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Tom MacSweeney
Top - the new Irish Ferries William Butler Yeats and above the Navy's new patrol vessel William Butler Yeats
Tom MacSweeney
Hello and you’re welcome to the weekly MacSweeney Podcast… The procedures and practices involved in the naming of ships once appeared to be the product of evolution and tradition, then became the choice of politicians – at least as far…
Edward Bransfield commemoration committee at Ballinacurra – Liam O'Riordan ,Ann Wilson, Eugene Furlong & Jim Wilson
Tom MacSweeney
Ireland is a nation which has been slow to recognise its maritime resources and its international maritime achievements made by Irish sailors. This I was reminded about again this week. But there are indications of changes for the better, driven…
Kitack Lim, Secretary General of the IMO
Ports & Shipping
“Connecting Ships, Ports and People” is the theme of World Maritime Day which is today, September 28, as marked by the International Maritime Organisation, the United Nations maritime agency. Does anybody notice anything being done officially by the Government here,…
This boat hasn't move in a long time
Tom MacSweeney
I don’t mean abandon in emergency at sea, I mean leave them to rot away in boatyards or on rivers or harbour moorings or in boatyards .. to ignore them …. deliberately forget about them …perhaps hoping never to be…
A Humpback Whale breaching in Irish waters
Tom MacSweeney
To mariners the sound of the sea is the sound of life and this week I heard some of the most amazing sounds ever recorded underwater. ‘The song of the Humpback Whale,’amazed me. It is the sound the males use,…
Tom MacSweeney's Scribbler white sail racing in Cork Harbour
Tom MacSweeney
Hearing about the open morning on Sunday, the 24th of September at the Royal St.George YC in Dun Laoghaire where Sigma 33 Class Captain Paddy Maguire wants to raise more interest in Sigmas, brought back how I became interested in…
Marine Biologist Lucy Hunt from County Kerry
Volvo Ocean Race
Kerry will have a dominant presence in this year’s Volvo Round the World Race. Three of the Kingdom’s notable maritime figures are involved and, with Olympian Annalise Murphy also sailing, there will be strong Irish interest, writes Tom MacSweeney. Biologist…
The annual sailing race from Cobh to Blackrock once marked the end of the sailing season in Cork Harbour
Cork Harbour
69 yachts have entered for the Cobh-to-Blackrock Race tomorrow writes Tom MacSweeney. This is the annual sailing race from Cobh to Blackrock which once marked the end of the sailing season in Cork Harbour. It no longer is that end-of-season…
Seabird activity can tell sailors a lot
Tom MacSweeney

Sailors & Seabirds

6th September 2017
Seabirds and sailors have a long history together. They are reputed to have guided lost sailors to land, led fishermen to catch fish and the sight of them has encouraged many a despairing sailor to realise that land is nearby.…
Hugo Boss Trialling in Cork Harbour this week
Tom MacSweeney
I got to helm Hugo Boss for a while on Tuesday off Cork Harbour. The tiller surprised me. I thought, with the size and length of this IMOCA 60 round-the-world ocean racer, I would be holding a heavy tiller, requiring…
Hal Sisk with his Water Wag dinghy 'Good Hope'
Tom MacSweeney
“For many people yacht ownership is enough. They buy a boat and they keep it in a marina and they don’t go sailing very often and they go there for picnics and so on, but for some people you can…
RNLI lifeboat crews on the pitch at Croke Park
Tom MacSweeney
RNLI Lifeboat crews on the hallowed turf of Croke Park, unfurling huge flags with a message about water safety in front of 67,000 passionate football supporters seems an unlikely activity, but it was achieved just before the teams they were…
Ballycotton Island Lighthouse
Tom MacSweeney
A few weeks ago I rounded Ballycotton Island on the East Cork coastline, sailing beneath the iconic, dramatic black lighthouse which towers 195 feet above sea level. It was erected in 1851, the construction led by the renowned engineer George…
An Irish Water Safety Ring Buoy
Tom MacSweeney
There can be no equivocating about the importance of water safety, so the proposals by a Mayo doctor and Senator in legislation put before the Oireachtas to jail or severely financially penalise those who vandalise or steal public lifebuoys deserve…
Young sailors at Baltimore Harbour and the Islands Ferry
Tom MacSweeney
Baltimore will become a centre for sailing over the next few weeks. This August weekend the annual sailing trek to the waters around Carbery’s Hundred Isles will get underway with the annual overnight race from Crosshaven to Schull. For the…
Dr.Michael Kennedy and the disappearance of the South Arklow Lightship
Tom MacSweeney
The Irish Lights issued a statement about the South Arklow Lightship that didn’t tell the full story. Their official explanation that it was missing off station was that it had “disappeared.” In reality it had been sunk! Dr. Michael Kennedy…