Liverpool 18th - 20th July 2008
Finally the time is nearly upon us when voyage LN 700 - the all girls team for the Tall Ships Race 2008 - come together to sail from Liverpool to Malloy. Forty girl guides and their leaders, having gone through a national selection process, have arrived on the Lord Nelson to undertake the first leg of the race. Of course it wasn't ever going to be a quiet affair. The day before the girls joined the ship, HRH Prince Andrew attended a reception on board Lord Nelson where he had the opportunity to meet some of the other ships Captains, alongside our own Captain Clare Cupples, JST Chairman Tom Stewart and CEO Amanda Butcher. The Tall Ships weekend here in Liverpool has attracted a lot of attention and innumerable visitors, reporters, journalists (and some Mum's and Dad's!) have been around to hear about the ships and to learn of our unique voyage - the first all female crew, (including the permanent crew), and the unique opportunity the Lord Nelson provides in enabling people of all abilities to sail together.
Before joining the ship, the Girl Guides all turned out in their new pink JST/Girl Guide shirts to represent the Lord Nelson in the crew parade - what a sight! In a sea of pink they could hardly be missed and many photo opportunities were taken up. Then they arrived on board the ship, to find their bunks and meet the rest of the crew and learn about some of the safety aspects for the night ahead, before heading off to the crew party.
The ship opened again on Sunday to members of the public who the Guides helped to show round, whilst others unpacked and helped get the ship ready.
The afternoon saw the official voyage welcome and introductions to the permanent crew with safety briefings and drills taking place too. Then Captain Clare briefed the new crew on the plans for the coming voyage not least of all, being that the next day was to start with us having the ship ready to be off the berth by 0600hrs, meaning an early call at 0500hrs!
Update By: Rachel MP LN