Menu

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

Tom MacSweeney

Tom MacSweeney

Email The Author

Tom MacSweeney writes a weekly column for Afloat.ie. He also presents the maritime radio programme This Island Nation on community radio stations around Ireland.

Lough Ree's new lifeboat
As a new lifeboat arrived in Lough Ree on Tuesday an envelope arrived on my desk from the RNLI, painting a perspective of the lifeboat service from a different viewpoint. As Afloat reported earlier, the new Atlantic 85 on Athlone’s…
Round the World Sailor Damian Foxall Catches Up on Learning at Poolbeg
When Henry Cromwell in 1654 as then Chief Justice of Ireland, decided to rid the city of Dublin of everyone of Irish blood by ordering them to move two miles outside the capital, his decision gave the impetus which created…
Steve Morris
Following the interest in last week’s Podcast on the question – Why Do We Own Boats – and the views on the topic expressed by Brother Anthony Keane of Glenstal Abbey, I’ve been intrigued by the number of people who…
The Dufour 44 Godot finished third
Kinsale Yacht Club’s October Whitesail series concluded with three yachts in a tie for the top places in the ECHO fleet writes Tom MacSweeney Valfreya (Leonard/Riome), Justus (Dan Buckley) and Godot (John Godkin) all finished on 11 points. After one…
Cork’s criminal court office
A judge at a Cork court has told two outboard motor thieves that the targeting of outboard engines for theft is a particularly disquieting crime, writes Tom MacSweeney. At Cork Circuit Criminal Court, Judge Sean Ó Donnabháin refused to grant…
MBSC winner - (from left to right): Harry Pritchard, Class 2 winner at Monkstown Bay Sailing Club; Ciaran McSweeney, Commodore MBSC and Ronan Kenneally, Class 1 winner
Monkstown Bay Sailing Club’s October Cork Harbour dinghy league ended with Class 1 top place going to Laser sailor Ronan Kenneally. He had a total of 8 points from six races, winning two, second in three, discarding one placing. He…
Brother Anthony Keane
Scribbler, my Sigma 33 yacht, was hauled ashore this week. Now she stands in her cradle in Castlepoint Boatyard in Crosshaven in Cork Harbour for her out-of-the-water winter rest. It is the annual end-of-season ritual. There are owners who don’t…
Adrian O'Connell at Kilrush Boatyard
When I walked into Adrian O’Connell’s office in Kilrush Boatyard on the edge of the Shannon Estuary in County Clare, a photograph on the wall caught my attention – a boat sailing at speed, red sails dramatic atop a black…
ICOYC President Andy Anderson
The shortage of young sailors on racing boats is a universal problem. That is the opinion of Andy Anderson, President of the International Council of Yacht Clubs. It is one of the issues which clubs need to deal with in…
What Is To Be The Future of Irish Sailing?
My Podcast this week is an interview with the Chief Executive of Irish Sailing, Harry Hermon, in which he discusses a decline in yacht ownership, lifestyle changes which have reduced the time people can give to organised club sailing, the…
Naneen about to be launched
I won’t be challenging Hal Sisk’s confident declaration that he is Chairman of “the world’s oldest cruiser-racer class!” His offer to anyone to challenge him sounded across Kilrush Boatyard to where I had driven over 400 kilometres from Cork to…
Cruiser racing in the Cobh to Blackrock Race in Cork Harbour
This will be an exceptionally busy sailing weekend in Cork Harbour. Cork Dinghy Fest, the Cobh-to-Blackrock Race, the National 18s Championships, the Irish Multihull Championships, the RS 200, 400 and Feva Nationals, the Mirror Southerns, the 29er Southerns and the…
Sailors discuss the finer points of Rankin sailing
Ardmore is a lovely village on the Waterford coastline, not far from Youghal. It’s a seaside resort and was once a busy fishing village, though that period has largely passed. The meaning of its name in Irish is ‘Great Height’…
Wooden boats gathered at Baltimore
A revival of interest in the traditional working craft of West Cork started in Baltimore in 1997 with the construction of the Noble Shamrock, a 33-foot long mackerel yawl built by Hegarty’s Boatyard at Old Court. This was done from…
The Maiden crew with Angela Heath (nee Farrell) right in front row
One of the things I have done in my life is an iceberg watch on the bow of an offshore yacht racing in the Atlantic during the dark hours of night, keeping an eye out for ‘growlers’. These are small…
Kinsale's Gina Griffin, the World Disabled Sailing Championships sailor came second overall in the European 2.4 Para section at Gydnya, Poland Regatta in 2017
Four hundred and fifty participants have registered for the Watersports Inclusion Games according to Dave O’Sullivan, Commodore of Kinsale Yacht Club where a Disability Awareness Training Day this Saturday is a prelude to the hosting of the Games on the…
Waterford City River Rescue Community Lifeboat
There are 15 Community Rescue Boats around Ireland. These are a nationwide group of independent, voluntary rescue boats, which reflect the concern of local communities for water safety in their areas and which were generally established following local drowning tragedies.…
The Betelgeuse oil tanker sinks at Whiddy Island in Bantry Bay forty years ago
The families of the 50 victims of the Betelgeuse oil tanker tragedy at Whiddy Island in Bantry Bay have decided to take legal action against the State. The French-Irish Association of Relatives and Friends of the Betelgeuse are applying to…
 Nine yachts entered last weekend's Monkstown Bay Sailing Club’s Cruiser Class race
The combined clubs Cork Harbour league concluded on Saturday, run by Monkstown Bay Sailing Club’s Cruiser Class and with nine yachts racing writes Tom MacSweeney The race started at No.9 buoy with a beat to No.5, then swinging on a…
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…
Page 1 of 7

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 Webcams

webcam 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
mansfield sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
sellingboat sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating