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Displaying items by tag: Books

#MarineWildlife - Ireland’s whales and dolphins feature in a new atlas of the country’s wildlife, as The Irish Times reports.

The Atlas of Mammals in Ireland 2010-2015, published by the National Biodiversity Data Centre, maps the distribution of 77 mammal species both on the island and in its territorial waters.

Cetaceans account for almost a third of this number, among a whopping 68 species of whales and dolphins that frequent Irish waters.

The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group’s Dr Simon Berrow relates his long-term study of the Shannon Estuary’s thriving population of bottlenose dolphins in a book that celebrates an encouraging national habitat for species that struggle not so far from our shores.

Afloat.ie readers might remember a previous atlas concentrating on Ireland’s abundance of marine mammals that was published in 2013, and for which this new book makes a useful comparison.

Published in Marine Wildlife

#OmeyIsland - Omey Island in Connemara is the subject of a new book by a local woman charting its remarkable history.

Strands of Omey's Story by Bernadette Conroy shows there's much more to the lands off Claddaghduff than the annual beach horse race, as Galway Bay FM reports.

Despite not being a true island, as its only cut off from the mainland when the tide is in, Omey has seen its population dwindle from over 100 a century ago to just a single resident in more recent years.

Published in Island News
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#WaterSafety - Irish Water Safety's "long and proud history" has been paid tribute in a new book by author Tiarnan O'Sullivan

The History of Irish Water Safety is the culmination of two years of research by the Cork-based writer, who has been involved with IWS since 2002 both as a pool and beach lifeguard and as an instructor and committee secretary.

The result, published just in time for Christmas, comprises 288 pages of reflections and remembrances from people involved in the organisation right back to its very beginnings in 1945.

Available to order from Irish Water Safety, The Long Walk, Galway or online via [email protected], the book costs €25 for the hardback edition and €15 for the paperback.

Published in Water Safety

#Burren - The unique landscape of the Burren and the Cliffs of Moher on Ireland's Wild Atlantic Way is the subject of a new book by one of Ireland's leading photographers.

This Is The Burren, Carsten Krieger's photographic ode to the world-famous region, will be launched by Rose Hynes, a native of North Clare and chairperson of Shannon Group plc, in Hyland's Burren Hotel in Lisdoonvarna, Co Clare, this Sunday 29 November.

The Burren and the Cliffs of Moher – which, along with Waterford's Copper Coast, was last week designated with UNESCO Global Geopark status, as the Irish Examiner reports – is among Ireland’s most enigmatic and magical landscapes.

The 176 photographs featured in This Is The Burren – some of which are featured on Krieger's website HERE – capture the essence of the Burren, including its weathered karst landscape, the ever-changing light; the exotic flora; the elusive wildlife; the tombs, cairns, forts and churches; and the people who call the Burren their home.

Carsten Krieger, who was born in Germany, visited the Burren after learning it was the inspiration for JRR Tolkien’s Middle Earth. More visits followed before he and his wife finally decided to move to Co Clare to be close to the unique landscape.

After publishing his first book, Carsten moved on to other projects, but said: "The Burren always stayed close to my heart and in all the books I have made over the past decade the Burren pops up in each of them in one way or another."

Carsten returned to the Burren to take more photographs in 2011, a project that turned into his latest book.

"Although four years sounds like a long time I could easily have spent another couple of years exploring and photographing the Burren, and most likely will do so. Every trip brings something used and unexpected and a reason to return another time," he said.

Cllr James Breen, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, described the book as "a valuable photographic record of one of the jewels in the Irish tourism crown."

He added: "Carsten's photographs illustrate perfectly how remarkable the landscape of the Burren really is and why the work of organisations such as the Burren and Cliffs of Moher UNESCO Geopark in heritage management and sustainable development throughout the region is critical.

"The book also is a tribute to how man and nature are deeply entwined in the Burren and have shaped each other over the millennia."

Carol Gleeson, project manager for the Burren and Cliffs of Moher UNESCO Global Geopark, said her and her team were "delighted to have been able to support Carsten and the publication of this book which demonstrates the enormous wealth of history and geological significance associated with the Burren and Cliffs of Moher."

She continued: "Since 2006, Clare County Council has been working in the Burren to develop a truly sustainable tourism destination that gives direct benefits to the local community, promotes and celebrates local culture and produce, preserves the environment and provides a great experience for our visitors.

"Carsten's photographs gives credence to this amazing landscape and the wide range of fantastic work that is ongoing throughout the Burren through sustainable practices."

Carsten Krieger's This Is The Burren, which is introduced by local author and broadcaster PJ Curtis, is published by The Collins Press and is available in all good bookstores and online at www.collinspress.ie.

Published in Coastal Notes

#RNLI - Christmas came early at Donaghadee Primary School yesterday (Tuesday 24 November) as children enjoyed a reading of an RNLI festive story.

Accompanied by Rookie the RNLI Reindeer and coxswain Philip McNamara, Donaghadee RNLI’s deputy second coxswain John Ashwood read The Big Christmas Rescue to a group of pupils in Primary One.

The kids were able to hear about the station’s all-weather lifeboat and learned about the lifesaving service that the RNLI provides.

The story is set on a wet and windy Christmas Eve night. But when Santa crashes his sleigh in the sea, volunteer RNLI lifeboat crew members go to the rescue.

The Big Christmas Rescue children’s book is also customisable, making it a perfect seasonal gift.

It can be personalised to put young readers at the centre of a magical festive story, and the gift-giver can select the name, gender and skin tone of the child in the story, making it a truly unique present for their own special little person.

"I really enjoyed reading the story to the children," said Ashwood. "They all seemed to enjoy the book and it was great to tell the children about the lifesaving service we provide at the RNLI.

"The Big Christmas Rescue is a really beautiful book and it’s the perfect gift for children this Christmas. I love the way the book can be personalised, putting readers at the heart of the story. Importantly, all profits from sales of the book will help the RNLI continue to save lives at sea."

To order a personalised copy of The Big Christmas Rescue, go to RNLISHOP.org/BigRescue. The last order date for the book to guarantee delivery before Christmas is Sunday 13 December 2015.

All profits from book sales will be used to fund the charity’s lifesaving services, delivered by volunteer lifeboat crews and lifeguards who between them rescued 10,496 people last year – more than 1,400 across the island of Ireland alone.

Published in RNLI Lifeboats

#Diving - One navy man's "accidental entry" into diving in the 1960s was the birth of what is today Ireland's most advanced underwater unit.

As the Irish Examiner reports, a new book by Martin Buckley titled The Ninth Ship - The Irish Naval Diving Section charts the history of the Naval Service's subaquatic division, which began when Lt Joe Deasy was sent to the UK for months of torpedo anti-submarine training.

Diving happened to be part of the curriculum, and Lt Deasy returned to Haulbowline in 1964 as the Naval Service's first qualified diver.

Within a decade the navy had chalked up its first major team diving operation, on the IRA gunrunning vessel Claudia, and later built a reputation as rescue experts, assisting in the wake of 1979's Bantry oil tanker explosion and the Air India disaster in 1985 among others.

The Irish Examiner has more on the story HERE.

Published in Diving
Tagged under

#HowToNavigate - A new revised edition of bestselling sailing guide Learn to Navigate continues its reputation as the accessible, no-nonsense guide for every boater.

Basil Mosenthal and Barry Pickthall take the reader through every step, from reading charts to understanding tides and much more, giving even novice sailors a sound practical basis in navigation.

Learn to Navigate is available now via Amazon and all good nautical booksellers.

Published in Book Review
Tagged under

#Weather - Reeds Weather Handbook for Sail and Power is an essential pocket-sized guide that every coastal and offshore boater will want for their next trip.

Author Frank Singleton takes a practical approach, with plenty of clear diagrams to help you understand the weather and what it means for your sailing.

Reeds Weather Handbook is available from Amazon and all good nautical bookshops.

Published in Book Review
Tagged under

#Books - Not content with being Afloat's Sailor of the Month for March this year, boat enthusiast Hal Sisk has put much of his efforts in 2012 into his new publishing venture Peggy Bawn Press, which now has a brand new online presence.

Sisk is commendable for his work both in researching Ireland's seafaring history - making it accessible to less academic mariners - and in restoring ancient boats that provide an insight into the past.

His work on the 1880s clipper Peggy Bawn in particular is a fascinating window into a time of rapid change in design, something he's also made the focus of Peggy Bawn Press with a biography of Scottish boat designer George Lennox Watson by Martin Black - which received a rave review from our own WM Nixon this part March.

And just days ago Tom McSweeney had some kind words to say about Sisk's own new and beautifully illustrated publication Dublin Bay: The Cradle of Yacht Racing, a title he says is sure to provoke debate about Dublin Bay's legacy in the sport.

Both books are available for purchase via the Peggy Bawn Press website, while the latest news on publications can be found on the official Peggy Bawn Press blog.

Published in News Update

#Angling - The day in 1935 when an American dentist was astounded by a Connemara gillie's way with the local salmon is just one of the 67 anecdotes contained within Fishing’s Strangest Days.

As Derek Evans highlights in his latest Angling Notes column in The Irish Times, Tom Quinn's book is "full of extraordinary but true stories from more than 200 years of angling history".

From dead-sheep bait to whopper-sized catches, intoxicated trout and flying pike, the latest edition of Quinn's collection compiles the choicest gems of bizarre fishing facts. 

The publisher's blurb says it all: "Consider the Oxford scientist who in 1910 discovered the marvellous life-giving properties of brandy to fish who had otherwise gasped their last. Or how about the nine-year-old boy fishing for trout who caught a large mussel—containing no less than 40 pearls—and managed to earn more in one day than his father, a farm worker, had earned in the last five years.

"Then there’s the case of the two Americans who had an argument about whether it would be possible to cast a fly from the roof of the Savoy hotel into the Thames. The dispute was finally settled when one of them secured himself to a chimney, and, with the help of a policeman who stopped traffic on the Embankment, finally achieved the feat."

Fishing's Strangest Days is "like a tin of sardines - packed with fishy, bitesize tales guaranteed to have you hooked!" Published by Portico, an imprint of Anova Books, it's available in all good bookshops priced at €14.50.

Published in Angling
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The Half Ton Class was created by the Offshore Racing Council for boats within the racing band not exceeding 22'-0". The ORC decided that the rule should "....permit the development of seaworthy offshore racing yachts...The Council will endeavour to protect the majority of the existing IOR fleet from rapid obsolescence caused by ....developments which produce increased performance without corresponding changes in ratings..."

When first introduced the IOR rule was perfectly adequate for rating boats in existence at that time. However yacht designers naturally examined the rule to seize upon any advantage they could find, the most noticeable of which has been a reduction in displacement and a return to fractional rigs.

After 1993, when the IOR Mk.III rule reached it termination due to lack of people building new boats, the rule was replaced by the CHS (Channel) Handicap system which in turn developed into the IRC system now used.

The IRC handicap system operates by a secret formula which tries to develop boats which are 'Cruising type' of relatively heavy boats with good internal accommodation. It tends to penalise boats with excessive stability or excessive sail area.

Competitions

The most significant events for the Half Ton Class has been the annual Half Ton Cup which was sailed under the IOR rules until 1993. More recently this has been replaced with the Half Ton Classics Cup. The venue of the event moved from continent to continent with over-representation on French or British ports. In later years the event is held biennially. Initially, it was proposed to hold events in Ireland, Britain and France by rotation. However, it was the Belgians who took the ball and ran with it. The Class is now managed from Belgium. 

At A Glance – Half Ton Classics Cup Winners

  • 2017 – Kinsale – Swuzzlebubble – Phil Plumtree – Farr 1977
  • 2016 – Falmouth – Swuzzlebubble – Greg Peck – Farr 1977
  • 2015 – Nieuwport – Checkmate XV – David Cullen – Humphreys 1985
  • 2014 – St Quay Portrieux – Swuzzlebubble – Peter Morton – Farr 1977
  • 2013 – Boulogne – Checkmate XV – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1985
  • 2011 – Cowes – Chimp – Michael Kershaw – Berret 1978
  • 2009 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978
  • 2007 – Dun Laoghaire – Henri-Lloyd Harmony – Nigel Biggs – Humphreys 1980~
  • 2005 – Dinard – Gingko – Patrick Lobrichon – Mauric 1968
  • 2003 – Nieuwpoort – Général Tapioca – Philippe Pilate – Berret 1978

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