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Galway Hooker Chairman Calls For Support for ‘Special Boats’

22nd August 2018
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Galway Hookers are part of Ireland's Maritime Heritage and deserve support says Chairman Galway Hookers are part of Ireland's Maritime Heritage and deserve support says Chairman

The Chairman of the Galway Hookers Association says that these iconic boats deserve support to ensure their future as part of Ireland’s maritime heritage.

Dr.Michael Brogan told me in an interview which you can hear on this week’s Podcast (below): “The Galway Hooker is the iconic emblem of so many things about Galway and Connemara, which is used in every logo around Galway, but though many use it they don’t give anything back to it. We should not take these boats for granted. They are part of our heritage, they are an art form in themselves, the traditional sailing craft of Ireland, of the West, of Connemara and these craft should be given a similar recognition, for example say like the artists in Aosdána. I think they should be given a similar type of grant for their artistic work in keeping up the boats, just to help buying paint, anti-fouling, putting in new planks, things like that.”

He is hoping to get together “a group of interested people and put some pressure on the appropriate authorities and highlight to all those who use, admire and benefit from the Galway Hooker as an ionic emblem to ensure that the people who maintain, who keep these great boats going get some type of stipend and support.”

“These iconic boats deserve to be considered as part of the traditional art form of Ireland, which they are in the maritime sense and it is time to recognise that.”

I talked to Michael Brogan at Cruinniu na mBád, the Gathering of the Boats, in Kinvara, Co.Galway. Listen to him on this week’s Podcast below, where he starts by telling me how he bought the Galway Hooker, Mac Duach, the biggest of the fleet and I recall that I once helmed it and found just how strong these boats are.

Tom MacSweeney

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Tom MacSweeney

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Tom MacSweeney writes a weekly column for Afloat.ie. He also presents the maritime radio programme This Island Nation on community radio stations around Ireland.

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