Learn to sail a Thames Sailing Barge for free – 2019

Are you ready for the adventure of a lifetime?

(Please note the Thames Barge Sailing Training Scheme is now closed to new applicants for 2019. We have had a great response again this year. Shortlisted applicants will be notified before the end of February. Thank you to all those who have applied)

The Thames Sailing Barge Trust, a registered charity, is seeking passionate, highly-motivated individuals who want to become mate or skipper of a traditional Thames Sailing Barge.

No previous sailing experience required

Following the success of the first three years of our sail training scheme, the Trust are looking to recruit a further ten trainees to help secure the future of the Thames Sailing Barge fleet.

This is possibly the most comprehensive, free sail training opportunity in the world.

We will guide you through over 700 enabling objectives, which will help you reach the required standard to qualify as a sailing bargemaster. These include full knowledge of all barge sailing, navigation and maintenance tasks.

It usually takes around 10 years to become a fully qualified sailing barge skipper. So this is a serious commitment that will require you to dedicate at least one weekend a month to the scheme, for at least the next decade.

This is a fantastic opportunity to get afloat and discover a lifetime of adventure under sail.

What we are offering:

    • Around 20 sailing days free of charge per year
    • A personal development plan, customised to your availability and previous sailing experience, if any
    • A personal mentor to assist in your development
    • Access to over 20 Thames Sailing Barges in Essex, Kent, Suffolk, London and beyond
    • Training in a complete range of traditional seafaring skills, including rope-work, gear and rigging, sail setting and trim, rules of the road, navigation, meteorology, small boat work, maintenance and leadership skills 

In volunteering, you will not only be helping to preserve Thames Sailing Barges themselves but also the skills and knowledge required to sail and maintain them. Hopefully you will in turn be able to pass these skills on to future generations.

You will get the chance to meet lots of interesting people from different backgrounds along the way as you enjoy the wonders of Thames Barge sailing.

You will need to be:

    • Passionate about learning how to sail a Thames Sailing Barge
    • Not afraid of heights
    • Reliable and flexible (hours depend on tide and weather etc)
    • Reasonably fit and strong
    • Sociable, with good communication skills
    • Willing to learn and apply yourself

Find Out More:

If you’re interested in finding out more, send an email to training@bargetrust.org with your name, contact details and a few words explaining why you would like to be considered for this opportunity.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Donations Welcome:

The Thames Sailing Barge Trust are currently raising funds for the refurbishment of Thames Sailing Barge, Pudge. If you would like to help us by making a donation, you can do so here: Pudge Appeal

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