SWAN Wins National Award

Tall Ships 2011 entrant SWAN, Shetland’s restored herring drifter, has been awarded the National Historic Ships, Flagship Award 2011 which carries a prize of £1000.  In reaching their decision the adjudicating panel was impressed by the SWAN’s ‘extensive sailing  and visiting programme for 2011 and were ‘particularly impressed with the emphasis on engagement with young people.

The SWAN, built in Lerwick, Shetland in 1900 operated as a sailing drifter for 35 years before its first engine was installed.  Sold to the north east of England in 1960, SWAN was found submerged in Hartlepool Docks in 1980.  In 1991 the boat was purchased by The SWAN Trust and brought back to Shetland in 1991 to be restored as a sail training vessel.  A frequent entrant in Tall Ships Races, the SWAN will be participating in all legs of this year’s race series from the start in Waterford, Ireland to the final port of Halmstad, Sweden, including a stop-over at her home port of Lerwick, Shetland.

To win the Flagship Award 2011, SWAN faced stiff competition from a wide range of historic vessels, including the restored Humber sloop, Spider T; the former Port of London Authority survey vessel, Havengore and the Clyde paddle steamer, Waverley.

Chairman of The Swan Trust, Allister Rendall said,  “We are delighted that the Swan has won such a prestigious award.  It is particularly appropriate in the year when the Tall Ships visits Shetland for the Swan to be selected.  As the flagship for 2011 of the UK’s National Historic Ships Fleet, the Swan will be seen by approximately 2 million people in Britain and Europe and be ideally placed to promote the work of National Historic Ships”.