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Tall Ships in Whitehaven

The Pelican tall ship is to be a permanent harbourside attraction (2018). It will also offer opportunities for people to develop their personal skills, confidence, and get ready for work or training, as part of a programme managed by charity, Adventure Under Sail.
In 2015 t he Tall Ships Youth Trust operasted the Tenacity of Bolton out of the North West with Whitehaven as her base. This opens up wonderful cruising grounds around Scotland, the Isle of Man, Ireland and North Wales as well as making sail training with the Trust more accessible to young people and groups in the area. More details..

Since the summer of 2000 tall ships have paid visits to Whitehaven...especially for the regular Maritime Festivals.
Among visitors has been National Trust sponsored Grand Turk(pictured below.), the reconstruction of an 18th Century frigate, which featured in the Hornblower TV series, as Hornblower's first flagship Indefatigable. Another regular vistors is the Kaskelot,(nearest the camera) a replica of a 19th Century three masted barque, one of the last proper square riggers to be built, and was originally used by the Royal Greenland Trading Company. As well as film and TV charter work including The Last Place on Earth, Longitude and The Return of the Three Musketeers, the ship is used extensively as a sail training vessel. The ship arrived at Whitehaven, berthing alongside the Grand Turk at the newly restored sugar tongue, on Thursday 22 June, 2000 and the public came aboard to explore the two decks. The ship left soon after an Independence Day fireworks show on 4 July. The celebrations attracted some 4,000 spectators and were masterminded by Gerard Richardson of Richardson Wines with help from Kier Northern and Whitehaven Development Company.

Before the days of SatNav Whitehaven seamen set out at the mercy of the winds and tides from Whitehaven...
Kaskalot (left) and Grand Turk tied up at Whitehaven
Grand turk at Whitehaven

About 140 tall ships were built in Whitehaven until 1840, and the Kaskalot was largest in the harbour in living memory. The Kaskelot (the name meaning sperm whale in Danish) was built for the Danish Government in 1948 as a trading and supply ship for the remote Greenland settlements. She also served as a hospital and surgery for the Eskimos, and finished her trading career as a fisheries support vessel in the Faroes until the late 1970's.

Kaskalot's Length 153 ft, beam 28 ft, draught 12 ft, main mast 105 ft, 17 sails, sail area 9500 sq ft, 375 hp engine, 15-18 crew. She was purchased by Square Sail in 1981, and immediately converted and re-rigged to feature as Captain Scott's 'Terra Nova' for the film The last Place on Earth. She has also had starring roles in The Three Muskateers, Amy Foster, and Return to Treasure Island. On TV she has recently featured in A Respectable Trade, Longitude and David Copperfield.

Sunk....another tall ship dream
Ellan Vannin with broken back on the Whitehaven shore
The two-masted Ellan Vannin arrived recently at Whitehaven amidst claims she would be repaired and provide sail training. On her arrival day the fire brigade had to pump her out as she started sinking. But on Sept 16 2004 she was left unattended in the outer harbour and snapped her moorings. Soon after the sad old lady drifted north before foundering and breaking her back.
For more of the maritime flavour of Whitehaven visit the town's Whitehaven Maritime Festival web site

Details of another famous Whitehaven ship

Four masted whitehaven ship the Sherwood

Typical of the impresive Whitehaven workhorses of the sea routes...The Sherwood a four master built 1883 built by the Whitehaven Shipbuilding Company. Picture at Maryport Museum.