CC which has installed a concrete slipway and landing stage for us on the northern bank of the lake improving access for less able bodied members.
Access to the Country Park is via a pay-on-entry machine although KLMBC members can take advantage of Leicestershire CC’s Sports Club scheme and purchase a credit card style season ticket for a one-off payment. The pass is valid as long as KLMBC membership is maintained.