The citation reads, ‘Steel-hulled Thames sailing barge Blue Mermaid is the first of her type to be built for 90 years. This one is a replica of the eponymous original, built by Mistley Shipping Company in 1930 and lost in the war.
She was commissioned b the Sea-Change Sailing Trust, which is using her for sail-training and cargo duties – all without an engine – and to improve the lives of the young and vulnerable who sail upon her.
These range from age 7 to typical dementia age, according to Sea-Change’s Richard Titchener.
To quote Patron Tom Cunliffe, ‘The cost in money is minimal by today’s standards. The pay-off in turning lives around will be incalculable.’
As of today Sea-Change will cancel all charters until further notice.
We will continue to fit out the barge and will resume operations as soon as possible, and hope this will enable us to reschedule.
Deposits will be repaid where requested.
This decision has not been taken lightly but in the interests of everyone’s safety there is no other choice.
We wish you all the best during this difficult time and hope to see you all again as soon as is possible.
Hilary Halajko, Chair of Trustees
Staff from Clacton based Inclusion Ventures travelled to Maldon today to visit Blue Mermaid, which is currently in dry dock prior to getting underway for the new season.
Regular clients, Inclusion Venture‘s aim is to improve the lives of vulnerable young people from the most disadvantaged areas of Jaywick & West Clacton; supporting them to discover a wider prospective, and positive future that fulfils their potential. They are doing a great job.