WPNSA hosts Round Britain and Ireland Challenge official boat blessing

The Round Britain and Ireland Challenge Fleet will receive a Boat Blessing - Round Britain and Ireland Challenge
© WPNSA
Round Britain and Ireland Challenge.

The Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy (WPNSA) hosted the Bishop of Sherborne yesterday for the official boat blessing of the Round Britain and Ireland Challenge Dehler Varianta 44 Fleet.


The Academy has formed a partnership with this brand new yacht race which provides opportunities for people to race around Great Britain and Ireland or join for a single leg. The race will run three times a year, starting and finishing at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, which will also be the base for training.

The Round Britain and Ireland Challenge fleet has brought a significant big boat racing element to the Academy’s grounds as they prepare for the first of the 2011 race starts on March 27 at Weymouth and Portland. There will then be two subsequent races during the summer and early autumn all starting and finishing from the WPNSA.

The ‘blessing of the fleet’ conducted by the Bishop of Sherborne, dressed in beautiful robes, officially welcomed the racing fleet to the 2012 sailing venue as well as evoking traditional sea faring ceremonies when blessings asked for safety to mariners, good harvests from the sea, clean waters and good will and peace amongst people of the world.

left to right John Tweed, Chief Executive of the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, The Bishop of Sherborne and Charlie Walker, Managing Director of the Round Britain and Ireland Challenge with his children
Helen Ellis

The blessing was followed by Charlie Walker’s children pouring champagne onto one of the boats within the fleet.
Charlie Walker, Managing Director, Round Britain and Ireland Challenge, is now preparing for the start of race one at the end of March, ‘we are now in full preparation at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy for the start of race one. The boat blessing was a time to reflect on all of the team’s hard work in setting up such a popular event that will see three 2,500 mile circumnavigations during 2011 alone’.

Round Britain and Ireland Challenge website

left to right John Tweed, Chief Executive of the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, The Bishop of Sherborne and Charlie Walker, Managing Director of the Round Britain and Ireland Challenge
Helen Ellis

left to right John Tweed, Chief Executive of the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, The Bishop of Sherborne and Charlie Walker, Managing Director of the Round Britain and Ireland Challenge
Helen Ellis