Menu

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

Historic Boats
The Brittany-built American mini-cat in Skol ar Mor colours gets ready for sailing on a Shannon lake
There’s an informal international network of wooden boat adherents - both classic and traditional - which has found in Ireland an increasingly useful source of recognised designs of intriguing boat types to provide many building challenges for skilled craftsmen and…
Today's start, at 2pm off ‘the Grassy,’ is a traditional sail race starting point for generations of sailors
Today's Crosshaven Traditional Sail pursuit race attracted all types of plus keelboats for a harbour pursuit race, just part of this weekend's line up of attractions in Cork Harbour this weekend.  Today's start, at 2pm off ‘the Grassy,’ is a traditional sail race starting point…
S.S. Shiedhall awarded the UK's 2018 regional flagship for the National Historic Fleet is seen in Southampton with backdrop of 'Solstice' class cruiseship Celebriry Eclipse which Afloat adds is 'home-porting' out of Dublin Port this season. Excursion trips in Solent waters can be made on the Shieldhall which is a former Glasgow based sewage dumping vessel built 1955 by Lobnitz & Co Ltd, Renfrew.
#HistoricBoats - Volunteers on the UK heritage steamship, SS Shieldhall, are celebrating having received one of the highest accolades from a national organisation. The Southampton-based vessel has been chosen as the 2018 regional flagship for the National Historic Fleet. (Click…
Ilen arrives in Baltimore for her launch. See launch video below
A video, by Paul Fuller, features the restored historic ketch Ilen motoring down the Ilen River towards Baltimore for her celebratory launch last week at the Wooden Boat Festival in the West Cork town. Conor O'Brien's famous traditional vessel, that has been faithfully…
Ilen steaming down river to the Baltimore Wooden Boats festival. Scroll down for more photos and a pdocast
On Saturday I was at the relaunch of the Ilen at the Wooden Boats Festival in Baltimore, West Cork. It was a special occasion, one of emotion and memories, but also pride in what determined people can achieve. I have…
The restored ketch Ilen makes her public debut at the Baltimore Woodenboat Festival
In 1926, Tom Moynihan and his shipwrights on the waterfront in Baltimore built the 56ft ketch trading Ilen to Conor O’Brien's designs at their boatyard in the heart of the West Cork fishing village writes WM Nixon. However, Baltimore nowadays…
Fully rigged and full restored and finished in  a bright new style, the Ilen is afloat in time to be pride of place at the Baltimore Wooden Boat Festival this weekend
The hard-working boat building team behind the restoration of the historic ketch Ilen in West Cork have successfully launched the 1926–built vessel in time for this weekend's Wooden Boat Festival at Baltimore. As Afloat.ie reported earlier this week, the final touches were being…
Worthy of celebration and support. Cork City’s own Bantry Boat, the Fionnbarra, sailing in style on Lough Neagh, the setting for this year’s biennial Atlantic Challenge in July
Poetry with a seafaring flavour by Theo Dorgan, Paddy Bushe, Mick Delap and the late Richard Murphy will bring a distinctive nautical mood to an evening of absorbing interest at the National Maritime Museum in Dun Laoghaire next month in…
A ship transformed. While she is still very much a serious seagoing proposition, the restored 1926-built 56ft Conor O’Brien ketch Ilen will take to the waters this weekend in Baltimore with her new and positive educational purposes emphasised by a fresh colour scheme and a brighter style
The restoration of the 56ft 1926-built ketch Ilen by Liam Hegarty and Fachtna O’Sullivan and their team in the boatyard at Oldcourt near Baltimore in West Cork, working in concert with the Gary Mac Mahon-directed Ilen Boat-Building School in Limerick,…
Work continued on Ilen over the weekend and her appearance at Baltimore is eagerly awaited
The final touches are being put to the Ilen at Hegarty’s boatyard in Oldcourt, Skibbereen, prior to her going down the Ilen River this week, heading for Baltimore. There, on Saturday afternoon, at the Wooden Boats Festival, will be her first…
A memorial perforated picture installation was unveiled on the headland by Fred Graepel, whose company donated the installation. Scroll down for more photos
A ceremony took place at the Old Head of Kinsale in Cork at the weekend to commemorate the sinking of the Lusitania and its 1,191 victims 103 years ago. The ocean liner was torpedoed at 2.10pm on 7 May 1915…
Baltimore Wooden Boat Festival (May 25th-27th) Has Historic Ketch Ilen as Flagship
The 1926-built 56ft Conor O’Brien ketch Ilen, painstakingly restored in a visionary joint operation by the Gary MacMahon-directed Ilen Boat Building School in Limerick working in concert with master shipwrights Liam Hegarty and Fachtna O’Sullivan at Oldcourt Boatyard near Baltimore,…
After the longest winter in memory, Spring comes slowly to Connemara, and a new boat is berthed at Letterfrack Pier. Photo: W M Nixon
The wind is at last from the west, the easterlies of the longest winter in memory have finally relented, and it’s time to be in the west of Ireland and Connemara, time to eavesdrop on two senior boat restorers as…
Removing the tarpaulin from Ilen as work continues on the historic vessel
Away back in 1997 I stood on the quayside at Alexandra Basin in Dublin Port, watching a very old boat being unloaded from a freighter … I was the only reporter there. The media generally weren’t interested in the story…
The form of the re-born Saoirse is now sufficiently complete for meaningful comparisons to be made with the original
While the 56ft 1926-built restored ketch Ilen is a flurry of activity at Oldcourt near Baltimore in West Cork with the final stages of work before her re-launching late next month, in the Top Shed nearby where Conor O’Brien’s pioneering…
The essence of effective simplicity – the schooner America as she was in 1851, when her victory in the race round the Isle of Wight resulted in the trophy becoming the America’s Cup.
There must be very few people in sailing who don’t know something of the America writes W M Nixon. She was the “low black schooner” which came across the Atlantic from New York in 1851, and won a race around…

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

mgm sidebutton
bjmarine sidebutton
xyachts sidebutton

Featured Associations

ISA sidebutton
ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Events

tokyo sidebutton
sovscup sidebutton
vdlr sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton
viking sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
sellingboat sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating