Ship boat

New tall ship for Newry

Historic Newry Harbor will once again see the majestic sight of a tall ship regularly sailing the Newry Channel with the arrival of a magnificent 1892 heritage ship later this month, thanks to a grant from the National Lottery Heritage . Funds.

Silvery Light Sailing, a sailing charity based in Newry, has received almost a quarter of a million pounds from the fund for a boat restoration workshop and a Tall Ship sailing project.

The WIN-based charity with a workshop at Greenbank Industrial Estate in Newry has been awarded a National Lottery Heritage Fund grant of £244,975 to acquire the 1892-built Heritage Tall Ship LEADER and further expansion of their workshop traditional boat building and community sailing programs. The 130-year-old Brixham trawler will sail to Newry in the coming weeks.

Funding for the 2022 Summer Maritime Legacy Project has been made possible by National Lottery players who raise over £30million every week for good causes in the UK.

The project opens a new chapter in the history of LEADER, a survivor of the fleets of sailing fishing boats that once fished in the Irish Sea. The Heritage ship is once again destined to become a familiar sight in local ports providing a unique sailing experience for young people and local community groups, open days and festivals. Maintained and equipped by volunteers, the project will help preserve an important link with the region’s rich maritime and fishing past.

The new tall ship Leader will soon sail up the Newry Channel along the Carlingford Lough Greenway towards the Albert Basin.  Photography: Columba O’Hare
The new tall ship Leader will soon sail up the Newry Channel along the Carlingford Lough Greenway towards the Albert Basin. Photography: Columba O’Hare

Gerry Brennan, Chairman of Silvery Light Sailing, said: “We are a maritime charity offering an annual program of residential voyages which give young people and community groups across Northern Ireland the opportunity to discover and enjoy a taste of life at sea on a traditional sail. boat. For many, it can be an empowering, life-changing experience, discovering new strengths and self-confidence while forming lasting friendships”

Ten community and youth groups from across Northern Ireland will follow a program of heritage workshops and a five-day residential trip. They will train the crew sailing the ship using the power of the wind, learning the traditions of the sea, how to cook, clean, maintain and take care of themselves and the heritage ship.

Dr Paul Mullan, Northern Ireland Director at the National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “It is great news that, thanks to National Lottery players, we have been able to support Silvery Light Sailing to ensure that this amazing heritage tall ship can be preserved for years to come. to come, meaning local communities and visitors alike can learn more about Northern Ireland’s maritime heritage. We know that heritage can play a huge role in bringing people together and the community sailing programs that groups engaging in maritime heritage for the first time are a fantastic example of.

LEADER was built as a sailing trawler. Uniquely during each voyage, crews will undertake sampling experiments at sea using mini trawling methods to determine the level of micro plastic pollution around our coastline.

Through community workshops, Silvery Light Sailing practices traditional skills and methods for the maintenance of tall ships like LEADER and the restoration of several small heritage boats that have a local connection. This new project funded by the National Lottery has not only secured an important part of Northern Ireland’s maritime heritage, but allows for the expansion of workshop activities and the possibility of bringing in more volunteers.

Silvery Light Sailing welcomes new volunteers. For more information on volunteering opportunities as a crew member or to learn more about boat restoration, visit their website WWW.SILVERYLIGHT.ORG or email [email protected]

Information on future public events and opportunities to embark on LEADER and discover its maritime heritage will be available on the Silvery Light Sailing social networks @SilveryLight

You can follow @HeritageFundUK and @HeritageFundNI on TwitterFacebook and Instagram