18th December

Mismanagement behind marina development setback

A controversy has erupted over an EU Interreg harbour project in Donegal after marine consultant and pilot-book editor Norman Kean asked some pointed questions at a conference in September.

It made front-page headlines in the local press. “Donegal County Council, as the lead partner in the €7m Sail West/ Malin Waters programme, was allocated €1.6m – the biggest single share of the capital budget – for construction of a ‘marina’ at Bunagee in Inishowen.Bunagee pier

Bunagee pier. Was a €1.6m marina at this rocky and exposed place ever feasible or justifiable? Photo Geraldine Hennigan

“The other eight capital projects under the programme, in Northern Ireland and Scotland, including marinas, facilities buildings and a world-championship-standard slipway, were completed on time and on budget; however the Bunagee project has not started and it is very likely that the money will be forfeited,” he told Inshore Ireland.

“This is now, unfortunately, water under the bridge. But we need to make sure that future decisions are made in a well-informed, objective and transparent manner, and that this mismanagement is not repeated,” he said.

All at sea

 Tom Lawlor

At the age of 56, Bill Tilman took up sailing to the Arctic and Antartic searching for new mountains to climb. Trying to manage the dreded mal de mer as I watched the Atlantic climb the rock faces on Cork’s west coast, I felt it was time for me to give up sailing and take up mountaineering...

Leaving Courtmacsherry the crew face into heavy weather, bound for Dingle. Photo Paul Calvert

Leaving Courtmacsherry we face into heavy weather, bound for Dingle. Photo Paul Calvert

We had set sail from Monkstown, Co Cork. Our plan was to spend many idle hours cruising west with no particular destination in mind, just to enjoy visiting the many harbours sprinkled along the southwest coast.

Passing Cobh, Spike and Crosshaven we meet some boats arriving into the shelter of Cork harbour. Their crews looking tired and their rigging a little tattered.

Read more: All at sea

The Gathering Cruise

Gathering Cruise yachts at Courtmacsherry. Photo Geraldine Hennigan

Gathering Cruise yachts at Courtmacsherry. Photo Geraldine Hennigan

Norman Kean

Under cloudless skies on 17 July, two dozen boats from Ireland and England gathered in Dun Laoghaire to begin The Gathering Cruise. They were joined by another dozen, including the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group’s Celtic Mist and the Dutch sail training brig Astrid, as they made their way south and west. For many, it was a first visit to Ireland, and for others, a chance to bring home friends and family for a cruise together.

The fleet enjoyed the new facilities and the warm welcome at Dunmore East, and an excellent barbecue at Oysterhaven. The mood at the reception in Kinsale was overwhelmingly one of celebration at the safe rescue of the crew of Astrid, tinged by sadness at the loss of a fine old ship.

It was in Kinsale that the cruise’s founder Gail MacAllister, Cruising Officer of the ISA, demonstrated her genius for team-building by awarding every boat an individual prize for being best in the fleet at something.

Read more: The Gathering Cruise

The Log of the Molly B

Cian Gallagher

reviews Molly B

One of the great challenges of the keen sailor is to keep an updated log of all voyages and crossings, and especially of all lessons learned. Pete Hogan goes much further in his own log-keeping practices by literally painting the picture of locations visited, activities undertaken, and reasons for going where he went.

How many sailors can boast that level of dedication to their craft?!

At the very outset of his biographical adventure work, The Log of the Molly B, Hogan introduces the reader to what he had wanted to do for a very long time as a young man filled with a strong interest in boats.

Read more: The Log of the Molly B

A spectacle of sail expected for the ‘Gathering Cruise’

Described as a ‘unique event’, the Irish Sailing Association and Gathering Ireland 2013 are organising a cruise involving 100 boats and 600-strong crew that will sail in company down the east and south coasts of Ireland. The flotilla will be joined en route by boats from feeder ports in the UK, Europe and America. 
9.1Coastline news gathercruise

Arriving at gateway ports, boats will be greeted by Gathering Welcome Ambassadors and local communities. They will then join the flotilla that left Dublin on July 13 as it sails southwards to assemble in Kinsale, Co Cork, before heading westward along the West Cork and Kerry coastline for a major farewell gathering in Dingle on August 1.

Read more: A spectacle of sail expected for the ‘Gathering Cruise’

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