Sixteen young adults from throughout Shetland are all set to experience life at sea for an exciting adventure as they join the tall ships Swan, Europa and Alexander von Humboldt II as sail trainees.
Ten trainees left Lerwick onboard the Swan on Sunday to sail across the North Sea to join other traditional sailing vessels from Scandinavia taking part in “Nordic Sail”, with the Swan being the only visiting boat.
Forming in Hals, Denmark, the 29-strong fleet will race to Uddevalla, Sweden, with the event ending with a second race to Risør, Norway, before the Swan heads back to Shetland, returning on 9th July.
The trainees on the Swan are Vaila Henderson, 15, Robbie Jamieson, 15, Lauren Johnson, 16, Ryan Leask, 16, Thomas Meadows, 18, Callum Mustard, 18, Ailish Parham, 16, Michaela Peterson, 15, Ellie Simpson, 15, and Erin Simpson, 17.
Nordic Sail is renowned for its friendly atmosphere and is organised by the Sail Training associations of Norway, Sweden and Denmark. Over 400 crew will be taking part in the event between 28th June and 7th July 2012, with activities organised in each port for the visiting crews, similar to a Tall Ships event.
The other six trainees are due to take part in the the Tall Ships Races, presented by Szczecin and organised by Sail Training International.
Jack Jamieson, 20, Daniel Lawson, 19, and Scott Sandison, 18, will be setting sail on the Europa from the Netherlands as part of a European Youth-in-Action programme on the race between St Malo and Lisbon from 7th to 21st July.
Kristen Jeromson, 21, Michelle Robertson, 23, and Emma Rochester, 18, will be joining the newly built Class A German tall ship Alexander von Humboldt II on the leg between Lisbon and Cadiz before returning to Lisbon as part of the Cruise-in-Company from 21st July to 2nd August.
All of the Shetland trainees will work closely with the crew of their allocated ships, undertaking tasks such as watch-keeping, setting sails and other domestic duties which they will share with other trainees.
Sail Training Shetland chairman Peter Campbell said: “This year will see the total number of young people participating in our annual sail training schemes reaching eighty since the charity’s formation in 2009.
“We are delighted that we have again been able to recruit a spirited group of young people from around Shetland. I am confident that all of our trainees will take away something positive from their experiences and will be great ambassadors for our community.
“We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all our grant funders, sponsors and supporters for their generous and valued support.”