A further four beautiful sailing ships have registered for The Tall Ships Races Sunderland 2018.

Class A Topsail Schooner Oosterschelde, Class A Barquentine Loa, Class A Gaff Schooner Gulden Leeuw and Class B Topsail Schooner Skonnerten Jylland have recently committed to coming to Sunderland next year.

The Oosterschelde is a three-masted schooner from the Netherlands.  Built in 1918, she is one of the oldest and most authentic vessels of the international fleet, taking 24 Sail Trainees on a voyage. Her home port is the bustling city of Rotterdam and she is the largest restored Dutch freight ship with a colourful, yet not so glamorous, past transporting mainly clay, stone and wood, but also herring, bran, potatoes, straw and bananas! In a typically Dutch casual atmosphere, Sail Trainees will learn all there is to know about sailing and navigation. It can be a tough job because the Oosterschelde does not use any winches to hoist the sails, but after the work is done there's lots of time to relax, enjoy good food, music and each other’s company in the spacious salon.

LOA is Denmark’s only remaining three-masted barquentine and the smallest Tall Ship of their fleet, taking 23 Sail Trainees at a time on life-changing voyages across the Northern Europe and Baltic region.  She is a regular participant in the Races sailing with members of LOA Sailing Team. The Danish Ship Preservation Trust has characterised her as a vessel worthy of preservation due to her importance to Danish maritime culture.

Also from the Netherlands and originally built in 1937, then completely redesigned and rebuilt in 2010, the Gulden Leeuw is one of the world's largest three-mast-topsail schooners taking 60 Sail Trainees. The ship was built with the function of sail training in mind and offers the ambiance of a classic sailing ship with modern amenities and safety systems. 70 metres long with 40 metre masts, the ship has a large deck space, a climate-controlled dormitory and a modern galley with a large dining area. As soon as you step on board you are one of the team enjoying the team spirit and open atmosphere.

The final of the latest Tall Ships to confirm attendance is Dutch schooner Skonnerten Jylland.  The ship has a strong history of Sail Training and working with young people, accommodating 18 Sail Trainees per voyage. The Crew are passionate about helping those with a lack of skills and, not least, with the courage to get education and go into adulthood, with a stronger sense of being able to meet what they see as the increasing demands of society. The ship participates in several international races, helping to give young people aboard a life-time experience of teamwork and unity, as well as enhance the individual’s self-esteem.

Find out more about opportunities to get on-board one of these magestic Giants of the Sea as a Sail Trainee or if you would like to help to fund a voyage. Sunderland Sail Trainee Bursary Scheme is open for applications until midnight on Sunday 12th November 2017.

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