Gipsy Moth IV relaunched

Sir Francis Chichester's old boat to allow young people to experience the sea

Sunday June 19th 2005, Author: Paul Gelder, Location: Transoceanic
Today the United Kingdom Sailing Academy (UKSA) re-launched Sir Francis Chichester’s famous vessel Gipsy Moth IV at Camper and Nicholsons, the boatyard where she was originally built in 1966.

The day marks a new era for the yacht, which until 17 November 2004 had been in a concrete dry dock in Greenwich. Thanks to a campaign by Yachting Monthly Editor, Paul Gelder, the UKSA came to the stricken vessel’s rescue and purchased the legendary yacht for ‘£1 and a gin and tonic’ from The Maritime Trust.

After an extensive restoration, Gipsy Moth IV will now be put to use taking young people to sea, providing them with the opportunity to experience the same challenge and adventure that Chichester experienced during his famous record breaking solo circumnavigation in 1966-67.

The yacht will now embark on a global tour, this exciting circumnavigation will be crewed by young people who have faced challenges throughout their lives and may benefit from the once in a lifetime experience, which aims to develop their skills, resourcefulness and determination.

Thanks to the commitment and support of the Project’s Partners, Gipsy Moth IV will be ready to depart Plymouth on the 25th September 2005. The marine industry has been captured the ‘Chichester Spirit’, the level of support has enabled UKSA to complete the first stage of the project. The project’s Main Partner, the Isle of Wight has generously donated funds to complete the refit and have also provided a mobile exhibition unit which will act as a shore base for the project at shows and events around the UK.

In a contrast to Chichester’s fortnightly radio reports, today’s followers of the voyage will be able to track the vessel’s progress via the web. There are plans for ‘Gipsy Moth TV’, an Internet Protocol Television channel, which will broadcast daily feeds from the yacht into classrooms, offices and homes. With the global communications technology available today, the voyage will provide young people with a ‘Window on the World’ allowing them see and interact with cultures around the globe.

Environmental projects are also planned in association with the University of Plymouth, it is hoped that the unification of youth around the world will highlight environmental issues and give voice to the feelings of the next generation. Education packs linked with the National Curriculum will be available to all schools, allowing children in the classroom to become fully immersed in the project which spans many areas of the curriculum.

The project is now in its second stage, funds are needed to realise the dreams of young people participating in the Gipsy Moth IV voyage selection scheme. Donations can be made via or 01983 203017.

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