On To Barra

Barra lies 130 miles to the north of the Foyle Estuary, across the approaches to the North Channel and into the South Minch. These are unforgiving open waters exposed to the full fetch of the Atlantic rolling in from St Johns, Canada, 2800 nautical miles to the west. As such they demand the greatest of … Read more

Getting to the start line

A man in a grey lifejacket, blue jacket and purple hat is sitting on the deck of a boat which is sailing to windward

Trilleen is finally positioned on the North Irish coast, ready to cross her track from 2022 and begin the next leg of her Round Britain and Ireland sail. Up to this point this season has been all about getting to the start line. This is the point at which it all starts to get very real and I face some long testing passages ahead

Campbeltown to Lamlash: sailing at its best

The sail from Campbeltown to Lamlash was one of those, all too infrequent, rare and privileged days on the water. After what had been an uninspiring, cold and wet set of motor dominated passages from Oban to Campbeltown it was balm for my soul, and a rest for my ears. It’s days like this that … Read more

A new year at the Mull of Kintyre

Trilleen and I marked the arrival of New Years day during the shrouded darkness of a Scottish winter night rounding the Mull of Kintyre. The headland has an evil reputation for angry overfalling waves and eddies to often agitated by violent storms. This New Years morning though it was quiescent in the window between two … Read more

We have a mast: and are stuck in Oban…

Mountains illuminated in glowing purple by the rising dawn over a rippled blue sea in the foreground

Trilleen is on the move again. It’s a huge relief to be on the way again. The damage to Trilleen’s mast in the start of 2022 resulted severe delays to my attempt to sail round the UK and Ireland solo, raising funds for the Andrew Cassell Foundation, but I’m back on board and getting the … Read more

Waiting is part of sailing

Waiting is part of sailing. For weather, for tide through refit and during postponements of a race’s start. In all these I and every sailor, wait in eager expectation of the moment at which our vessel again cleaves the water, a growing wake behind her. These waits are mostly short, or at least have a … Read more

Boatyard disasters

Serious damage to jib foil after impact to Trilleen's rig

An incident during Trilleen’s recent launch has resulted in unrecoverable damage to her rig. This means I won’t be continuing my Round Britain and Ireland sail until she has a new mast in place. I’m still working through he full impact of the schedule changes and will keep you all up to date here and … Read more

Managing Incontinence at sea

Image is divided in two diagonally. The foreground is a wooden pontoon with a black trolley on it. The trolley is loaded with incontinence supplies. Behind is a boat moored alongside the pontoon.

As a disabled solo sailor circumnavigating the waters of the UK and Ireland, one of the challenges I’ve had to deal with is managing incontinence at sea. I have good news: it can be done, and done well, even on a tiny boat. My specific issues relate to a spinal injury, but I’ve learned that … Read more

Creating a more inclusive sailing community in the UK

Solo sailor Ian sits on the deck of his boat Trilleen. he is wearing large splints on his legs. IN the foreground on a pontoon is his wheelchair and next to the wheelchair is John Twomey, president of Irish Sailing who is a paraplegic and is also using a wheelchair.

As a solo disabled sailor, I have had the opportunity to explore many different marinas and anchorages around the UK. While some of these places have been accessible and welcoming, others have presented challenges due to a lack of accessibility in their design and infrastructure. Accessibility is not just about creating equal opportunities for people … Read more