Displaying items by tag: Galway Hooker
#VOR – Mick Brogan's Hooker Mac Duach led a fleet of 30 boats into Galway dock welcomed by the Major of Galway firing a ceremonial cannon in advance of the Volvo Ocean Race fleet this month. Hooker racing takes place on the opening week of the VOR Grand Finale, Saturday 30th June and Sunday 1st July. On Sunday afternoon, 100 cruising and other boats from around the bay will be lead into docks in what is expected to be the largest Parade of Sail seen on Galway Bay.
The Galway Advertiser reports on the Galway-Abu Dhabi Maritime Cultural Exchange initiative, which has already seen a Galway hooker race against traditional Arabian dhows in the Persian Gulf.
Both cities have been "engaged for many years with restoration of traditional boats and revival of sailing skills," says the paper.
Their co-operation is being seen as a model for using sailing as a catalyst to bring different cultures together. And the gesture will be reciprocated when Galway hosts the race finale this July, as six dhows and 60 Emirati crew will be hosted in the city for an exhibition race against a fleet of Galway hookers.
Meanwhile, Galway's Tidy Towns committee is determined to make the city look its best in time for the race's arrival.
The City of the Tribes scored well in 2011 after a long absence, but is looking to take things a step further for 2012.
Interested volunteers can contact the Galway Volunteer Centre, Mill Street at 091 539 930.
#VOLVO OCEAN RACE - Galway was showcased on Friday 6 January as part of special a 'Irish Day' celebration in Abu Dhabi, where the Volvo Ocean Race fleet is getting ready to embark on its next leg.
Galway Bay FM reports that the City of the Tribes was highlighted as a top international tourism destination - with the 'VOR Village' at Nimmo's Pier being a focus of discussions, according to Galway Mayor Hildegarde Naughton.
Earlier in the week saw the first sailing in Arab waters of the near-century-old Galway hooker Nora Bheag, which is in Abu Dhabi as part of a cultural exchange between these host ports of the 2011/2012 Volvo Ocean Race.
The race is set to finish in Galway on Tuesday 3 July 2012, attracting the world's media and thousands of visitors to Ireland's fifth largest city for the final prize-giving.
#GALWAY HOOKER – The near century old Galway Hooker boat Nora Bheag, was finally taken out of her container in perfect condition in Abu Dhabi yesterday with plenty of water and sponges deployed to to keep her wooden hull moist in the hot climate.
She arrived safely in the Arab port after an historic voyage that set out from Galway over eight weeks ago.
First sail for Little Nora in Abu Dhabi
Little Nora, which also means "Little Light" in Arabic, is in Abu Dhabi as part of a cultural exchange programme between Abu Dhabi and Galway, both hosts of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011- 2012. This is a joint initiative involving the Irish Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates, Emirates Heritage Club, Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority and Tourism Ireland.
Her owner, Cóilín Hernon along with his family, crew Mike and Sue Fahy and Galway Hooker Association founder Padraic de Bhaldraithe carefully unloaded Nora Bheag from the container with the assistance of the Emirates Heritage Club and Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority.
She was launched from the slipway in the Volvo Ocean Race team base area into the Arabian Gulf. Once successfully rigged she made her way under sail towards the Emirates Heritage Club, her new home club while in Abu Dhabi. This short trip was the first time a Galway Hooker has sailed these waters.
She'll also be moored in the Volvo Ocean Race village where preparations are under way for the Irish Day festivities on the 6th of January in the Abu Dhabi race village. Guests will be welcomed out on board to experience sailing on her.
The return exchange will see six Abu Dhabi Dhow's travel to Galway to race against a fleet of Galway Hookers. The exhibition challenge will take place in Galway Bay during the finale celebrations of the Volvo Ocean Race and Global Village 2012 in July this year.
With both cities hosting a stopover for the grueling 39,000 mile round the world "Everest of Sailing' in 2012, the initiative celebrates common ties between the two. It is hoped that this type of promotion will generate a significant number of new tourist visitors and attract businesses from the Middle East to Ireland.
Enda O'Coineen, Chairman of Let's Do It Global – the not for profit foundation responsible for bringing the Volvo Ocean Race back to Ireland said he was delighted at how the cultural exchange was unfolding, "The working Arab Dhow is very symbolic of Arab culture and their history through trade is highly respected. Mixed in with the very modern aspects of Abu Dhabi the Dhow is sacred as a link with the past", said Enda, "Likewise the Galway Hooker was the workboat of the West of Ireland and has similar attributes. We are really looking forward to hosting the Dhows in Galway in July."
A traditional Irish sailing boat is on the way to Abu Dhabi in a cultural exchange that will also see six Arabian dhows in Galway for the finish of the Volvo Ocean Race next summer.
The National reports that the near-century-old Galway hooker Nora Bheag is being transported to the United Arab Emirates as part of a Maritime Heritage Cultural Exchange initiative, co-ordinated by Irish expat Peter Vine. (Track its progress at marinetraffic.com.)
On her way: Nora Bheag heads for Abu Dhabi. Photo: Boyd Challenger
According to the Galway Independent, the boat is currently en route to Rotterdam in a container loaded with a small curach named Noa.
Plans to include turf and bottles of poitin were abandoned, however, due to customs concerns - instead two hurleys and a sliotar will make the trip.
Nora Bheag is expected to reach port by early December ahead of the Volvo Ocean Race fleet which arrives on 1 January, marking the first time the city has hosted and taken part in the race.
Vine says he came up with the idea of the boat swap because of the two countries' shared maritime heritage.
There are many similarities between hookers and dhows, too, from their comparable sail shapes to their usage for fishing and personal transport.
"This will be a huge common shared experience that will build true friendships and a real cultural exchange," said Vine. "I am hugely grateful to Emirates Heritage Club, which has done so much to revive Arabian dhows, for making such a project possible."
The National has more on the story HERE.
Meanwhile a delegation from Galway is set to travel to Spain later this week for the launch of the Volvo Ocean Race.
A week of events begins this Saturday ahead of the start of the race proper on 5 November in Alicante.
Currach teams from around Ireland came together in Galway Bay last weekend for the revival of the An Tóstal Fesival, the Irish Times reports.
Up to 10,000 spectators are believed to have watched the nine Galway hookers brave the winds over two days of sailing in the event, the first in almost 50 years.
Members of the winning currach team from 1955 An Tóstal were also on hand for the opening ceremony.
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.
The coroner for Galway West has urged all boat-users to wear lifejackets and put safety first on the water.
Dr Ciarán McLaughlin spoke at the inquest into the death of experienced sailor Johnny Mac Donncha, who drowned after his Galway hooker was knocked over by a gust of wind, The Irish Times reports.
Mac Donncha, 67, was not wearing a lifejacket at the time of the accident on 5 September 2009. Despite the best efforts of rescuers in a neighbouring boat, he could not be revived.
The investigation into the incident found that if he had been wearing the lifejacket that was on board for him, "it would have increased his chances of survival".
The inquest also found that there was no VHF radio on board either vessel, the presence of which would have attracted helicopter assistance "faster and with greater ease".
Hyde Sails has announced the appointment of a new loft in Galway.
The only sailmakers on Ireland's west coast, Cullen Sailmakers was established in Galway in 1984. Since then Glendy Cullen (pictured below) has established a reputation for his loft's expertise and friendly service, manufacturing and repairing sails for both modern designs as well as the more traditional side, such as the Connemara and Galway Hooker gaff rig boats.
As the business grew, it moved to new and larger premises in Ballybane Industrial Estate. Glendy Cullen explains: "This move has facilitated our expansion and allows us to operate on a more professional and customer friendly basis. The central location of this sail loft has also proved hugely beneficial as it is easily accessible from all parts of the city and county."
The tie-up with Hyde was the next logical step, enabling the loft to offer an even more comprehensive service. 'I like Hyde's sails and the quality of workmanship is very high, ' explains Glendy. "We wanted a partner to help us to increase our production resources to enable us to meeting the ever-growing demand for our services, without compromising on quality."
Shore crew sailmaker for the Volvo Ocean Race Irish Green Dragon team, Glendy worked closely with the sailors and their onboard sailmaker during the last stopover.
Hyde's Sales and Marketing Director Richard Franks commented: "We see this as a big step for the Hyde brand in Ireland. In Glendy we have a strong local sailmaker who is already offering a fantastic level of service. The partnership brings together the strength of the Hyde brand and our state of the art production facilities, and a local, hand-on loft with the skills to service the Irish market locally at a time when Galway is expanding rapidly as a sailing area. It gives us great pleasure to welcome Glendy and his team to the Hyde family.'