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Tall Ships Blog — An Adventure in Arendal Posted on

The crew and guests on Leader are having a great sail around Norway as part of the Tall Ships Races.

Speaking to skipper Ben today he said it’s one of the best sails of his life so far, which is saying something for someone who has spent so much time at sea.

Here are the latest diary entries from some of those on board…

Day 3: Thursday, July 17, 2014 (Part 1)

This is my first time on Leader although I am now a veteran of the Tall Ships Races, having taking part as either a trainee or permanent crew member since 1998.

This year I have found myself on the Brixham trawler Leader, the oldest out more than 100 veseels here this year.

Being on Leader I have experienced a lot of firsts this year. She is the smallest vessel I have done the races on and this is my first time without square sails.

We are on passage to our second port in the part of the races known as Cruise in Company. This is where the fleet visits ports en route to the next race point. The pace is a lot less frantic then the week of racing which precedes and follows it. It’s a great chance to explore the coastline and get to know your crew, and the crews on other vessels you are sailing along with.

It’s the mixing of cultures and crews which I particularly enjoy about Cruise in Company. Where else is there a better place to experience this than along the stunning and beautiful Norwegian coast?

So far I have enjoyed sailing closer to the sea, and Leader has been kind to me by no pitching and rolling too much on a large swelling sea. I will admit I was a little sick but I put that down to eating too much curry and cake (Anne’s food is just delightful).

We have so far enjoyed a stay in Arendal and am now on passage to Flekkefjord, which is described as a small fishing port at the tip end of a majestic fjord. I was wondering if Leader has been here before in her commercial days as she seems to know the way.

Ben Swain, Relief Mate.

Part 2

I am the lucky competition winner, having won the voyage through Trinity’s Facebook competition. I have never been sailing before in my life.

The current 24 hours from Arendal has turned in to a very pleasant journey, however the previous 24 hours was a very different experience. I got a little seasick and found it hard at times but I battled on and was pleased I made it through what seemed like a long night, rewarded by a pleasant stay in port.

After a great lunch, prepared by Anne, we refuelled and set sail and I am glad to say that the seasickness subsided. Either my body had adjusted to life at sea, or the seasick pills I got in Arendal are really working. The cost me about the same as a new house. Boy is Norway expensive!

Danielle Preira


Ben keeps watch on Leader

Tall Ships Blog — Arendal Here We Come! Posted on

Leader is on her way to Bergen, in Norway, with 12 guests on board, along with her five crew, as part of the 2014 Tall Ships Races.

Having left Fredrikstad at the start of the week, the group all currently taking the spectacular Norwegian coast ahead of arriving at their final destination on Friday, July 25th.

Here’s how they have been getting on…

Day 2: Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Today we are sailing to Arendal and is the first of our overnight passages. We have been divided in to subgroups: Port Watch and Starboard Watch. We do three hours on and three hours off.

The night time shifts are really fun as, here in Norway, the sun does not set till midnight. It was really beautiful and we got to see all of the stars.

We are looking forward to seeing Arendal, home of the film Frozen.

Lucy, Port Watch.

Leader Cruise in Norway 2014

Tall Ships Blog – Cruise in Company Posted on

The Tall Ships Challenge may be over, but Leader is still in the midst of the Tall Ships Races.

Thank you to all our sponsors for making the first leg such a success. We will be posting updates on how the young crew —who sailed from Amsterdam to Fredrikstad — got on shortly.

Twelve guests joined Leader  and her five crew on Monday for the second part of the Tall Ships Races, heading from Fredrikstad to Bergen. Here’s how they have been getting on…

Day 1: Tuesday, July 15, 2014.

We woke up at 8am so we were ready for breakfast at 8.30am as we were due to take part in the parade of sail later in the day.

After breakfast we had happy hour where split in to two watches: Port and Starboard.  Port Watch were cleaning up down below and Starboard were cleaning the deck area. Once we had finished we gathered around the foredeck for safety briefings. We were taught how to use our life jackets and were issued with our oilskins, Tall Ships t-shirts and wristbands. It was then time for some lunch, which we enjoyed on deck in the sunshine.

After lunch we tidied away and got ourselves ready for the parade of sail. There was a slight delay as some of the larger square riggers were unable to leave port. This gave us some extra time to kill which we spent getting to know each other.

When it was time for us to leave for the parade, we motored out of Fredrikstad with everyone waving us off. We were given a gun salute as we left. Heading 10 miles down the fjord we were surrounded by amazing views of beautiful scenery and wonderful ships.

Later on we arrived at a small bay called Skipstadsand where we moored alongside Tecla, Morning Star, and Black Diamond.

The crews from Black Diamond and Morning Star came on board for banoffee pie and strawberry cheesecake. After making friends with some other trainees, we went ashore to explore the island before heading back to Leader for some sleep to prepare for a new day of sailing.

Fergus, Port Watch.

Leader at the Tall Ships 2014

Anne’s Foodie Blog 2: Sweet-Toothed Sailing Snacks Posted on

Leader’s cook Anne shares some of her famous recipes… (with a special guest appearance this week from the boat’s mate, Katie).

All the recipes in this blog are recipes I can do standing on my head, because as a boat cook sometimes there is a need to; and if not standing on your head certainly without two feet firmly placed on the ground and with the added challenge of various members of crew asking you if they can open your kitchen up to check the engine belts or standing on your work surfaces to do goodness know what important nautical task.

I hope these recipes, and the others in the blog, will be enjoyed by all those that come sailing with Trinity…let me know how you have got on replicating them in the kitchen at home.

This week we have…

Katie’s Night Watch Shortbread

There is one thing I like more than to waking up to a clean tidy galley after 8 hours sleep and that is waking up to a clean tidy galley with a dish of freshly baked bread, or even better shortbread.  Anchor watch, although essential, can be tediously long on a calm low risk night. What better way to break up the tedium and cheer up the crew than home baking.  Katie baked these delicious biscuits on watch in Sandown Bay, on the Isle of Wight, and we devoured them somewhere off Selsey Bill.

Anne’s Gooey Chocolate Brownies 

There are various brownie recipes that I use, most of them have a great deal to thank St. Mary of Berry for.  Her recipe for dark indulgent chocolate and walnut brownie, with its addition of coffee, is sublime for afternoon tea. However, for pudding brownies, I use a formula that has worked for me for years.

To download these recipes please click HERE

Katie's Night Watch Shortbread

Tall Ships Challenge — Exploring Denmark and Norway Posted on

Leader’s crew have been having a huge amount of fun at this year’s Tall Ships Races. Here is the Challenge team’s final report from their epic 14-day voyage.

Although the Tall Ships Challenge team have finished Race One, Trinity will continue to post blog updates keeping you informed of Leader’s next voyage progress from Fredrikstad to Bergen, and then the second race from Bergen to Esbjerg.

Day 12: Calm seas and Rugged Ports.

Today we continued sailing off the Danish coast, heading to Oslofjord. The sea has been very calm.

During my watch we dropped off at a rugged-looking Danish port to restock fuel and water, after which we enjoyed lunch in the sunshine.

I came back on deck in the evening at 11pm to see a full moon reflecting across the water which was very pretty to see.

Tom, Cool Watch

Day 13: Swimming and Beach Barbecues.

Today we stayed in a fantastic fjord just outside Fredrikstad. This gave everyone a chance to cool off and go for a swim.

Another boat, Morning Star, pulled up alongside and joined us, it was fantastic. Later on that evening we took the dinghy ashore and had a BBQ on the rocks. An amazing welcome to Norway!

Reece, Ice Watch.

Day 14: Goodbye and Thank You.

Today is the last day, which is very sad. Everyone is disappearing one by one which makes everything very strange. The general feeling among us all is that we all had an amazingly fun time and we are going to miss it greatly.

Most of today was spent getting the vessel ready for the next group joining Leader. Thank you to our sponsors, thank you to Trinity, thank you to our crew members, thank you fellow Challenge team. Thank you all for an amazing opportunity — the greatest opportunity I have ever had.

Alice, Bay Watch.

Leader's Race One crew gather for a final photograph

Tall Ships Challenge — Ups and Downs Posted on

Leader’s Race has begun but the weather has been working against them. Here’s how the Tall Ships Challenge team have been making the most of their experience.

Day 9: Slow going.

The site of all these amazing square riggers is something I will never forget. It has been great fun, but sadly the wind has been non existent.

I was fortunate enough to be helming Leader across the start line of the race, which was incredibly cool. Sadly the wind didn’t pick up through the rest of the day. We are still sailing, just really slowly.

Jo, Cool Watch

Day 10: Waves likes skyscrapers.

My day started at 12.00 due to the rotation of the watch as my shift was between 12.00 and 16.00. We came up on deck with a plate of fresh food: Feta cheese, tuna sandwiches, crackers, and fruit.

At this point of the day the sea was fairly calm, with a little wind. About an hour in the wind began to increase so we brought down the topsail, which went well as there were many of us around to help get it down.

As our watch was about to finish Katie brought up an amazing ginger cake, baked by the wonderful Anne. After I inhaled the cake I scurried down to my bunk for some shut eye, which was impossible due to the squeezing and rocking of the boat.

I was awakened suddenly, practically falling out of my bunk, as Leader was heading through a near gale seven. I stumbled in to the galley to find a drenched Colin saying: “Give me a camera those waves are serious.” I grabbed my camera, headed-up on deck and it was seriously scary, stomach tensing stuff. Waves and splashed were covering the deck and everyone up there. Stupidly I wasn’t wearing any oilskins so, thanks to a reminder from Colin, I headed back down below and was delighted to see some food: stew and dumplings, moulded by Ben. This warmed me up nicely and went down a treat. Sadly the same couldn’t be said for Ben’s which ended up on the floor as a big wave tilted the boat to port.

I changed in to my wet weather gear and headed back up on deck, where I became part of the “super crew” to reef the main sail (this was very hard!). The wind picked up, with waves like skyscrapers, covering the deck like an ice rink. We were pulling on ropes until our hands were raw. After about 10 to 15 minutes of reefing the sail, is again the turn of Ice Watch to take over, working 11pm to 2am.

I took the helm and then the night sky dropped. The mist picked up and the waves were still humongous. on the deck, and in the sea, were little phosphorescence glowing blue. It was like stars in the sea and on the floor.

We were moving at six knots. For the last 30 minutes of the watch it chucked it down and there were massive flashes of lightning across the sky. It was very cold and this extreme weather showed us how tough we all were.

Stan asked: “What would you normally be doing on a week night?” I said: “Be in bed.”

Reece, Ice Watch

Day 11: It’s not the winning  that counts, it’s the taking part.

After a stormy night, the weather today was amazing with glorious sunshine and light winds. Sadly, after some mathematical calculations the light winds meant we were left with little option but to turn the engine on motor some of the way back to get back in to port on time. It was a similar story for several of the other vessels, the wind was working against us and the distance to cover was too large.

Fear not, our spirits remained high and an amazing tiramisu helped boost morale even more.

Sam, Ice Watch

Jo Coomber up on Leader's deck

Tall Ships Challenge – Anchors Away Posted on

Leader’s Tall Ships Challenge Team have now begun their sailing adventure, heading out of Harlingen to make the long voyage to Fredrikstad.

Here’s how they have been getting on.

Day 7: Hagelsaag and Slagroom

Today was the day of our crew party but more on that later. First of all we had to restock Leader. Being the only person on board who had lived in the Netherlands I volunteered to assist Anne. After an hour, and three trolley loads, we had all the fresh food we needed for the race to Norway, as well as some biscuit paste and hagelslaag (ice-cream sprinkles) and plenty of slagroom (cream)!

Just before the party started the skies decided to dampen our spirits but after repurposing a sail into a makeshift gazebo we ready to go!  Twister, punch and homemade nachos were enjoyed by the crew and a few hundred of our new international friends. Some tasty Devon cider was provided by our skipper for the adults. A very successful party!

David, Ice Watch

Day 8: Leading the Parade

The last few days in port before any significant voyage are always full of check lists, shopping and excitement about the passage ahead. Today was no exception. Anne supported Colin and Katie making some general and final checks, which the crew of trainees carried out some accommodation checks.

We had lunch on deck, in the sunshine, tidied-up a few bits and pieces and spent the last few hours on shore to spread our legs.

I was proud that we were leading our class out to sea as the first vessel in the parade, surrounded by cheering and applauding as we headed on our way to Fredrikstad.

Ben, Skipper

Tall Ships Races 2014

Sea Picnic 2014 success Posted on

Sun shines on Sea Picnic as over £10k is raised for Trinity

Over two hundred people joined Trinity Sailing for the Sea Picnic on Saturday 7th June at Anstey’s Cove in Torquay. Despite the threat of thunderstorms, the ‘weather gods’ shined again and our guests enjoyed a delicious three course seafood lunch by the water’s edge with jazz provided by the Dart Valley Stompers and sea shanties from the Exmouth Shantymen.

The afternoon included an auction of maritime art and a range of excellent opportunities, expertly overseen by auctioneer Chris Hampton, which helped bring the total raised from the day to over £10,000, which is a fantastic achievement. Later on, the famous “Trinity sea & air spectacular” took place in the Cove which saw Bond villain Goldfinger and accomplice Oddjob capture the Trinity trawlers before 007 was flown in be helicopter, with support from a para-motor, to see off the attack, rescue the crew of the tralers and head-off into the distance with Pussy Galore…

The planning and running of the Sea Picnics (now at number 5) are reliant on so many people and organisations to ‘make it happen’ –  from our generous sponsors to our suppliers, helpers and key supporters such as our Vice-President Maj. Rayner – our grateful thanks from everyone at Trinity for making this event such a resounding success.

Sea Picnic 2014 - Anstey's Cove

Tall Ships Challenge – Fun and Games in Harlingen Posted on

Leader’s Tall Ships Challenge Team have arrived in Harlingen to begin the main part of their adventure and mingle with people from across the globe.

Here’s how they have been getting on.

Day 5: Arrival at the first host port.

Today we arrived in Harlingen! Sailing in to the dock with Martin singing created quite a sight, with everyone stopping and watching us arrive in to port.

As we were coming in to the dock we cleaned and polished the boat so it looked nice. Looking at all the other boats was definitely a sight. The huge square riggers were extremely impressive.

Our Dutch word of the day is Scheepswinkel (chandlery).

Alice, Bay Watch.

Day 6: Soaking up the atmosphere of the Tall Ships Races

The morning of July 4th started particularly slowly in the aftermath of last night’s party. We sat on deck and basked in the early morning sunshine. Many of the crew nursed sore heads and stomachs with some toast and fruit juice. We then made our way down to the internship sports events. I managed to have a go at volleyball which was really good fun.

After lunch mainly consisted of preparing for the 3pm crew parade. We all painted our faces and headed down to the harbourside. We joined a procession that was alive  with colour and full of pageantry from all over the world.

After the crew dinner I went to the habourside to listen to the Pink Floyd tribute band and bask in the atmosphere.

Tom, Cool Watch

BREAKING NEWS: Leader has picked up one of the first prizes at the 2014 Tall Ships Races after being named the Oldest Vessel in the Fleet!

You can now track Leader’s progress at the Tall Ships Races, via Sail Training International’s official site.


Leader crew playing Volleyball

Tall Ships Challenge Sails On Posted on

The Tall Ships Challenge team have been settling in well to their life on Leader.

Here is a report from their last few days together.

Day 3:  Hoisting sales and sea shanties

“Today we sailed up the coast from Ijmuiden to Den Helder. The weather was really nice, apart from insufficient wind, and the sailing was really relaxed after the initial hoisting of sails.

“The Dutch coastline consists of sand dunes and the occasional wind turbine, but we did see a very cool low-flying fighter jet. My favourite bits of the day included helming, learning about navigation, eating cake, and singing sea shanties.”

Jo, Cool Watch

Day 4: Good spirits all round

“Today we set sail a little earlier and had breakfast on the go, which was nice. As usual a few of us felt a little seasick, but this soon passed.

“The weather has been fantastically good and everyone really seems to be entering in to the spirit of things.”

Rowan, Bay Watch

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