BSAC 406 – A Brief History
The club was formed in 1972 as British Sub-Aqua Club branch number 406, with a clubhouse on Ajman beach. It was then known as the “Trucial States Diving Club” and we still have a plaque from that time which is displayed in our club. The sea has since reclaimed the original clubhouse but some photos have remained and can be viewed on this page.
We moved then to new premises at Al Mahatta in Sharjah. This was the site of the Royal Air Force base, RAF Sharjah, which became the original Sharjah Airport (Al Mahatta means “the station” in Arabic) until the International Sharjah Airport was opened in 1978.
During our time at Al Mahatta, the clubhouse was seriously damaged by a fire and subsequently rebuilt on the same site. The newsletter above dates from that time, c.1989. We were finally evicted by the Municipality of Sharjah because of planned development in 1997 and it was then that we joined up with Sharjah Wanderers Sports Club. The present clubhouse was built by Harry Adamson and Geoff Taylor and not only closely resembles the Mahattah building but also many of the original materials were re-used.
New and old photographs.
Please help with identifying members and the year taken.
Geoff Taylor recently donated some old photos of the club which I’ve finally got around to scanning. This is a work in progress but they will be fed on to the website in batches along with some others I got from Harry some time back. Some of the faces are identifiable but the names of others have disappeared into the mists of time so if anyone recognizes their friend, lover, dive buddy, partner in crime etc, this information would be gratefully received.
Memories from 1976.
This is a picture of the dive club bar on Ajman beach dated May 76. The guy behind the bar is Pete Bramall (British army seconded to the UDF) who wasn’t a diver but was an avid drinker. The large wheel in the ceiling is from the cement barge and was lost in the ‘Great Fire’. The telegraph is off the ‘Khan Wreck’. For those not sampling the delights of the draft Double Diamond beer was Dhs2 per can.
Is this the admiralty anchor?
Last mail prompted me to dig out some more photos. There were two binnacles in the fire but one was completely beyond repair. One photo shows the repaired one which is now in the Sharjah clubhouse. Is it still that shiny?? There is a general shot of the ‘salvaged’ stuff after the fire. You will see the ‘bell’ came through it OK. The shell of the engine room telegraph in the foreground is the one sitting on the bar in the earlier picture I sent of the Ajman clubhouse. That bell has been in the club as long as I can remember; it was in the original Ajmanclubhouse but was used for the same purpose. I also found a picture of yours truly after a Dara dive; this is a large copper cooking pot. I found another one later. Brings a tear to the eye!!
Bert and Joan van Eyck.
Memories from 1987 to 1990.
Emailfrom Bert Van Eyck. Bert and Joan were active members here from 1987 to 1990 and will be remembered by one or two of you still here from those days. Bert has sent me some photos which will find their way on to the web site in due course but in the meantime a few are attached.