The Northumberland Navy of sail trainees has returned home following an epic journey for the race leg of the North Sea Tall Ships Regatta Blyth 2016.
Organisers put out a call in March for would-be sailors to take part in the international event as a sail trainee on a Tall Ship, and 80 people, aged 15-63, were recruited.
The trainees joined their vessels at Blyth during the Regatta weekend – from August 26 to 29 – before setting sail to Gothenburg, Sweden, following the spectacular Parade of Sail to St Mary’s Island on the Bank Holiday Monday.
Many of the trainees are Northumberland residents and 33 received funding from Northumberland County Council ward councillors.
A number of the other participants were supported by event sponsors including DFDS and IHC Engineering Business Limited. The event’s principal sponsor, Fergusons of Blyth, sponsored 14 trainees and the Northumberland Youth Service and Northumberland Sport sponsored 22.
Among them was Kim Henderson, from Amble. She is a wheelchair user and sailed on the Lord Nelson, one of only two Tall Ships in the world designed and operated to be sailed by all physical abilities.
She said: “I was able to take part in everything. I’ve been up the mast myself, pulled myself up in a sling, been up on the bowsprit – there’s nothing that I haven’t taken part in.
“It has been a wonderful experience.”