Book Launch “Sharing the Passion, BASI – The First 50 Years”

The British Association of Snowsports Instructors (BASI) is delighted to announce the publication and launch today of “Sharing the Passion, BASI – The First 50 years”.

The history and heritage of BASI stands shoulder to shoulder with the emergence and growth of winter snowsports tourism in Badenoch & Strathspey specifically, but also the UK snowsports industry as a whole. The likelihood is, that if you have learnt to ski or snowboard in the UK in the last fifty years, then you have been taught by a BASI trained instructor! BASI celebrated its 50th anniversary over the winter season of 2012/13 and to acknowledge this landmark year, James Cove from Planet Ski was commissioned to write the story of BASI’s first 50 years.

“Sharing the Passion, BASI – The First 50 Years” is dedicated to the founding members of BASI (or BAPSI as it was first known) and those who have developed the Association into what it is today. Printed copies are available to purchase via the BASI website for £10.00 + p&p. It is also available to download as an ibook.

This book provides an in-depth look at the people and places that forged the history of the Association since its creation in the early 1960s and it celebrates one of the UK snowsports industry’s biggest export successes – British trained professional instructors.

As well as James Cove’s packed narrative there are over 70 illustrated photos and, on the digital version, a link to early video from Cairngorm will take readers back to the beginnings of ski instructing in the UK, up to the present day. It is truly a trip down memory lane for anyone who has been involved in the UK snowsports industry and especially for those who have attended a BASI course!

Long time BASI member and retired trainer, Pete Baker, recognised that the history of BASI was a story worth telling, and began some of the research that laid the foundations for what is in the book. Past Chair and current Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Lockerbie, saw the opportunity too, and, with the support of the BASI Board, commissioned James Cove to write the story.

Author, James Cove, summarises the scale of the task in the book’s acknowledgement:

“To my mind, the best way to write the history of BASI was not just to pour over Minutes of meetings, wade through old editions of newsletters, and dust off the cobwebs to search through documents and ledgers; it was to see as many people as possible and listen to their tales. With that in mind, I would like to thank all who have given up their time for me so I could place a microphone in front of them and say: “So, tell me all about it.”

I have attempted to find out as much as I can but, ultimately, I have had to rely on what people have told me. There may be a few errors and omissions as people’s memories have faded. Some may not feel their contribution has been adequately represented and others may feel the input of a few people has been overstated. It has been a mammoth task to gather the information and decide what is most relevant to this book. I apologise for any errors or omissions whole-heartedly.

Who was it that said: “You can’t please all of the people all of the time”? The history of BASI is part of a developing story about the sport we love and the mountains we spend our time in. Here’s to the next 50 years of sharing the passion.”

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