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Weekly Maritime News and Affairs with Tom MacSweeney
Damian Foxall is First Choice
Island Nation
"When Damian is on a project, it is often the winning one. As such, it is better to have him with us rather than against us." That tribute to Damian Foxall comes from Franck Cammas, renowned amongst the top sailors…
National 18s -72 Years Old and Still Sailing
Island Nation
My first experience of racing was in a National 18 wooden dinghy and it was rough. Inexperienced as a crewman during a race in Monkstown Bay, I slit the top of a finger across a chain plate while pulling in…
Island Nation
I am glad to see that efforts are being made to restore the national sail training programme, but less sanguine about reposing any confidence in the present Government to give practical assistance. I talked a few weeks ago with the…
Island Nation
My time on the water has been spent 'on the surface,' but those who like to go underwater tell me the attractions of diving are magnificent and that Cork Harbour, my sailing base atop the water, is one of the…
Remembering Seafarers Who Saved the Nation
Island Nation
City Quay in the centre of Dublin can be a cold place when the wind whips upriver from the open sea. There was a 'bite' in the wind as I stood there in late November last year, recording the sounds…
An Irish Maritime Foundation
Island Nation
I wonder whether there might be interest in forming an Irish Maritime Foundation? I raise the question having discussed the possibility with those who run the UK Maritime Foundation and whose views about the sea about the sea impressed me…
David Harte Sets Another Headline
Island Nation
I have long admired the commitment and dedication to sailing of David Harte in Schull. With his design of the TR 3.6 he has achieved what may well prove to be the ideal boat for team racing. This aspect of…
MacSweeney Receives British Honour for Maritime Journalism Work
Island Nation
For the first time an Irish maritime journalist was honoured by the British Maritime Foundation at its annual awards ceremony in London. The Desmond Wettern Award was presented to Afloat's Tom MacSweeney. It is made to the writer, broadcaster, journalist…
Living Beyond Our Means
Island Nation

Living Beyond Our Means

29th October 2010
That is not a title referring to the current economic situation, though it is certainly apt in that regard. I am using it to refer to the fact that as humans we live on relatively small pockets of land on…
Mindless Destruction on my 'Lady of the Water'
Island Nation
I am in a somewhat depressed mood writing this week’s column. On Sunday afternoon I boarded my boat on its mooring near the Royal Cork Yacht Club in Crosshaven and what I saw destroyed memories of a pleasant summer sailing…
More Irish International Success
Island Nation
It is great to report more Irish success on the world sailing scene, where our sailors have done well this season, lifting the country’s reputation internationally. SCHULL will stage the Youth World Team Racing Championships next year, which is a…
Could Waterford Lead a Tall Ships Revival?
Island Nation
I am aware that a number of groups are examining the possibility of launching a national sail training programme. I wonder if Waterford could be the place to lead it and be the base for national sail training. The marine…
Counting the Cost of New Fishing Boat Regulations
Island Nation
The cost of upgrading fishing boats to comply with new regulations first mooted three years ago means some boats cannot put to sea again. It's a move that will cost hundreds of jobs to coastal communities says Tom MacSweeney The…
Sailing Body Challenges Government
Island Nation
The Irish Sailing Association has told the Government that Ireland is being left behind in marine development because of the way the State has neglected the maritime sphere. I applaud the national sailing authority for making it clear that while…
Irish Match Racing Gets Recognition it Deserves
Island Nation
Match Racing has been given full approval by the national sailing association. I reported a few weeks ago that Match Racing Ireland, which organises the racing, had made application to the Irish Sailing Association. This has been approved. "We are…
O'Dea Escapes on Late Late Show
Island Nation
Willie O'Dea appeared on RTE's Late Late Show on September 10. The following day, September 11, was a major day in Irish maritime history - the second anniversary of the sinking of the national sail training vessel, Asgard. O'Dea did…

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