Pebble Brook School
A specialist community school for young people aged 11 to 19 years.
We occasionally create our own song and dance performances.
Tall Ships Sailing Residential
On Monday 6th September 2021, myself and five students travelled by minibus with the Oasis youth worker and youth to Portsmouth. After we all took a covid test, which thankfully was negative for everyone, the Tall Ships crew took us through an orientation and split us into two separate teams or ‘watches’ so that tasks could be allocated to us on a daily basis. The students were all excited for the sailing to get underway. As we set sail for the Isle of Wight, we did not realise how fully, by the end of the week, we would be involved in manning the 72 foot, Challenger yacht.
We spent some time in Cowes before setting sail for Poole. The weather was fantastic, we had to make sure we wore our hats and used plenty of sunscreen. Each watch or team would take turns to cook and clean up after meals, alternately. Meanwhile, when up ‘on deck’ we were introduced to terms such as ‘port’, ‘starboard’, ‘flaking’ and also the yacht paraphernalia and associated tasks. One such task was ‘helming’ or steering the yacht, which the captain allowed everyone to do, students and staff alike.
Here is how one student described the third day (Wednesday);
“…We then set sailed to Weymouth where I went with my mum and step-father. We sailed across the sea and I liked sitting at the front. In Weymouth, we went to an arcade and I won a prize for a sweet. Then we went for a stroll and probably went pass the apartment we stayed at with my parents. For dinner we had fish and chips and chicken burgers.”
On Thursday we set off back to Portsmouth. The weather had changed so we had to put on the wet weather gear given to us by the crew. The sea was rougher than it had been on the previous days and so it was ‘all hands on deck’ as we worked together as a team to hoist the main and yankee sails, whilst the yacht pitched from side to side. The next day was our last day and we all worked together to clean the yacht. Everyone had passed their ‘Start Yachting: Practical Sailing Course’, so we all received certificates. It was time to go home. What an adventure!
We would like to give a big thank you to the Tall Ships crew and the Clare Foundation who made this fantastic opportunity possible. Here is what another student had to say;
“I had a good time on tall ships I went on this big boat for a week and I helped with all the stuff like putting the sail up, to move it away from ports and to move it into ports…My favourite part was when we went around Weymouth and I don’t have a bad part. If you ever have the chance to do this, then I say do it as it is a good experience”.
Guess the teacher
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