Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

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Weekly Maritime News and Affairs with Tom MacSweeney
Island Nation
The world sailing organisation has changed its name – and about time too! The initials, ISAF, had to be explained in the English language as – International Sailing Federation. Having to explain an organisation’s name does it no favours. The…
Island Nation
I met a man this week who wants to make St.Stephen’s Day a national day of remembrance for those who have died in tragedies at sea. There has never before been such a day in Ireland. Noel McDonagh is from…
Island Nation
The dominant subject in the past week has been the weather – pictures on television and in the newspapers of water pouring through streets, into houses, shops, stranded cars and so on – bringing in its wake flooding, destruction, tragedy…
Island Nation
I meet a lot of people as a maritime journalist, people who do and have done amazing things in the maritime sector, but meeting Ireland’s only ‘Flying Angel’ was particularly interesting. A nice chap whom I realised that I had…
Island Nation

Model Yacht Racing in Cork

25th November 2015
I spent last Sunday morning, under a blue sky, with a steady breeze, watching high-tech yachts racing. Impressively beating to the weather mark, reaching and running downwind on a triangle/sausage/triangle course, with a couple of incidents to test the equanimity…
Island Nation
Athy is not really a maritime town in the coastal sense of that description. Its marine connection is, essentially, the Grand Canal on Ireland's inland waterways linking Dublin to Limerick and which was extended to Athy in 1791 when it took…
Island Nation
The first time I sailed the Round Ireland Yacht Race was in 1986 aboard Philips Innovator. That was a time when maxi yachts were not a feature of Irish waters. Innovator had sailed the Whitbread Round the World Race and…
Island Nation
There is always something unusual in the sea, a phrase I have heard very often from marine scientists and which I have been known to utter myself. It comes to my mind time and again when I am preparing this…
Island Nation
I have known Justin Slattery and followed his career for many years as he rose to become one of the top international sailing stars, the winner now of two Volvo Ocean Races in the toughest position on a racing boat,…
Island Nation
Youghal, on the East Cork coastline, was once the biggest Irish port trading with Britain. It has a long and proud maritime history, with many men serving at sea in the naval and merchant marine. The current edition of THIS…
Island Nation
I was doing the RTE television commentary at the start of the 2005 Tall Ships Races from Waterford. Three Irish tall ships led the international fleet ASGARD II, JEANIE JOHNSTON and DUNBRODY, with the State’s vessel, ASGARD, accorded the honour…
Island Nation
It is a point which I feel compelled to make, time and again, because it is people who make up a community of interest, by their determination, their commitment, their focus and that is what I believe the marine community…
Island Nation
I feel an empathy with Jimmy Buffett, the American singer and songwriter, whose words about his boat resonates with me: “Yes, I own a boat… It slides across the sea… Some folks say I’m a part of it…I know it’s…
Island Nation
It seems to me that, without dedicated volunteers, there would be a lot of work not done in the marine sphere, so I like when possible, to highlight what dedicated people are doing. Publicity can help them to raise funding…
Island Nation
Every sailor knows the importance of the weather forecast ….We watch forecasts on television, listen to them on radio, check the Met Eireann forecasts, look at the weather maps in the newspapers… At sea we check the Coast Guard’s coastal…
Island Nation
“We were invited into schools in the North Wall and while all the children had grandparents who were dockers, not one of them knew what a docker was, because all of that tradition is gone….” Amidst the current controversy over…

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