National Maritime Museum Cornwall small boat register goes online

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St Agnes lighthouse, Scilly Isles – see
the news about Troze below

The National Maritime Museum Cornwall’s small boats register has gone online – and we’re all invited to let its organisers know of any craft that should be included. I should think there are hundreds!

Here’s the NMMC’s release on this important project:

‘Over the past few years, National Maritime Museum Cornwall has been working on a database of boats which deserve heritage protection. With the help of other museums, owners and charitable trusts, the Museum has been assembling a list of over 1200 boats.

‘Now part of this database known as the National Small Boat Register including boats under 40ft in length, is available on the web and everyone is invited to help make it the definitive list for the UK.

‘The list is modelled on the database used for ships – the National Register of Historic Vessels – but uses a new ‘history pod’ to identify key dates in a craft’s history.

Jonathan Griffin, director of the Maritime Museum says: “There is still much work to do. We need to obtain owners’ permission to publicise details of some of the boats we already hold on the database. We’d welcome hearing from everyone about other boats which they feel should be included in the Register.”

‘Looking ahead, the Museum is keen to develop a discussion forum to make the whole register inclusive and a place where enthusiasts can exchange information about the boats.

‘Have a look at the research area of the Museum’s website at and see if your boat or a boat you know of should be registered.’

Also new from the NMMC has also launched an interesting-looking quarterly online journal called Troze. The first issue concerns wrecking on the Isles of Scilly.

Museum’s staff sayTroze will welcome article submissions from enthusiastic researchers, writers or people who are knowledgeable or passionate about their topics.

If you’re wondering, as I was, the title of the journal is taken from the Cornish word for the sound made by water about the bows of a boat in motion.

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Some ancient photos of famous old boats

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Tilikum at Margate, with Captain John Voss
standing at the bows. As usual click on the
images for much larger photographs

Fishing luggers sailing out of Mevagissey,

Falmouth quay punt

Lowestoft trawlers in a shot that looks more like a
painting than a photo

West Mersea smacks looking very handsome on a near run

I picked up a dusty old book the other day, and found it contained many photos of some well known old boats. Here are just a few. I must say I was particularly pleased to find the Tilikum shot, as it gives a clear impression of what the boat was like when Captain John Voss had her and sailed such enormous distances. Voss’s book The Venturesome Voyages of Captain Voss is a jolly read, as you’d expect from someone who became a professional adventurer – there are some copies at ABE Books. There’s a bit more on Voss’s voyage here, and thanks to the kind folks at the splendid Duckworks forum, I’ve just learned that Venturesome Voyages is also available online.

On other topics, there are various posts on luggers to read and others on Falmouth quay punts, and on fishing generally.

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Tall ships exhibition at the National Maritime Museum Cornwall

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Tall ships exhibition at the National Maritime Museum Cornwall

Tall ships exhibition at the National Maritime Museum Cornwall

Tall ships exhibition at the National Maritime Museum Cornwall

Outstanding photographs by MAX on show at the
National Maritime Museum Cornwall exhibition.
Click on each one for a much larger image – you won’t
regret it!

The National Maritime Museum Cornwall is putting on an outstanding tall ships exhibition starting on the 1st July.

Part of the celebration surrounding the Funchal 500 Tall Ships regatta arrival in Falmouth in September, the Tall Ships photographic exhibition features images of the vessels, and will include the work of the renowned tall ship photographer, MAX.

The following notes come from the NMMC’s release:

‘The exhibition also explores the background of The Tall Ships’ Races and their role in fostering greater understanding between young people from all over the world. The first ever Tall Ships’ Race took place in 1956 with just 20 ships while now the event often boasts over 100, with thousands of crew members from as many as 50 different countries.

‘Sail Training International, organisers of The Tall Ships’ Races, were even nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 for their activities promoting international friendship and understanding through sail training for young people.

‘Milly Newman, Exhibitions Development Assistant says: “Everyone at the Maritime Museum is incredibly excited about the Funchal 500 Tall Ships Regatta. For those that were here for the hugely successful ’98 Tall Ships event these breathtaking prints will serve as a reminder of the incredibly powerful scene these ships paint when under sail together. For those that missed one of Cornwall’s major highlights of the last 10 years this anniversary exhibition will whet their appetites for a truly spectacular experience yet to come.”

‘The Tall Ships photographic exhibition opens on 1 July and runs until 26 September.”