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Displaying items by tag: Galway Hooker

The risks to fishermen in Galway Bay during the first world war is theme of a Heritage Week talk by Donncha Ó hÉallaithe this Sunday evening.

Ó hÉallaithe will be followed by Dr Micheál Ó Fathartaigh of the Dublin Business School, who will examine the policies adopted by the new Irish state to promote the fishing industry.

He will also refer to episodes such as the Cleggan disaster, when 45 fishermen lost their lives off the Galway coast during a strong gale on October 27th, 1927.

The talks hosted by the Galway Hooker Sailing Club are free. The two talks will begin at 7 pm, with a short break between each, on Sunday evening, August 21st, in the Claddagh Hall on Nimmo’s Pier.

There will also be a photo exhibition which will feature the Truelight, the hooker built in Galway in 1922, along with historic images of the Claddagh.

The Truelight was built near the Spanish arch by Reaney boatbuilders in 1922, and it survived the Cleggan disaster of 1927 which Dr Ó Fahartaigh's presentation will refer to.

More information is here

Published in Galway Harbour
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Thunderstorms forced postponement of racing at the Cruinniú na mBád in Kinvara, Co Galway on Sunday for safety reasons, and the fleet will reconvene on Thursday.

However, An Mhaighdean Mhara was first boat home in the turf race from Parkmore to Kinvara on Saturday when hundreds of people attended the 43rd annual event.

The bád mór was followed by An Tonaí in light winds and an incoming tide, while gleoiteogs competed in the outer bay.

The St Catherine won the gleoteoig class, followed by Naomh Ciarán and An Phantra.

The Naomh Stiofáin won the gleoiteog beaga class, with second place going to the McHugh, according to festival organiser Dr Michael Brogan.

Sun was shining with record temperatures when the climín or seaweed contest took place in the inner harbour.

Climin race 2022 at Cruinniu na mBad Kinvara with Karen Weekes and Orla Knight the first female competitors Photo: Michael BroganClimin race 2022 at Cruinniu na mBad Kinvara with Karen Weekes and Orla Knight the first female competitors Photo: Michael Brogan

Solo transatlantic rower Dr Karen Weekes and Orla Knight became first females to compete, and the race was won by PJ and Michael from An Cheathrú Rua.

There to pay tribute to the festival effort was Independent TD for Roscommon-Galway Michael Fitzmaurice, who said he had taken a break from baling hay.

vRoscommon-Galway TD Michael Fitzmaurice (Ind) on board An Tonaí at Parkmore pier, before it left for Cruinniú na mBád in Kinvara Photo: Michael BroganRoscommon-Galway TD Michael Fitzmaurice (Ind) on board An Tonaí at Parkmore pier, before it left for Cruinniú na mBád in Kinvara Photo: Michael Brogan

“This is a long way out of my constituency, but these people have to be saluted for the work that has gone in to keeping this tradition alive,”Fitzmaurice said, standing on the deck of An Tonaí before it left with its turf cargo from Parkmore pier.

“It is keeping a torch lit, and it is great to hear that a lot of young people are involved in sailing these traditional vessels,” he said.

“This what Ireland is good at, all the villages around here are thronged with people today,” Fitzmaurice said.

“After a lot of beating and twisting and turning with Government, it has been agreed that when you own a bog, as people do in Connemara, you can cut it, you can give it or you can sell that turf yourself,” Fitzmaurice said.

Fine Gael Junior Housing Minister Peter Burke is due to sign the final regulations into law in the autumn, banning smoky fuel sales on retail premises and online, while preserving the entitlement of those with turbary rights to sell or give away their turf supplies.

“We have to remember that Bord Fáílte (former title for Fáilte Ireland) was the State body showing the person footing the bit of turf in the west of Ireland and the open fire – and sadly some people in Dublin 4 don’t understand our way of life, our heritage, our tradition, and, above all, our fuel supply,” Fitzmaurice said.

Declan O’Rourke, John Faulkner, Tony Trundel, Steve Johnston and Paul Mulligan were among musicians performing in Kinvara, and a hurling tournament was held in memory of festival founder Tony Moylan.

In 1979, Moylan persuaded three of the oldest wooden-built trading vessels with their distinctive “tumblehome” hulls to revive the sea journey from south Connemara to south Galway, where the limestone landscape meant communities had little access to turf.

Published in Galway Hookers

After a forced pandemic suspension, the Cruinniú na mBád festival of traditional craft returns this weekend to Kinvara, Co Galway.

The opening ceremony tonight, Friday, August 12th, will include speakers Dr Karen Weekes, the first Irish woman to row solo across the Atlantic, poster artist Lily Johnston, and local musicians attending will include Declan O’Rourke, John Faulkner, Tony Trundel, Steve Johnston and Paul Mulligan.

Kinvara’s Friday farmers’ market runs, as usual, this afternoon, while a hurling tournament will take place this evening in memory of festival founder Tony Moylan.

At the 40th anniversary cruinniú August 2019, a plaque dedicated to Moylan was unveiled at the Kinvara pier head, along with a wooden bench made by Kinvara men’s shed group.

Padraig Bailey tidies up the turf on the deck of the Galway Hooker, An Capall, after arriving off Parkmore on the the first leg of the turf race at the 2011 Cruinniu na mBad FestivalPadraig Bailey tidies up the turf on the deck of the Galway Hooker, An Capall, after arriving off Parkmore on the the first leg of the turf race at the 2011 Cruinniu na mBad Festival Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy

In 1979, Moylan persuaded three of the oldest turfboats – Galway “bád mór” hookers, An Capall, An Tonaí and An Maighdean Mhara- to revive a sea journey from south Connemara to south Galway.

The wooden-built trading vessels with their distinctive “tumblehome” hulls had delivered turf to south Galway, Clare and the Aran Islands for generations, as neither the limestone Burren on Clare’s coast nor the Aran islands had landscape for turf.

An Tonai sails past Dunguaire Castle to Kinvara pier at the finish of the turf race at Cruinniu na mBad.An Tonai sails past Dunguaire Castle to Kinvara pier at the finish of the turf race at Cruinniu na mBad Joe O'Shaughnessy

As Afloat reported earlier, that vital freight journey will be remembered tomorrow, Saturday, August 13th, when a fleet loaded up with turf sods at Parkmore pier at 2.30 pm will sail into Kinvara at around 5 pm.

Saturday’s first event is horseshoe throwing from 12 noon, a village fete at the quay from 1 pm, the “Green Island” swim at 4 pm, and the fleet “sail-in” at 5 pm. Live music in Tully’s Bar on Saturday night will be performed by the Vibe Tribe.

On Sunday, August 14th, there will be outdoor mass at 12 noon and both horseshoe throwing and the village fete resume.

While Tully’s bar hosts a live “trad” music session from 3 pm, the race of hookers, including the bád mor, leath-bhád, gleoiteog and pucán, will set off from 3 pm out in the bay.

The cargo is thrown ashore from the Galway hooker An Tonai at Kinvara Pier following the 2011 Turf Race at Cruinniu na mBadThe cargo is thrown ashore from the Galway hooker An Tonai at Kinvara Pier following the 2011 Turf Race at Cruinniu na mBad Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy

A children’s fancy dress contest takes place at 4 pm on Sunday, and the hotly contested climín or seaweed raft race is on the water at 4pm. Among the participants will be a team including transatlantic oarswoman Dr Karen Weekes.

The cruinniú award ceremony is scheduled for 5 pm, and there will also be an auction of paintings, before it closes on Sunday evening.

Published in Galway Hookers

When the highly-respected Organising Chairman Dr Mick Brogan declared - in May 2020 - that the annual Cruinniu na mBad - the Gathering of the Boats - could not be held in August at Kinvara in face of the spread of the COVID pandemic, "See You In 2021" became the mutually-supportive greeting among the festival's many enthusiasts.

Yet if ever there was a "Super-spreader Event Competition", then Kinvara's three days of intensive festivities afloat and ashore would win by a large margin. So there was no way it could be held in 2021 either.

But this weekend from 12th to 14th August, Cruinniu na mBad 2022 at Kinvara is back in turbo-powered style, complete with the promise of good weather to do it justice. It is a celebration of just about every aspect of life in the west of Ireland, presented with a nautical flavour. And apart from the traditional unloading of the turf which will have been sailed in across Galway Bay by the hookers from south Connemara, for those whose main interest is sailing the focus of the racing takes place right off the pierhead on Sunday afternoon.

An ancient festival, Cruinniu na mBad at Kinvara was revived on an annual basis in 1979An ancient festival, Cruinniu na mBad at Kinvara was revived on an annual basis in 1979

Published in Galway Hookers

The first appearance of a Galway Hooker on the Dutch canals is likely to create a lot of attention and there may even be links found between the traditional West of Ireland boat and historic vessels in Holland 

The ‘Galway Hooker Sailing Club’s Loveen Tour’ will take the 97-year-old vessel to represent Ireland’s traditional nautical heritage at NaWaKa, the Scout International National Water Kamp held every four years in the Netherlands with over 7,000 participants.

Loveen sailing on Galway BayLoveen sailing on Galway Bay

Loveen, whose story captivated the Galway sailing community during her two-year restoration, will be accompanied by 40 Galway Sea Scouts, their leaders and family members at the event.

Loveen during her refurbishment in GalwayLoveen during her refurbishment in Galway

The gleoiteog was originally built in Galway in 1925 and gifted by the Dolan family in 2011 to become a sail training vessel for the Port of Galway Sea Scouts. The Scouts needed help to make her seaworthy, so the Galway Hooker Sailing Club volunteers brought Loveen back to her former glory, starting work in 2019. In October 2021, she was launched and has made an impressive sight since when seen sailing in the Claddagh and on Galway Bay.

Next month Loveen will join a flotilla of other national sailing vessels during Nawaka, from August 7 to 18 in Landgoed Zeewolde, 40 km east of Amsterdam.

Colette Furey of the Galway Hooker Sailing Club told me (below) about the new voyage of Loveen…

Published in Tom MacSweeney
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Weather has once again forced the postponement of Féile an Spidéil, the regatta for traditional craft in Co Galway.

The regatta, which was originally set for June 12th off An Spidéil on the northern shores of Galway Bay, had been due to take place today, June 19th.

However, a forecast of force five winds gusting to force six from a north-west to northerly direction been issued for the west coast from Mizen to Erris Head for Sunday afternoon.

A large fleet of traditional craft had been anticipated for the 2022 event, but safety of crew and boats dictated another deferral to a date yet to be agreed.

In a statement issued in Irish on Saturday evening, organiser Jimmy Keady said that “ de bharr cúrsaí aimsire agus sábhailteacht na mbád agus criúnna, tá geallta an lá amárcah curtha ar athló”.

“Tá fórsa 5 le gustaí fórsa 6 geallta ag a 3 [a chlog] amárach,”the statement read.

The regatta programme aimed to include races for báid mhóra and leath bháid in the Galway hooker class.

Bádóirí an Cladaig, based in Galway city, had also planned to send several craft to the event, availability of crews and weather permitting.

The three city-based boats include the recently refurbished 31 ft leath bhád Mairtín Joe, the 32 ft leath bhád Croí an Cladaig, and the 40 ft Naomh Cronáin.

The Mairtín Joe was originally built by the Cloherty brothers in Mweenish, Carna in 1979 for Noel Ó Tuairisc in Indreabhán, Co Galway, and was sold on to Judge John Lindsay in Dublin. Before his death, he donated the vessel to Galway for promotion of sail training and tourism.

Published in Galway Hookers
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Féile an Spidéil, the regatta for traditional craft in Co Galway, has been postponed by a week due to weather.

A large fleet of traditional craft is anticipated for the 2022 event, which has been rescheduled for Sunday, June 19th.

It had been due to take place this weekend, but weather factors dictated a decision to put it back a week.

The regatta programme will include races for báid mhóra and leath bháid in the Galway hooker class, according to organiser Jimmy Keady.

Bádóirí an Cladaig, based in Galway city, aims to send three craft to the event, availability of crews and weather permitting.

The three city-based boats include the recently refurbished 31 ft leath bhád Mairtín Joe, the 32 ft leath bhád Croí an Cladaig, and the 40 ft Naomh Cronáin.

The Mairtín Joe was originally built by the Cloherty brothers in Mweenish, Carna in 1979 for Noel Ó Tuairisc in Indreabhán, Co Galway, and was sold on to Judge John Lindsay in Dublin. Before his death, he donated the vessel to Galway for promotion of sail training and tourism.

Peter Connolly of Badóirí an Cladaig said that the community group had the vessel since 2010, with Galway company Cold Chon sponsoring transport west.

Master builder Joe Joyce completed what is now effectively a replica of the original, he said.

Feile an Spideil is scheduled for 2 pm on June 19th.

Published in Galway Hookers
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A large fleet of traditional craft is anticipated for Féile an Spidéil which takes to the water off An Spidéil, Co Galway, on June 12th.

The regatta programme will include races for báid mhóra and leath bháid in the Galway hooker class, according to organiser Jimmy Keady.

Bádóirí an Cladaig, based in Galway city, aims to send three craft to the event, availability of crews and weather permitting.

The three city-based boats include the recently refurbish 31 ft leath bhád Mairtín Joe, the 32 ft leath bhád Croí an Cladaig, and the 40 ft Naomh Cronáin.

The Mairtín Joe was originally built by the Cloherty brothers in Mweenish, Carna in 1979 for Noel Ó Tuairisc in Indreabhán, Co Galway, and was sold on to Judge John Lindsay in Dublin. Before his death, he donated the vessel to Galway for promotion of sail training and tourism.

Peter Connolly of Badóirí an Cladaig said that the community group had the vessel since 2010, with Galway company Cold Chon sponsoring transport west. Master builder Joe Joyce completed what is now effectively a replica of the original, he said.

Feile an Spideil is scheduled for 2pm on June 12th.

Published in Galway Hookers
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Slipping out into Galway Bay before sunrise, several traditional craft from Galway Hooker Sailing Club participated in the Darkness into Light national fundraiser on  Saturday.

“When a community comes together, it’s amazing what can be done,” the club said after the highly successful event took place.

The vessels were on the water even as hundreds of people gathered from 4 am on Saturday in Salthill to walk the promenade and shoreline in aid of the charity Pieta.

The city-based club was one of a number of sailing and boating clubs around the country to support the national event, which raises awareness about suicide and fundraises for the support work conducted by Pieta.

Galway City Sailing Club and Galway Bay Sailing Club also responded to the on-water appeal.

“This morning the Galway community came out to walk, run, sail and motor into the day as the sun rose,” Galway Hooker Sailing Club said.

“It was a beautiful morning and we would like to thank everyone,” it said.

Over 3.7 million euros had been pledged to the charity last night, close to its 4 million euro target. Some 54,000 euros of this was raised across 19 venues in Galway, on and off water.

Founded in Dublin in 2006, Pieta was established to provide free, accessible one-to-one counselling to people suffering from suicidal ideation, engaging in self-harm or to those bereaved by suicide.

Published in Galway Hookers

Tributes have been paid to Badóirí an Cladaigh for illuminating their fleet of Galway hookers for the St Patrick's Day festival.

Galway-based photographer Pat Cantwell captured images of the fleet of vessels on the Claddagh basin in Galway city.

The group, which is one of two organisations in Galway city dedicated to restoration of the traditional craft, also lit the Naomh Crónán in Ukrainian colours as a mark of solidarity with the people of Ukraine since the Russian invasion began on February 24th.

It also illuminated the gleoiteog Rosabel, named after the charity Rosabel's Rooms and moored at Raven Terrace. The gleoiteog was restored by Bádóirí an Cladaigh after it was acquired in 2008.

Rosabel's Rooms was established by Suzanne McClean and Gary Monroe in memory of their daughter Rosabel, who died suddenly in April 2017 when she was just 16 months old.

The charity provides family-focused bereavement suites in hospitals, designed in collaboration with the Irish Hospice Foundation.

Cantwell's photos can be viewed on Facebook here

Published in Galway Hookers
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