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Displaying items by tag: Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association

The Dublin Bay Old Gaffers (DBOGA) two-day regatta at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club on the River Liffey was also a casualty of the weekend's nor'easter.

Disappointingly, the planned Parade of Sail on the capital's river had to be cancelled in the gusty winds. 

As regular Afloat readers know, the strong winds also cancelled the entire Dublin Bay Sailing Club (DBSC) Saturday Programme at Dun Laoghaire. The big seas on Saturday led to a reduced start for the annual Lambay Race but nevertheless vintage edition as part of the successful staging of the three day Wave Regatta at Howth Yacht Club. 

Afloat understands plans are now afoot to incorporate the cancelled DBOGA Poolbeg event into September's Howth DBOGA Round the Island (for the Leinster Plate) outing in early September. 

Meanwhile, the season will now see a cruising emphasis for PYBC with members heading off on summer cruises. The PBYC yacht Paradiso has already departed for Norway via the Faroes.

Published in Dublin Bay Old Gaffers

How can you make sense of a sport which features at least 143 World Championships? It’s a question which was first asked many years ago when the then International Sailing Federation (now World Sailing) accorded official “International” status to two more globally-distributed racing boat classes, thereby entitling them to stage their own World Championships.

Admittedly nowadays a growing class really does need genuine international strength to be so recognised. But some venerable classes still cling to that distinction despite being very much a leftover minority interest surviving over many decades in just a few countries. Thus while top level international sailing moves on with new versions of multi-class world championships in addition to the Olympics, these supposed relics of a bygone era cling on to their status - and the inalienable right to stage their own World Championship - with the all the determination of super-charged limpets.

The J/109 Mojito (Vicky Cox & Peter Dunlop, Pwllheli SC) will be contending the J/109 Easterns as part of Howth’s Wave RegattaThe J/109 Mojito (Vicky Cox & Peter Dunlop, Pwllheli SC) will be contending the J/109 Easterns as part of Howth’s Wave Regatta

Add to that the fact that sailing is a highly individualistic vehicle sport in which many participants sail regularly but don’t actually race at all, and you begin to appreciate how difficult it is to explain the basics of sailing’s structure, even to the most favourably-inclined enquirer.

But even by the standards of sailing’s great mysteries and complexities, this Bank Holiday Weekend is in a league of its own, though a comparison with the Superbowl is only to give an impression of the potential scale, as the ’Bowl is very much venue-focused whereas a typical hyper-busy Irish sailing weekend is literally all over the place.

Lough Ree YC – current MG Motor “Club of the Year” hosts Clinkerfest 2022Lough Ree YC – current MG Motor “Club of the Year” hosts Clinkerfest 2022

In addition to its fine clubhouse, Lough Ree YC – which is on a six acre site – provides extensive berthing, haulage and marina facilities.In addition to its fine clubhouse, Lough Ree YC – which is on a six acre site – provides extensive berthing, haulage and marina facilities

Add to that the fact that some boats and crews are oddly reluctant in this post-pandemic phase to pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and start all over again, and sometimes numbers are less than you’d expect. Yet equally, there are organisations – such as the Irish Sea Offshore Racing Association – which seem to have leapt into top-gear action from the off.

The Shannon One Designs – celebrating their Centenary Year – will be the stars of Clinkerfest. They attract sailors from every background – sailing this boat is Olympic Silver Medallist Annalise Murphy, with her mother Cathy Mac Aleavey, an Olympian in 1988, in the crew.The Shannon One Designs – celebrating their Centenary Year – will be the stars of Clinkerfest. They attract sailors from every background – sailing this boat is Olympic Silver Medallist Annalise Murphy, with her mother Cathy Mac Aleavey, an Olympian in 1988, in the crew.

Anway, if it’s variety which is the touchstone, we do well with the Wave Regatta under way at Howth, the Clinkerfest getting going at Lough Ree Yacht Club, and the Dublin Bay Old Gaffers two-day regatta at Poolbeg.

Add to that the usual Dublin Bay SC Saturday racing at Dun Laoghaire – a regatta in itself – the continuing movement in Galway Docks with the fleet in the Round Britain & Ireland Race 2022 being moved on after their separate 48-hour stopovers, plus regular club racing at many centres, and we get increasing life on the water.

Two of the new Cape 31s tuning up off Howth, with David Maguire’s Valkyrie in the foreground, and Dan O’Grady’s boat beyond. Unfortunately a bout of Covid means that O’Grady will not be competing in Wave. Photo: Annraoi BlaneyTwo of the new Cape 31s tuning up off Howth, with David Maguire’s Valkyrie in the foreground, and Dan O’Grady’s boat beyond. Unfortunately a bout of Covid means that O’Grady will not be competing in Wave. Photo: Annraoi Blaney

Nevertheless, we’re not out of the woods yet. As the fleet gathered for yesterday’s first race of Wave, conspicuous by her absence was Dan O’Grady’s new Cape 31, which had been keenly anticipating a three way debut with David Maguire’s Valkyrie and the Wright brothers’ boat. But Dan the Man has contracted Covid, and is out of circulation and the weekend’s racing with it. Unfortunately, we cannot print the first expletive reaction to this frustrating news on a website with a family readership, but it burnt the paintwork.

Published in W M Nixon

The saga of the building and sailing of the traditional Galway Hooker Naomh Cronan by Clondalkin Community in west Dublin goes back nearly thirty years. And though the story has regularly featured in Afloat.ie,
the various lockdowns had made it difficult to properly mark the end of a special era at Poolbeg Yacht & Boat Club in Dublin Port when Naomh Cronan was moved west to Galway Bay.

But with normality returning, back in January this year it was announced the international Old Gaffers Association had recognised the outstanding contribution made by Paul Keogh over many years in keeping
the Naomh Cronan ideal alive and active and sailing, until the time had arrived for the boat to be transferred to the traditional boat group in Galway City.

Naomh Cronan, the successful outcome of a very special Clondalkin community project. Photo: W M NixonNaomh Cronan, the successful outcome of a very special Clondalkin community project. Photo: W M Nixon

The OGA's supreme award for contributions to traditional and classic sailing is the Jolie Brise Cup, named in honour of the most famous gaff cutter in the world, the pilot cutter Jolie Brise built by Paumelle of Le Havre in 1913. Jolie Brise's working career was brief, as she was superseded during World War I of 1914-18 by steam and diesel-driven craft. But she then switched to a successful career - which still continues - as an offshore racer, long-distance voyager, and sail training ship of global renown, and the linking of Paul Keogh and the Naomh Cronan with this remarkable craft is a well-earned recognition of a very special effort.

OGA President Patrick Vyvyan-Robinson came to Dublin for the presentation to Paul Keogh, and in recognition of Dublin Port's special relationship with the traditional boat movement, which will be further celebrated next year when the Old Gaffers Association's 60th Anniversary Cruise-in-Company features a Dublin visit.

Jolie Brise - the most famous gaff cutter in the world gives her name to the OGA's premier awardJolie Brise - the most famous gaff cutter in the world gives her name to the OGA's premier award

Published in Dublin Bay Old Gaffers

The possibility that stellar jockey Rachael Blackmore, the winner of the Grand National in 2021 and the Cheltenham Gold Cup this year, might just be descended from a noted Dublin nautical family has emerged from traditional boat enthusiast and maritime historian Cormac Lowth’s research into the development of the Ringsend fishing community. He reveals these intriguing insights from time to time to several organisations, including fellow members of the Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association at their gatherings in the hospitable Poolbeg Yacht & Boat Club, one of the focal points of modern Ringsend’s friendly interaction with Dublin Port.

Two hundred years and more ago, with the ending of the Napoleonic Wars, the seas of western Europe were becoming safer for fishing fleets to go about their trade. And the port of Brixham in southwest England was the Silicon Valley of fishing development in its day, leading the way in the speedy improvement of boats and equipment to enable a rapid expansion of its fishing areas from 1818 onwards.

Brixham today is mainly for tourists, but 200 years ago it was a developmental powerhouse of the fishing industryBrixham today is mainly for tourists, but 200 years ago it was a developmental powerhouse of the fishing industry

This soon brought the new state-of-the-art Brixham trawlers into the Irish Sea, where they needed a base, and it was Ringsend at the rivermouth of Dublin’s River Liffey that proved most hospitable. So much so, in fact, that many of the Brixham fisherman – the all-powerful skippers and ordinary crewmen alike – married into Ringsend families to add new surnames and fresh vitality to the community. 

INTERACTION BETWEEN DEVON AND DUBLIN

This interaction and regular connection between Ringsend and Brixham lasted for around a hundred years, ended by World War I in 1914 and the creation of the Irish Free State in 1922. But by then, those distinctive Devon surnames like Biddulph, Ebbs, Upham and Blackmore were very much thought of as pure Ringsend, even if in the bigger picture - with Ringsend developing its own fishing industry with boat-building attached – the Murphy family had become dominant, with their mighty Ringsend-built fishing cutter St Patrick of the 1887 being possibly the largest vessel of the Brixham type ever built.

The Murphy family’s St Patrick at Ringsend in 1889. Possibly the largest vessel ever built of the Brixham type, she was constructed by the Murphy family and successfully fished by them for many years.The Murphy family’s St Patrick at Ringsend in 1889. Possibly the largest vessel ever built of the Brixham type, she was constructed by the Murphy family and successfully fished by them for many years.

But while Murphy is Ireland’s most frequent surname, Blackmore ranks something like 3,500th, which makes anyone thus named very special indeed. Nevertheless, there seems to have been a small but strong strain of Blackmores in Tipperary for some time, so Rachael Blackmore’s people may have got there by some means other than the Brixham-Ringsend route.

OPEN HOUSE AT POOLBEG

Either way, it is exactly the kind of topic for discussion enjoyed by traditional boat enthusiasts when they get together to talk of this and that, and on the evening of Friday, May 6th it’s going to be open house at Poolbeg Y&BC as the Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association and their friends gather for the public presentation to Paul Keogh (an Afloat.ie “Sailor of the Month” in January) of the international Jolie Brise Trophy for his 25 years of selfless devotion to keeping the community-owned Clondalkin-built Galway Hooker Naomh Cronan in good order and in full action afloat.

This return to normal life (after a remarkable two years-plus period in which the DBOGA have been Zoom-meeting pathfinders) will continue in the June Bank Holiday Weekend, with the three day DBOGA Regatta (aka The Liffey Regatta) at Poolbeg from June 3rd-5th, a remarkable festival in a working port.

The “City Haven” – Poolbeg YC & BC in Ringsend with its marina contrasting with the modern curves o the Aviva StadiumThe “City Haven” – Poolbeg YC & BC in Ringsend with its marina contrasting with the modern curves o the Aviva Stadium

Published in River Liffey

In the latest Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Zoom talk Mark Sweetman will recount his search for a nesting dinghy design to suit his needs and how he ended up building one himself.

For a long time, Mark wanted a hard tender that was good to row and sail, as opposed to the ubiquitous inflatable dinghy with an obligatory outboard motor. But while an inflatable dinghy could be deflated and stored easily under a berth, the storage of a hard dinghy would be a challenge. Then at the London Boat Show a few years ago he saw the solution – a nesting dinghy that divided in two with one half sitting neatly inside the other, so occupying only half the original space when stored.

There were no nesting dinghies – new or used – available for sale anywhere so there was no option but to build one himself. He selected the Chameleon, a stitch-and-glue spritsail rig designed by Danny Greene in the ‘70s, and widely used by blue water sailors.

He made some design changes to better suit north-west Atlantic conditions and constructed her during the lockdown in early 2021. He sailed her daily on the west coast during the summer of 2021 and became a big fan of the spritsail rig in the process.

In this talk Mark describes the nesting dinghies available, why he selected the Chameleon, the design changes he made, the construction, his sailing experiences with her during her first season and why he has become such a fan of the spritsail rig.

Full details on the talk in the flyer downloadable below as a PDF file

 

Published in Dublin Bay Old Gaffers

It may well be that Zoom sessions will continue as a significant permanent element in communication within the sailing community. But if the emergence from the pandemic continues reasonably well on course, there are many who hope that traditional human contact gatherings – with their attendant direct benefit on clubhouse finances – will soon return in abundance.

Nevertheless, with the mood of caution which is prevailing initially, the opportunity for a good Zoom session is not to be missed, particularly if it’s based around a topic that has already given several clubs and organisations a worthwhile subject for an entertaining Zoomathon.

Hal Sisk’s meticulously researched and well-thought-through presentation of “Back to the Future”, the story of bringing new life to Dublin Bay’s most famous classics in a project with Fionan de Barra and boatbuilder Steve Morris, has already provided much food for thought in a series of online club sessions through the dark days.

The Dublin Bay 21 Garavogue making her first visit in re-built form to Howth in September 2021. Photo: Annraoi BlaneyThe Dublin Bay 21 Garavogue making her first visit in re-built form to Howth in September 2021. Photo: Annraoi Blaney

But now it all has been taken to a new level with the news that the DB21 revival has been short-listed for an international classics award. So it’s timely - and then some - that this week’s Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association weekly Zoom session at 8.0pm on Thursday, January 27th is the comprehensive DB21 Back to the Future show with Hal.

DBOGA – where Adrian “Stu” Spence recently succeeded Johnny Wedick as president - have used their sessions on Zoom and live pre-covid as a fund-raiser for Howth Lifeboat, with €8,000 being presented last September, and they hope that those watching the DB21 show will continue by donating at least €5

The details of the DB21 meeting are:
• Topic: Hal Sisk Talk
• Time: January 27th 2022, at 20.00hrs
Meeting ID: 839 3901 8107

Passcode: 256648

Presentation of the DBOGA donation at Howth Lifeboat with (left to right) Fred Connolly (Howth Lifeboat cox’n) Johnny Wedick (President, DBOGA), and Capt Colm Newport (Operations Manager, Howth Lifeboat) Photo RNLI/Rose MichaelPresentation of the DBOGA donation at Howth Lifeboat with (left to right) Fred Connolly (Howth Lifeboat cox’n) Johnny Wedick (President, DBOGA), and Capt Colm Newport (Operations Manager, Howth Lifeboat) Photo RNLI/Rose Michael

Published in Dublin Bay Old Gaffers

DBOGA invites you to join their 2021-2022 Winter Monthly Zoom Sessions, opening with "The Spanish Armada in Ireland", which will be given by Cormac Lowth on Thursday 28th October at 20.00hrs.

In 1588, one hundred and thirty heavily armed ships of the Spanish Empire set sail with the intention of invading England. After a series of misfortunes, mostly due to bad weather, the fleet was dispersed and attempted to return to Spain west of Ireland, and in all at least twenty six of the ships were wrecked on the Irish coast.

Cormac will be outlining the story of the Armada to include the circumstances which led to its formation, and the many disasters which befell the ships during their unsuccessful attempt at invasion.
He will also be discussing the fate of many of the fleet which were wrecked upon the coast of Ireland as they attempted to get back to Spain, and many of the discoveries that have been made of these vessels in subsequent years.

Cormac will be showing a wealth of rare illustrations of many of the treasures and archaeological objects that have been discovered by divers on the various wrecks.

Please come early to be sure of getting a good seat!

DBOGA Fundraising for HOWTH RNLI: Pre-Covid, we listened to talks together at Poolbeg Y&BC while passing the Yellow Welly around for your €5 donation. In Zoomland, we can't
 do that, but the RNLI still urgently needs funds. Please click on: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/DBOGAHowthLifeboat to dob your €5 in. Last year, DBOGA Zoom raised €8,000. Thank you!

The details of this Zoom meeting are:

  • Topic: Cormac Lowth Talk
  • Time: October 28th 2021, at 20.00hrs
  • Link to join the meeting is here 

  • Meeting ID: 857 6481 9985
  • Passcode: 413443
Published in Dublin Bay Old Gaffers

When Covid 19 hit last year, fundraising for Howth RNLI Lifeboat through street flag day collections, St. Patrick’s Day Irish Coffee Mornings, Golf Classics, Boat Jumble Sales and Vintage Car Runs all came to an abrupt halt, Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association came to the rescue by organising a winter series of Zoom talks for their members and others.

The talks were presented by a range of interesting speakers: Dennis Aylmer, Michael Weed, Mark Sweetnam, Ed Maggs, Cormac Lowth, Gary McMahon, Peter Lyons & Adrian Spence, Mick Brogan, John Leahy, Jarlath Cunnane, Rob Goodbody, Joe Walsh, Richard Nairn, Sean Walsh, Sean Cullen, Brian O Gaiblin and Rik Janssen.

The fantastic result from these very interesting presentations is a donation of €8,000 from Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association to Howth RNLI who continue to rely on voluntary contributions and legacies for income. It is only through donations such as this that Howth RNLI continue to provide our volunteer lifeboat crews with the boats, facilities, equipment and training that are essential to save lives at sea.

Howth RNLI presented DBOGA with a Letter of thanks from the Institution for their generous support.

Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association held their annual race at Howth Saturday 4th September with 12 boats competing having sailed from Strangford, Ramsey - Isle of Man, Poolbeg Yacht & Boat Club and Dun Laoghaire to compete. The fleet raced back to Poolbeg Lighthouse on Sunday 5th September.

Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association will be kicking off this winter’s fundraising programme for Howth RNLI with another series of talks beginning in October.

Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association can be proud that their generosity will help us to continue to respond quickly and efficiently to those in danger on the sea, today and in the future.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

The many months of Lockdown in its various forms have prevented the Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association from physically holding their regular monthly winter meetings at Poolbeg Yacht & Boat Club in Dublin Port. Each of these friendly gatherings – with specialist speakers on a wide variety of maritime topics - traditionally raised substantial sums for Howth Lifeboat through the simple and relatively painless expedient of the attendees on arrival dropping a minimum of €5 into an RNLI yellow welly on a table by the door.

The pandemic shutdowns might have stopped this intensely personal programme in any form, were some ordinary body involved. But the DBOGSA are made of sterner stuff. And as we've commented before on Afloat.ie, the more die-hard of a traditionalist any sailing enthusiast might be, the more he or she seems to be comfortably on top of modern communications.

Thus with tech whizzes like Mark Sweetnam and the current DBOGA Hon Sec/Treas Darryl Hughes on the job, the DBOGA smoothly transformed its monthly winter gatherings into an eclectic series of online Zoom talk/discussions – many of them previewed in Afloat.ie - which continued the lifeboat fund-raising as part of the online process, and provided the bonus of an edited version of the monthly show appearing on YouTube, usually within 24 hours.

A long-established and friendly relationship: the Howth 17s come to visit the Old Gaffers Association during their Golden Jubilee Celebrations at the Poolbeg Y & BC in 2013. Photo: W M Nixon   A long-established and friendly relationship: the Howth 17s come to visit the Old Gaffers Association during their Golden Jubilee Celebrations at the Poolbeg Y & BC in 2013. Photo: W M Nixon

Now that the light of lockdown-lifting is on the horizon, it is time to take stock, and Johnny Wedick, President of the DBOGA, has received an appreciative letter from Rose Michael, leader of the Howth RNLI Fund Raising Crew, with the news that the DBOGA "Lockdown Lolly" has reached €7,571, and there's probably more in the pipeline.

As it is, it's a tidy sum. So when the DBOGA hold their annual Cruise-in-Company to Howth in August - by which time it's hoped proper freedom of movement will have arrived – there'll be one of those slightly wacky ceremonies where the Old Gaffers hand the Howth RNLI an enormous cardboard cheque with the final amount inscribed thereon. Upon which, everyone will doubtless then spring to the mainbrace, and great will be the splicing thereof.

Dublin Bay Old Gaffers raise €7,571 online for Howth Lifebo
Published in Dublin Bay Old Gaffers

Frances Edwards & Ed Maggs are clearly the most incompetent cruisers, as Ed says himself, for they have completely failed in their modest ambition of a circumnavigation of the British Isles by stalling on the West Coast of Ireland, and settling down for good in South Kerry, as outlined in Afloat.ie here

Ed will tell the complete story on Zoom on Thursday, December 10th for the Dublin Bay Old Gaffers Association and their guests – the true tale of how they ended up here, and talking along the way of three boats which contributed to this gravitational pull: Sibyl of Cumae, a Fife 35 foot linear rater, at one time owned by Henry Donegan Jr., son of the famous Harry; Talis II, owned by Ed's Dublin-born grandfather, which has so far survived three complete sinkings; and Betty Alan, their own boat, a "genuine fake of a gaff ketch", now based in Glengarriff.

Betty Alan, the "genuine fake gaff ketch", racing at Mullaghmore Regattta in SligoBetty Alan, the "genuine fake gaff ketch", racing at Mullaghmore Regatta in Sligo. On a round Britain and Ireland cruise, she managed ton get as far north as Donegal, but was irresistibly drawn back to Kerry. Photo: Brian Mathews

DBOGA Fundraising for Howth RNLI: Pre-Covid, DBOGA listened to talks together at Poolbeg while passing the Yellow Welly around for minimum €5 donations. In Zoom Land, that can't be done, but the RNLI still needs funds.

Please click on www.justgiving.com/fundraising/DBOGAHowthLifeboat and thank you.

The details of this Zoom meeting are:

Topic: Ed Maggs Talk 

Time:
 Thursday,
Dec 10, 2020, 20:00
Link to join the meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82770821027
Meeting ID: 827 7082 1027

Published in Dublin Bay Old Gaffers
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