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Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

Tom MacSweeney

Tom MacSweeney

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Tom MacSweeney writes a weekly column for Afloat.ie. He also presents the radio programme Maritime Ireland on radio stations around Ireland.

Disappointed in Teneriffe - Peter Lawless is making repairs to Waxwing in the Canary Islands
Disappointment is always hard to take, but Peter Lawless is determined, even though he has, this time, failed in his ambition to become the first Irishman to sail around the world non-stop. The Kerry solo sailor left Kilrush Marina in…
Monkstown Bay Sailing Club Commodore, Sandy Rimmington
Monkstown Bay Sailing Club is based in the inner part of Cork Harbour and is buzzing with the start of its October League and, says Club Commodore, Sandy Rimmington, a revival of the 5O5 fleet and a plan to expand…
Dingle, the most westerly harbour in Europe was proposed as an America's Cup venue in 2003
It was discussed in the Seanad on Wednesday the fifth of March in 2003….. Senator Joe O'Toole, a teacher by profession was an Independent Senator, served as General Secretary of the National Teachers Organisation and President of the Congress of…
The Waterman brothers' Saxon Senator will compete in RCYC's AIB Autumn League
"We have a lot of quick boats entered, and it's going to be a very competitive and hotly-contested league," predicts the Royal Cork's Rear Admiral for Keelboats, Daragh Connolly, as he assembles fleet arrangements for the Autumn League, which begins…
The O'Brien family on Excelsior are competing in Schull Sailing Club's final Autumn League this Saturday
Close racing is expected at Schull Harbour Sailing Club in West Cork on Saturday when the final league racing of the season takes place. Sean Norris, Commodore at Schull Sailing Club, says: "We are wrapping up our season here this…
Restoring the gleoiteog Loveen, the second last Claddagh hooker still in existence
Ciarán Oliver's family history goes back over a hundred years to what was then known as the fishing village of the Claddagh in Galway. His great-great-uncle, Máirtín, was the last 'King of the Claddagh'. The 'Loveen' doesn't go back quite…
Lambs Week 2021 - 45 boats entered, 3 Destinations to be visited, a 'King of the Bay Pursuit Challenge' around the islands for both competitive and non-competitive boats
I just love the approach of Galway sailors in mixing serious racing and enjoyment. If British sailors can have Cowes Week and West Cork has Calves Week, in Galway, they have Lamb's Week which has "gentlemanly racing," plenty of "craic,"…
This month (August 2021) Peter Lawless plans to sail solo, non-stop, unassisted around the world from Ireland back to Ireland via the five great capes. He will be using a sextant and paper charts as primary navigation tools. If successful, he will be the first Irish person to complete a solo non-stop circumnavigation of the world
Peter Lawless hasn't time for anxiety as he makes final preparations for his solo sail around the world. He has set Saturday, August 21, for his departure from Kilrush Marina in the Shannon Estuary. Amongst those giving support to Peter…
Topper dinghies from Galway City Sailing Club sailing on Galway Bay
Galway Bay has a ring of sailing clubs dotted around the shoreline, says one of the founders of the Galway City Sailing Club, which is marking its 10th year in existence. It is an impressive grouping of maritime enthusiasts and…
Lahardane village memorial of local people going to board Titanic
Deep down, four miles beneath the surface of the North Atlantic, the wreck of Titanic is dying as Nature "takes it back to itself." So says Irish diver Rory Golden who is taking part in the current expedition to the…
Celtic Mist under maintenance at Howth
Ten years ago the family of Charlie Haughey offloaded their yacht, Celtic Mist, to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group. It took most of a year to refurbish it and the cost was put at around €80,000. The yacht was…
A busy Dungarvan Sailing Club pontoon
I won a unique prize at Dungarvan Sailing Club – for the most capsized sailor. It was many years ago when I was still able to sail a 12ft. dinghy. It was a Vagabond, a unique craft of its kind…
A Cork County Council issued photograph posed to illustrate how the council is dealing with the matter of pleasure craft and water safety along the Cork Coast
There is a notable increase in leisure craft on the water all around the coast. Several incidents have been reported of users not adhering to harbour safety regulations, and Cork County Council's Senior Harbour Master has issued a warning that…
Revived back in 1972, the Cong Galway Race will be sailed on Sunday, June 27.
Europe’s oldest and longest inland sailing race is part of the history of the West Coast of Ireland. The history of Galway itself claims that Ptolemy, the astronomer and mathematician born in 100 AD at Alexandria in Egypt and who…
Schull Harbour Sailing Club Commodore Sean Norris
A 12-mile "gentle reintroduction" started the racing season at Schull Harbour Sailing Club in West Cork. The 'Saturday Morning Taste of Sailing' sessions were restarted, with thirteen junior sailors in five boats bringing youngsters onto the water for club training.…
Cork Harbour cruiser racing has resumed
Cruiser racing has returned with a strong turn-out at the RCYC in Crosshaven for the start of evening racing..Eighteen boats came to the start line for the first Thursday evening cruiser league race. Despite rain, mist and fog, which had…
“There is a better way” than the present approach taken by government to the fishing industry, according to the Chairperson of Comhdháil Oileán na hEireann, the Islands’ Federation. “This is a matter of huge importance regarding island community livelihoods and…
National 18s and Mixed dinghies will start 2021 racing on Wednesday evening, June 9
This week the welcome sound will be coming to Scribbler. The 25-tonne travel hoist boat lift will be manoeuvred into position beneath her at Castlepoint Boatyard and Scribbler will be carried down Point Road, onto the Crosshaven slipway and lowered…
The LÉ Roisin detained the Punta Candierira approximately 95 Nautical Miles South of Mizen Head
After carrying out a high level of data and positional data analysis, the Naval Service has detained the Spanish fishing trawler involved in an incident with a Castletownbere trawler in Bantry Bay last Friday. As Afloat reported earlier, the LÉ…
Screengrab from video taken of the incident by the Irish trawler
The Sea Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA) says that a Spanish-registered fishing vessel was "operating within the waters of Bantry Bay and therefore within Ireland's 12-nautical mile limit" during what Irish fishermen in the South West claim was an attempted ramming…
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