Double honour for sail trainee

Award winner Ailish Parham with Aubrey Jamieson (left) and Peter Campbell. Photo: Dave Donaldson
Award winner Ailish Parham with Aubrey Jamieson (left) and Peter Campbell. Photo: Dave Donaldson

The Swan Trust’s end of season get together in the Lerwick Boating Club on Saturday was a double celebration for teenager Ailish Parham from Maywick.

She collected the Vevoe Trophy awarded annually to the best trainee and then was delighted to be presented with an international award for the young sail training volunteer of the year.

Presenting the Vevoe Trophy for the best trainee on the Swan during 2013, Aubrey Jamieson spoke of Ailish’s enthusiasm for sail training and how she had spent almost the whole summer as a volunteer crew member on the vessel.

He also explained about the Vevoe Trophy. A replica of Swan’s original wheel, it had been commissioned following a donation from the family of the late Willie Simpson, Vevoe, Whalsay. He had been a trustee of the Swan Trust and his family had been associated with the vessel for more than 50 years.

Willie o’Vevoe, as he was known, had first gone to the herring fishing in the early 1950s aboard the Swan. In addition to receiving the Vevoe Trophy which is awarded annually, Ailish was presented with a cold bronze casting of the Swan under sail, made by Terry Atkinson, Tingwall.

Ailish’s second trophy of the evening was Sail Training International (STI)’s award to the young sail training volunteer of the year. Making the presentation, Peter Campbell, who had accepted the trophy on behalf of Ailish at the Tall Ships Conference in Aalborg, Denmark, the previous week, referred to the criteria of skills, talent, time and dedication which the international panel of judges had used to determine the winner.

He then quoted Paul Bishop, race director of STI ,who had announced the winner. “This trophy is awarded to somebody whose defining moment in sail training was a stormy night crossing the North Sea. She rose to the challenge and impressed all aboard. Her experience encouraged her to become a very active volunteer and it soon became apparent to the skipper and trustees that she was an exceptional young person with maturity beyond her years.”

After accepting her trophies Ailish spoke of her amazement at winning.

She said: “I couldn’t quite believe it. I considered winning the Vevoe Trophy to be an achievement, but to win this international award is overwhelming.

“I must thank Sail Training Shetland for the opportunity to sail on Swan in 2012 and the Swan Trust for the support I was given over the summer.”

Both the trophies will soon be on display in the Swan Trust’s display case at NAFC, Scalloway.


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