Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Displaying items by tag: Historic Boats

#historicboats – There is a small group of islands in the Lesser Antilles where the traditions of boatbuilding were once crucial to the survival of local communities skimming a living from the sea. Hundreds of sailing vessels were once launched here, more than anywhere in the West Indies.

Today there is no more trading by sail, and these skills have vanished elsewhere in the region.

The film "Vanishing Sail" represents over fifteen years of research and documenting the art form of wooden boatbuilding in the Eastern Caribbean.

The Premiere of the movie "Vanishing Sail" - what a night! West Indies sloops & schooners from up and down the islands gathered on the dock for the 20th anniversary St. Barth Film Festival.

By nightfall the crowd swelled to 350 + people, a brief intro and the music of the sea began. The dock became wrapped in silence, only the creaking of mooring lines, the vessels all swaying together lit by the moon, all feeling the story as one.

Very powerful indeed to finally see our film come alive on a huge screen with such a wonderful audience followed by a standing ovation.

The film will be screened at selected Film Festivals during this summer & fall prior to a general release.

Published in Historic Boats

#NaomhÉanna - A campaign continues to transform a former Aran Islands ferry which plied the route from Galway, into a major tourist attraction, reports the Galway Advertiser.

However if a financial plan is not established within a number of weeks there is a risk that the Naomh Eanna will have to be consigned to the scrapyard and Galway will lose out on an attraction which could, in time, be worth millions to the local economy.

The Naomh Eanna was withdrawn from service in 1989 and has been lying derelict in Dublin Port for more than 25 years. Last year it emerged that there were controversial plans by Waterways Ireland for her to be scrapped.

She has now been acquired by the Irish Ship and Barge Fabrication Company as also previously reported on back in September. The firm specialises in the restoration of high quality heritage maritime holdings.

There are ambitious plans in place for a major refit of the Naomh Eanna to include an 80 bedroom boutique hostel, a restaurant and cafe, an island museum and micro brewery.

It is proposed she will be moored at Long Walk and become a focal point for tourism in Galway.

The Irish Ship and Barge Fabrication Company has begun work to try to structure a financial package to deliver the finished product. It is estimated that the project, which has been approved as a tax efficient investment, will cost €2.4 million.

For more on this development surrounding the Dublin-built veteran vessel, click HERE.

Published in Historic Boats

#HistoricBoats - A Canadian community descended from the builders of the world's oldest birchbark canoe have expressed concern that the vessel may be returned to Ireland, according to The Irish Times.

As previously reported on, the 'Grandfather Canoe', or Akwiten, was crafted by the Mailseet First Nation in Canada's Maritimes for use on the St John River valley in New Brunswick under British colonial rule almost 200 years ago.

A programme for RTÉ Radio's Documentary on One strand in August explained how the canoe later passed into the ownership of British army captain Stepney St George, who took it home to Headford Castle, from where it was later bequeathed to NUI Galway.

In the 2000s the canoe was rediscovered and after a First Nations campaign, in 2009 it was repatriated and presented to the Beaverbrook art gallery in New Brunswick, where it is presently in storage without exhibition space.

It has lately emerged that the historic vessel's current ownership status is unclear, prompting fears that it may be sent back to the City of the Tribes.

Members of the Mailseet community are now lobbying for the right to care for and exhibit what is a "spiritual and cultural artefact" to their people.

The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.

Published in Historic Boats

#HMScaroline – The National Museum of the Royal Navy (NMRN) has been boosted by a £1m lottery funding to turn Belfast-based HMS Caroline into a visitor attraction in time for the 1916 Battle of Jutland centenary celebrations off the coast of Denmark.

The derelict vessel, which is currently docked in the same Belfast shipyards where the Titanic was built, was in danger of rusting away or even being scrapped before moves to restore it started to build up steam two years ago.

The Heritage Lottery Fund has now awarded £11.5 million to fund the work ahead of 2016. For further coverage of this development, The Belfast Telegraph has a report HERE.

Published in Historic Boats

#Shipwreck - "One of Canada's greatest mysteries has been solved," said that country's Prime Minister Stephen Harper earlier this month upon news that the wreck of one of two ships famously lost in a mid-19th-century Arctic expedition has likely been located.

National Geographic has details of the rediscovery of the remains of either the HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, both of which disappeared in 1846 during an ill-fated expedition led by Sir John Franklin to map the Northwest Passage.

Sonar images captured by an ROV off King William Island in the northern Canadian province of Nunavut show the mostly intact hull of a ship – and according to maritime historian James Delgado, "there is no doubt" that it represents that final resting place of one of the lost vessels.

What's more, the ship's largely preserved condition means it could prove an invaluable "time capsule" to learn more about the people who embarked on that voyage some 170 years ago.

National Geographic has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Historic Boats

#classicboats – Cowes produced near perfect conditions for day three of Panerai British Classic boat Week where Squadron Racing Ltd ran two more excellent races in the Central Solent for the 52-strong fleet. With hot sun, a balmy sea breeze that built from sub 10 to almost 20 knots and more gleaming varnish and brass than you can shake a stick at, it was a spectacular day's sailing and great fun was had by all. With four of the seven race series now completed, the overall standings are shaping up and we can expect the next three days to be full of excitement.

In Class 3 Christine and Giovanni Belgrano's Whooper continues to dominate, winning both of today's races to make it four straight wins overall. Andy King's Gluckauf took second in both races and Rob Gray and Sam Laidlaw's Clarionet was third in both. In the overall standings Whooper unsurprisingly leads Class 3 with just four points. Although Gluckauf was the better performer today she is counting a Did Not Compete from yesterday's Around The Island Race and so Clarionet is lying in second overall on eleven points with Gluckauf two points behind them in third.

Mikado, owned by Michael Briggs, also claimed two first places today in Class 4 and so jumps into the lead overall with a seven point margin. After a lacklustre start to the regatta, Bob Gatehouse's Erida found her form this morning to finish second in race three, just ahead of David Foster and Ben Gillett's Leopard who also favoured this morning's lighter conditions. This afternoon Jonathan and Scilla Dyke's Cereste took second from David Messum's Nausicaa. In the overall standings Mikado is leading with seven points, Nausicaa is second on fourteen points and Cereste is third on twenty-two points.

Sean McMillan's Spirit 52 Flight of Ufford was once again the most consistent performer in Class 1, adding a first and second to their score card. Stephen O"Flaherty's Soufriere won race four and having claimed third in race three she now lies in second place overall, just three points behind Flight of Ufford. Michael Hough's Chloe had another good day with a second and third so lies just two points back in third overall.

In Class 2 race three proved to be somewhat controversial. There was a start line port starboard incident between David Murrin's Cetewayo and Ebsen Poulsson and Ed Dubois' Firebrand that later resulted in the Protest Committee awarding a 4% penalty against Firebrand. Then Cetewayo misjudged their approach to Gurnard Ledge and made contact with the buoy requiring them to take a 2% penalty. Jamie Matheson's Opposition was the clear winner of the race and after all the penalties were applied Firebrand was scored second and Cetewayo third. Race four was decided entirely on the water with victory going to Cetewayo with Opposition second and Firebrand third. In the overall standings Class 2 is now led by Firebrand on eight points, Cetewayo is second on nineteen points and Opposition is just one point further back in third.

In the 8 Metres the opening race of the day went to Christopher Courage's Helen who was also looking very good in race four until they became aware that the boat, which they only took possession of last week, was taking water fast. Unable to immediately trace the source of the water they pulled up on the final beat allowing their fellow competitors to sail on by. Back ashore they discovered the offending problem was a faulty bilge pump which was back filling. Christopher, who currently counts two wins and two retirements, joked that, "If we could just finish the races we'd be winning the regatta!" Whilst Helen had her dramas Murdoch McKillop's Saskia was proving to be the most consistent boat of the day with a pair of second places, while Athena finished third in race three and went on to win race four. In the overall standings Saskia now leads the 8 Metres by a single point from Athena with Helen two points behind in third.

This evening the participants are making the most of the wonderful weather with an Open Boats Dock Party sponsored by Classic Boat and Wight Vodka. This event is a perennial favourite as not only does it give you a chance to take a look at your competitors boats, but its also the perfect opportunity to compare battle stories and swop tips on the restoration and maintenance of these wonderful yachts.

Tomorrow will feature race five in the main points series followed by the Ladies Race, where the boats must helmed by lady. The first start will be at 10.00 from the Royal Yacht Squadron line with the second race following on. After sailing the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club will host the traditional crews party.

Racing continues until Friday 18 July and the event will conclude with a Parade of Sail past the Royal Yacht Squadron and Cowes Green at 11.00 on Saturday 19 July.

Published in Historic Boats

#NaomhEanna -The Naomh Éanna, a former CIE ferry that campaigners are attempting to save from being scrapped appears to be making progress, reports

Having reached a deal to take over responsibility for the vessel with a number of other stakeholders or potential stakeholders involved in deciding her fate.

Only the question of whether NAMA will allow the group to carry out survey and repairs as previously reported on on the heritage vessel remains a potential stumbling block.

However, a meeting with the agency is being arranged for the coming days, at which the issue will be discussed.

Built in the Liffey Dock in 1956 and once used to carry passengers and supplies between Galway and the Aran Islands, the ferry has been berthed in Dublin's Grand Canal Dock since the late 1980s — where she has since fallen into disrepair.

Waterways Ireland, which manages the docks, had been planning to scrap the vessel; safety concerns were raised in a hull inspection, and the ship could not be moved from the waterway under her own power.

Campaigners had asked for the plan to scrap the vessel to be delayed — but such a move seemed unlikely, until Minister Jimmy Deenihan announced a last-minute stay of execution earlier this year, following questioning in the Seanad from Senator David Norris.

For more on this latest development, visit HERE.


Published in Historic Boats

#NaomhÉanna - Minister for Heritage, Jimmy Deenihan and Waterways Ireland have agreed to restrain the scrapping of the nation's oldest surviving merchant ship, Naomh Éanna until next week, while a campaign group arrange a survey as previously reported on, to determine her true condition.

The Save Our Ship (SOS) Naomh Éanna campaign group had sought a target of €15,000 in funds which were raised through social media so to dry dock the iconic vessel and determine the structural integrity of the hull's condition.

The vessel completed in Liffey Dockyard in 1958, is moored in the number 2 graving dock in Grand Canal Dock, Dublin Port and the group are under pressure to have all arrangements made to pump out the dock.

In addition they are to chock the vessel so surveyors can access the critical shallow bottom ballast tanks where her frames and keel could have deteriorated.

Should the frames and keel be wasted to the extent that they need replacing then the vessel would be deemed un-economic to restore unless supported by the state as is common in most developed countries, according to the campaigners.

Waterways Ireland would then instruct their contractors L&M Keatings to destroy the ship.

The Minister and Waterways Ireland have made it very clear they will not assist or absorb any expense relating to this survey. Disregarding her status as the Nation's oldest surviving merchant vessel, her connection to Dublin's ship building heritage and her 30 year service between Galway to the Aran Islands.

She represents historic and cultural ties of island life during a career that many people fondly recall sailing on her, though the Underwater Archeological Unit have declared that she has 'no heritage value whatsoever'.

The SOS group dispute this finding as the European industrial heritage directive dictates any industrial artifact over 25 years old is deserving of protection.

The group also points out the employment potential of such an attraction in Galway Harbour (where a berth is available to her). Her proposed use as a multi-purpose floating venue after restoration would consist of boutique hostel, restaurant, cafe, micro-brewery and museum expects to employ more than 45 people.

Should the group manage to organise the dry docking and ascertain she is salvageable following survey due on 7 May, they are determined to negotiate the transfer of the vessel to a holding company.

This company will work on arranging private finance to restore and refit the ship in Dublin in line with the business plan presented to Minister Deenihan in April. Following repairs they are optimistic she will be able to sail under her own steam to Galway for completion.

Another historic vessel, Mary Stanford that had shared company with Naomh Eanna in Dublin's Grand Canal Dock, returned last weekend to her 'spiritual home' of Ballycotton. Co. Cork, where she is to be restored to glory.

The Barnett-class lifeboat was was renowned for her daring role in the rescue of the Daunt Rock lightship's crew in 1936. For the last two decades there has been a campaign to save her which eventually led to her been hoisted out of the basin in March.  

Initially she taken by road to a warehouse in Midleton and last weekend she finally completed her journey to east Cork as the Irish Examiner reported and that of her next stage of restoration.


Published in Historic Boats

#GalwayBay - If you're in Galway this weekend be sure to check out a public lecture by Cóilín Ó hIarnáin on the City of the Tribes' historic working boats of the 19th century.

As the Galway Advertiser reports, there's more to the city than the iconic Galway Bay Hooker, as the likes of the Scottish Zulu and the Manx Nobby were commonplace in local waters.

Details for booking a place at this free talk at the Galway City Museum this Saturday 12 April are available HERE.

Published in Galway Harbour
Tagged under

#NaomhÉanna – Marine restoration specialists Irish Ship & Barge Fabrication Co in co-operation with the Naomh Éanna Trust's Save Our Ship (SOS) campaign group are to present a €1.86m business plan today to Heritage Minister, Jimmy Deenihan.

As previously reported on, the minister had called for a 'concrete business plan' and today's presentation of the business plan will be using private funds to restore Ireland's oldest surviving merchant vessel, the former Aran Islands passenger, freight and cattle-carrying ferry.

The group need the minister to intervene and halt the scrapping by Waterways Ireland of the Liffey Dockyard ship completed in 1958 as the reprieve date expires next Monday, 31 March.

The plan was prepared in only 4 weeks and proposes a number of commercial activities on board the Naomh Éanna after restoration: a 82-bed boutique hostel, a 46-seat restaurant, an interactive museum and a micro-brewery plus a café seating 60 people.

Galway Port Company have offered a berth for the restored Naomh Éanna in which CIE had operated the 137ft vessel on the three-hour service to the Aran Islands until 1988. She then sailed to Dublin Port and in the following year she was transferred to the Irish Nautical Trust and berthed in Grand Canal Basin.

The plan describes how the vessel could be repaired in a dry dock in Dublin. Engineers are confident the antique machinery in the ship can be returned to service and the ship will return to her home city under her own steam.


Published in Historic Boats
Page 7 of 8

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

dbsc mainbutton
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

leinster sidebutton

Featured Associations

isora sidebutton

Featured Webcams

Featured Events 2021

vdlr21 sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton
quantum sidebutton
watson sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
mansfield sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
wavelengths sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating