She’s 213 feet long from bowsprit to stern, weighs in at 586 tons, carries 13,000 square feet of sail and on her way to Australia now. She is the magnificent three-masted barque SV Tenacious, sailing all the way from the UK by way of the Panama Canal and she’s due to arrive in time for the Parade of Sail that opens the Australian Wooden Boat Festival on February 10, 2017. This is no ordinary ship, but the largest wooden boat built in the UK in the last 100 years. That would be reason enough to welcome Tenacious as a feature vessel at the 2017 festival, but it’s actually more remarkable than that, because the ship is specially designed to make it possible for disabled sailors to ‘work the ship’ on her ocean-going, blue-water passages. Physical disability, sensory disability, even intellectual disability are no barriers to experiencing the trip of a lifetime aboard this amazing ship. Able-bodied voyage crew are equally welcome and the proportions usually work out to half and half.
We are particularly proud to welcome Tenacious to Australian waters (she will stay on in Australia for several months) because until now, disabled Australians have not had the opportunity to sail any ship like this, as there is no purpose-designed vessel of this size based here in Australia.
There are many long-passage sectors available on the website of the Jubilee Sailing Trust here, and while Tenacious is with us in Hobart, everyone is welcome to visit the ship and see the remarkable adaptions made to enable all sailors to get involved in tall ship adventure. We are encouraging service clubs, para-athletic organisations, carers and individuals to start planning now to raise funds to enable disabled sailors (and those who’ve never sailed at all) to enjoy this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
For details of what’s available, go to the website of the Jubilee Sailing Trust and stay subscribed to the AWBF newsletter for news of local opportunities while the ship is in Tasmanian waters.