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Historic Boats
The 56ft 1926-built Ilen setting her full traditional rig off the rugged coast of Greenland
Limerick’s restored 56ft Conor O’Brien-designed 1926-built traditionally-rigged trading ketch Ilen emerged yesteray evening (Sunday) from the eastern end of Prince Christian Sound to start her passage back to Ireland writes W M Nixon. The magnificent Sound - noted for its dramatic…
The Limerick ketch Ilen in fine order at Narsaq in southwest Greenland this week
The traditional restored 56ft trading ketch Ilen of Limerick, under the command of Paddy Barry, is serenely continuing her progress homewards along Greenland’s southwest coast despite that rugged and sparsely-populated coastline suddenly becoming global news, thanks to the revelation that…
The 1905-built Iolaire in her glory years under Don Street’s ownership, when she cruised extensively in the Caribbean, crossed the Atlantic seven times, and took part in the Golden Jubilee Fastnet Race of 1975
They say bad news travels fast. But the news that the 48ft 1905-built yawl Iolaire has been lost, after an inadvertent gybe in heavy weather drove her onto rocks – fortunately without loss of life or injury - off Ibiza…
Researchers Discover Vikings Arrived in Ireland When the Population was in Serious Decline
New research has found that the population of Ireland was in decline for almost 200 years before the Vikings settled. The research from Queen’s University Belfast’s School of Natural and Built Environment is the first of its kind and has…
The 113-year-old Water Wag ‘Pansy'
The theme of this week's National Heritage Week for 2019 is ‘Pastimes'. In recognition of this, the 113-year-old Water Wag dinghy‘Pansy,’ will be put on public display on the East Pier, Dun Laoghaire on Dublin Bay on Tuesday 20th August…
Symbolic link – Ilen’s squaresail with the distinctive Salmons Wake logo on display in St Mary’s Cathedral in Limerick during the Spring, and in use off the coast of Greenland this summer as the ship continues her mission in researching the Atlantic salmon story, and developing cultural links between Limerick and the Greenland capital of Nuuk
The 1926-built restored 56ft Limerick trading ketch Ilen has completed the varied shoreside and coastal aspects of her research voyage to Greenland writes W M Nixon. This took her as far north as Ilulissat beyond the Arctic Circle to give…
 The magic and mysteries of the west – traditional boats of Connemara shaping up for racing at Kinvara on Sunday
When the late Tony Moylan cajoled the notion of Cruinnui na mBad at Kinvara into being in 1979, times were different writes W M Nixon. The idea was to celebrate the Gathering of the Boats in the old days, when…
Dr Michael Brogan, Cruinniu organiser, with  the plaque of late Cruinniu founder Tony Moylan designed by John Coll and erected at Kinvara pier.
The Galway man who is regarded as a leading light in the revival of interest in Irish turf trading craft has been immortalised in his home harbour writes Lorna Siggins Figurative sculptor John Coll has designed a plaque depicting the…
Stately workhorses of the west – the Galway Hookers showcase their highly individual style at the Cruinniu na mBad at Kinvara this weekend in a three day festival
After a week of thinking maybe too much about modern and ultra-modern boats contesting the Fastnet Race and Calves Week at Schull, it’s a comforting relaxation to settle gently into contemplation of this weekend’s annual Crunniu na mBad (The Gathering…
Naomhóg crew Liam Holden (grey cap), Eamonn Ó Muircheartaigh (red cap), Breanndán Ó Beaglaoich and Sean Mac an tSíthigh during their row and sail across Cape Breton in Nova Scotia
When Kerry Blasket islanders built the naomhóg for fishing, they would never have dreamed the same craft might transit Nova Scotia writes Lorna Siggins However, four Irishmen have now rowed and sailed a similar design across Cape Breton in northern Canada.…
Summer in Greenland is brief but spectacular – the Limerick ketch Ilen in idyllic conditions off the majestic coast near Nuuk
The traditional 56ft Limerick trading ketch Ilen will shortly begin her long return voyage from west Greenland to the Shannon Estuary, following the successful completion of the several strands of research and exploration in the Ilen Project’s Salmons Wake programme writes…
Light airs in Rutland
In one of the most international regattas for the International 12 Foot Dinghy of recent years, entries came from Uganda, Holland, Canada, England and Ireland. This historic dinghy class permits either a crew of one of two. There is no…
Eoin Ryan at the stern of 'Free State C1'
In recent podcasts I’ve reported on the Cork Harbour T Boats, a Class now extinct apart from the restored original boat, which I highlighted last week here; the successful revival of the Rankins; the restoration underway of the gaff-cutter Lady…
Ilen in gentle conditions in Greenland’s Umanap Surdlua fjord this week, when the opportunity was taken to set every sail in the ship
While the restored 1926-built 56ft traditional trading ketch Ilen of Limerick may have arrived in the Greenland capital of Nuuk last weekend in harsh weather – albeit with a favourable southerly wind – since then conditions have become much gentler,…
Ilen's crew on their arrival at Nuuk late this morning (Friday) - Gary Mac Mahon on left, Paddy Barry second right
After a swift but cold 26-hour run up the Labrador Sea along the southwest coast of Greenland from Paamuit, Limerick’s restored 1926-built 56ft ketch Ilen reached her primary destination, the Greenland capital of Nuuk, late this morning (Friday) writes W…
The Ilen in Paamuit in Greenland, where she found perfect shelter while a southerly gale blew itself out in the Labrador Sea
The restored 56ft 1926-built traditional ketch Ilen lingered in the southwest Greenland port of Paamuit for the past couple of days while a vicious southerly gale blew itself out in the Labrador Sea writes W M Nixon. It was an…

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