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Patron on boardpouring the bubbly

THE Countess of Wessex officially relaunched a sailing smack just a stone's throw from where it was first built 124 years ago.

Her Royal Highness poured a bottle over Priscilla's bows at Brightlingsea hard on Thursday afternoon following a major restoration project.

Apprentice shipwrights have spent four years restoring the smack, which is part of Essex’s fishing heritage and the oldest surviving vessel to be built by the Stone Brothers boat yard in 1893.

The 36ft sailing smack will be used by the Pioneer Trust for training, and also for private hire for smack races and local regattas.

The Countess of Wessex is patron of the Association of Sail Training Organisations which helped to stage the launch event.

The Pioneer Trust received £790,500 from the Heritage Lottery Fund for a wider project which included the Priscilla restoration and other schemes. Ops manager Felicity Lees said: "The project was over nearly four years, with two boat rebuilds, including Priscilla which was the bigger one.We did quite a lot of other things as well and this is now the end of the project."

The trust was originally set up to restore the Essex smack Pioneer, which was built in 1864 and rescued from the mud at West Mersea in 1998. It is now used to train people how to sail.

Felicity said: "Apart from the Pioneer launch back in 2003, this is the biggest thing we have done. It's been a pretty major project and probably took about four years by the time we finished it. We have had lots and lots of apprentices working on it over the past few years. Our remit was 15 apprentices but there has been a lot more than that."

A smaller boat called Trinity House has also been restored as part of the project.

Felicity added: "There aren't many opportunities to learn how to sail a smack, but now you will be able to learn to sail a gaff rig boat on Priscilla at a reasonable price. Priscilla is only half the size of Pioneer so you get a real feel of being able to sail her yourself because you only need a couple of people rather than a team. She was the last smack to come out of Stone's Boatyard so she is historically significant to the area. When we relaunch her it will be just a stone's throw away from where she was originally built."

(adapted from the Clacton Gazette, 26th June 2017)

The Jubilee Sailing Trust and Barclays employees from across the UK have joined forces to embark on an extraordinary event; to voyage round Great Britain aboard Lord Nelson, one of only two fully accessible tall ships in the world.

LordNelsons

In total over 400 people, comprising Barclays employees and disabled or disadvantaged people, will be joining the ship’s permanent crew for 11 voyages over a two month period.

The event programme aims to not only provide a life-changing experience for all participants, but to create community-level opportunities to promote accessible services, digital skills and inclusive employment thanks to a parallel series of in-port events linking with Local Authority and Corporate partners.

The first-of-its-kind voyage has been a huge logistical undertaking, bringing together hundreds of people across the country, and dozens of community and charity groups, to help deliver the bold ambition of a “round Britain” relay, aiming to change perceptions of disability and bring together the communities in which Barclays operates.

With thanks to Article by Yachts and Yachting
Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust celebrate the unveiling of a new yacht
by Natasha Elliott on
3 April 2017

Today, the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, a national organisation that supports young people in recovery from cancer, celebrated the unveiling of a new, uniquely adapted Beneteau Oceanis 45 yacht, thanks to the generous support from players of People's Postcode Lottery.

The purchase of the yacht, Caledonian Hero, was made possible after the Trust received an additional £200,000 from players of People's Postcode Lottery in 2016 on top of their long standing annual support of the Trust. The yacht will reside at the Trust's northern base in Largs Marina and will be used to further improve the experience of young people with mobility issues after treatment from Scotland and the North of England. The Trust uses the power of sailing to help young people aged 8-24 in recovery from cancer to re-engage with education, employment and society.

Island Trust trustee, Conrad Humphreys is pleased to have purchased (from Windfall Films) Bounty’s End, the replica 23 foot wooden vessel that was used in the current Channel 4 series, Mutiny. As a professional skipper, Conrad was the sailing master for the hit TV show.

Conrad is keen to create a “living history” legacy project, whereby young people will have the opportunity to sail in the boat and experience some of what it entailed to be part of this incredible historical programme, following in the footsteps of Captain Bligh.

The Bounty Project will see an exciting and inspiring collaboration between Conrad and The Island Trust to support young and disadvantaged people with life changing voyages at sea.

Vanity1golden vanity

A Devon-based yachtsman who took 88 days to cross the Atlantic in a single-handed race — arriving 68 days behind the winner — is to sail the boat he used in the competition for the first time in 45 years.

Peter Crowther still holds the record for the slowest-ever crossing in the Original Single-handed Transatlantic Race (OSTAR) set in 1972 when he left Plymouth for Rhode Island USA on the historic gaff-cutter ‘Golden Vanity.’
This May the 74-year-old pub landlord will set sail on his 10th and last OSTAR, this time on a more modern Swan 38. Two weeks before the event he will be taking his family out for a nostalgic voyage along the south Devon coast on the boat he used for the original crossing.

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