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Marcus Connaughton, Presenter of Seascapes
Hello and welcome aboard this week’s edition of your maritime programme Seascapes, later this evening we’ll hear from Fergal Keane who attended the recent Angling Show at the National Show Centre in North County Dublin;  we’ll hear from writer and…
Jarlath Cunnnane’s own-built expedition yacht Northabout sails up Clew Bay in Mayo with Croagh Patrick beyond in October 2005 on her return from seasons in the Arctic and Pacific which had seen her transit both the Northwest and Northeast Passages, with Paddy Barry as co-skipper. In 2016, Northabout did both of the Arctic passages in one extraordinary seven week cruise, with Russian ice-voyaging expert Nikolay Litau playing the key role
The Irish Cruising Club draws its varied membership from every part of Ireland, and since its foundation in 1929, this eclectic group has seen its cruising range extend from European waters until they have now covered virtually every corner of…
Jack O'Keeffe's Drascombe approaching the Fastnet Rock
The members of the Drascombe Association celebrated 50 years of their boat in Belfast at the weekend. Five thousand Drascombes have been built and their owners enjoy sailing them. That was the message of the Secretary of the Irish branch…
The spirit of Dun Laoghaire. J/109s giving it all they’ve got on Dublin Bay. For 2017’s festive Dun Laoghaire Regatta event from July 6th to 9th, the J/109s have very sensibly decided to opt for participation in the open division, adding the interest of racing against boats of other types while being secure in the knowledge that their own stand-alone National One Design Championship (2016 edition pictured above) will be held later in the year. If their “most serious series” is thus planned to be at another place and another time, why not allow them to finish at least one VDLR race within Dun Laoghaire Harbour?
For the summer of 2017 at least, it looks as though Dun Laoghaire Harbour is going to remain free of the threat of the installation of a new liner berth. W M Nixon reckons this provides a unique opportunity for…
The Hal'penny Bridge over the River Liffey in Dublin
There is always something interesting to be reported upon and discussed about the maritime sphere, I believe and so I always want to broadcast interesting stories on This Island Nation. This week one underlines the importance of maintaining knowledge of…
David Lovegrove happy in his work as a Race Officer
David Lovegrove, President of the Irish Sailing Association, steps down in a week’s time. The conclusion of his three year period in office at the up-coming ISA Annual General Meeting relieves him of what is surely the most demanding voluntary…
Bray Harbour silt–up problems in County Wicklow
Hello and welcome aboard this week’s edition of Seascapes your maritime programme, tonight our thoughts are with the family and friends of the missing crew members from the Irish Coastguard Sikorsky S -92 Rescue Helicopter 116 lost off the West…
Captain Paul O'Regan, Harbourmaster of the Port of Cork and Bantry Bay
Bantry Bay is one of this island’s greatest maritime resources and is about to be opened up with a new marina very close to the centre of the town. Twenty-two miles long from its entrance and with 22 slipways and…
Busy men. Mark Mansfield on the wheel and Maurice “Prof” O’Connell optimising the trim on Dave Cullen’s J/109 Euro Car Parks at the start of the Volvo Round Ireland Race 2016, in which they won their class - the only Irish boat to do so. While the boat - in her other life, she’s the Kelly family’s Storm - has been an ICRA “Boat of the Year” in past seasons, at last weekend’s ICRA National Conference in Limerick, Mark Mansfield was present to collect the “Boat of the Year” award on behalf of John Maybury’s J/109 Joker 2, his regular mount. And the Prof was there to tell us about winning the Melges 24 Worlds in Conor Clarke’s Melges 24 Embarr
On the other hand, ICRA could equally mean 'Ireland’s Cool Runnings Assembly'. In the week in which the Travelling Community was granted Ethnic Minority Status, W M Nixon finds himself among two groups which might be equally deserving of such…
The Connaught went down on March 3, 1917 with the loss of three crew
A German submarine sank the City of Dublin Steam Packet Company’s RMS (Royal Mail Ship) Connaught, about which much less is known than its sister ship, the RMS Leinster, which was sunk with huge loss of life off Dun Laoghaire.…
Glory days. Asgard II at her best in a Tall Ships Parade in the Baltic in company with the Russian government’s Shtandart, a replica of a warship built by Peter the Great in the early 1700s.
As we move into March each year, throughout Ireland Tall Ships enthusiasts will wistfully recall that it was in March 1981 that Ireland finally commissioned her own Tall Ship, a national flagship worthy of our aspirations, the Jack Tyrrell-designed and…
Cruiser Racer action on Dublin Bay in the J109 class. This year there are five major events running between June 9 and July 9
The Irish Cruiser Racer Association must be applauded for providing a platform under the theme: 'we need to talk about cruiser racing' at tomorrow's conference in Limerick. Like an elephant in–the–room, the overcrowded Summer fixtures needs to be urgently addressed…
Baltimore Sailing Club Commodore Michael Walsh
I was in Baltimore Sailng Club last week for the annual training camp run by the Optimist Association when 130 young sailors braved and overcame what were at times quite testing sailing conditions. I watched with admiration the impressive organisation…
This famous 1834 aquatint by J Lyons of a schooner from Bermuda sailing in the Caribbean shows that the straightforward Bermudan rig was already old hat when it caught on elsewhere in the 20th Century
The 35th staging of international races for the 176-year-old America’s Cup is rising rapidly up the agenda. The opening jousts for challengers begin on 26th May 2017 at the first-time-selected venue of Bermuda, and the cup series itself starts there…
Flying Fifteen sailing on Dublin Bay. Sailing is recovering after recession
Sailing is in recovery mode after six or seven years of famine. That is the opinion of the Chief Executive of the Irish Sailing Association, Harry Hermon. This week he told me frankly that the sport had struggled over the past…
How about this for the Editorial Office? The 55ft steel cutter Annabelle J is cruised extensively by incoming Irish Cruising Club Annual Honorary Editor Maire Breathnach of Dungarvan and her husband Andrew Wilkes
Cruising is the side of sailing which sometimes finds it difficult to make its voice heard. Its essence is in the quiet enjoyment of seafaring and the peace of secluded anchorages. Unlike the absolute clarity of racing results, which create…

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