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Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

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Historic Boats
 Floating on air…..the new 12ft Bray Droleen, built to a design of 1896, is of a remarkably powerful shape - with 6ft beam, her width is half of her length
When small boat sailing enthusiast W Ogilvy of Bray in County Wicklow persuaded seven of his friends to join him in 1896 in creating a new 12ft sailing dinghy class to his own design for local beach use, even the…
Sheep-shape & Bristol fashion, or a time for woolly thinking……? For 64 years from 1926 until around 1990, deck scenes like this were a regular part of the Ilen's long working life
When we contemplate the 56ft 1926-vintage Limerick ketch Ilen today in her superbly-restored form, making her stylish way along rugged coastlines and across oceans on voyages of cultural and trading significance between places as evocative as Nuuk in West Greenland…
While her wardrobe is not yet complete, John B Kearney's 1925-built Mavis - restored by Ron Hawkins in Maine - has enough cloth available to take her first new steps under sail in September 2020
In this time of increasing uncertainty with its frustration of sailing plans, we find reassurance in soothing thoughts of well-restored or new-built classic boats. And traditional vessels in handsome and workmanlike order have the same heartening effect. We've an instinct…
The River Class racing at Strangford Lough
Scottish yacht designer Alfred Mylne designed the River Class in 1920 at the behest of eight members of the Royal Ulster Yacht Club (RUYC) in Bangor on Belfast Lough. Next year the design is celebrating its 100th anniversary. In all…
Irish Sailing Welcomes Galway Hookers Into The Fold
Irish Sailing has welcomed its newest affiliate in the shape of the Galway Hooker Sailing Club. The club was formed in 2017 when a group of friends came together to revive and retain the Galway Hooker tradition in Galway. The…
Ilen departs Foynes, on passage for Kilronan in the Aran Islands. Conor O'Brien – Ilen's designer in 1926 – ensured that all his major voyages essentially started from Foynes, his home port where he lived on Foynes Island
The restored 1926-built Conor O'Brien-designed 56ft ketch Ilen of Limerick found the Atlantic in a challenging mood last week as she undertook a combined educational, cultural, and commercial cargo voyage. Yet despite the vagaries of the Irish weather and the…
RCYC Admiral Colin Morehead on board the Cork Harbour One Design, Jap
Royal Cork Yacht Club Admiral Colin Morehead was aboard Royal Cork's Jap for some pre-race preparations before next Saturday's big race from Cobh to Blackrock.  'She's So light, so responsive, an absolute joy to sail' was the verdict from the…
A new International 12 foot dinghy this year in Ireland by Rui Ferreira of Ballydehob
As the International 12-foot class prepares to celebrate the tenth anniversary of its revived championships next week in Dun Laoghaire Harbour, the historic dinghy class is also welcoming a new arrival. A new clinker-built 12 has recently been completed by…
HMS Caroline, Alexandra Dock and Thompson Dock Pump House.
A major Belfast Harbour attraction HMS Caroline could be towed back to Portsmouth "for its own protection" within the next year, it has emerged. Dr Tim Schadla-Hall, the chairman of the HMS Caroline Preservation Society, writes Belfast Telegraph, has warned…
Back at her real home after 93 years – the 56ft 1926-built restored Limerick Trading ketch Ilen takes up her berth in Foynes for the first time in 94 years yesterday (Friday) evening. On the Foynes YC pontoon are (left to right) Ilen Project Manager Gary Mac Mahon, and Conor O’Brien family relatives Rob, Alison and Stephen O'Brien. Conor O’Brien’s modest house of Barneen on Foynes Island, in which he designed both Saoirse and Ilen and spent his last days in 1952, is just visible above Ilen’s bowsprit.
The 56ft Trading Ketch Ilen has had a busy couple of days of cultural and educational activities in Kilrush during her current two-week cargo cruise, with performances including shows and workshops with noted Limerick Boy and contemporary dancer Tobi Omoteso.…
The trading ketch Ilen berthed in County Clare where traditional sail traders berthed before her, at the quayside in Kilrush
The Shannon Estuary is king size and clearly defined. Where some other great rivers gradually broaden as they near the sea, sometimes dissipating further into a delta, the Shannon Estuary affirms its individuality with a rapid change as it emerges…
The Dublin Bay 21 Naneen of 1905 vintage (foreground) and her 1903 sister-ship Garavoge, elegantly together in Kilrush Marina
The dedicated and detailed process whereby Hal Sisk and Fionan de Barra are restoring the historic Dublin Bay 21 Class (founded 1903) for a meaningful role in the 21st century has taken a major step forward with the 1903 Portrush-built…
 Ilen at the quay in Baltimore yesterday (Sunday) to take on local products for delivery by sea
When - on August 4th - we previewed the planned eco-friendly "cargo cruise" by the restored Limerick trading ketch Ilen on Afloat.ie, it was emphasised that speed would not be of the essence as the 1926 Conor O'Brien-designed and Oldcourt…
Summer perfection – Pat Murphy's 23ft Pinkeen celebrates her seventy years with dreamlike sailing off Cobh
Not everyone gets the opportunity to restore a boat built by their grandfather, a gem of a boat whose construction started 70 years ago. But then, not everyone has had a professional seafaring and recreational sailing career to match that…
If we were to title this photo “Traditional west of Ireland gaff rigger sails past Macdara’s Island off the shores of Connemara”, even in Ireland quite a few people would buy it as the truth. But the rugged little gannet-laden island of Ireland’s Eye off Howth really does looks as if it belongs somewhere in the far west of County Galway. And the thought that they still sail boats of this antique appearance in such a setting within ten miles of the centre of a modern capital city is also clearly absurd….Yet this is the Howth 17 Sheila ( Dave Mulligan) in Howth Sound in training for this weekend’s National Championship, and it’s all happening on the Irish Sea within ten miles of Dublin city centre
The Howth 17s have been racing in their “little piece of Connemara that’s somehow in Leinster” for 122 years. And when some years ago they decided to make their annual championship into something special, they re-titled it the Howth 17…
Ilen enjoys a breeze, and can safely deliver cargo in an environmentally-friendly way
When the restored 56ft ketch Ilen of Limerick gets worthwhile wind conditions, she can give a good account of herself in terms of sailing speed. Yet no-one would claim that her rate of knots on passage afloat remotely compares to…

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