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Latest News 17 August 2018

Wounded veterans crew adapted tall ship to Jersey

A group of injured veterans and their family members are set to sail the English Channel in a fully adapted tall ship, thanks to Blesma, The Limbless Veterans and the Jubilee Sailing Trust.

On Saturday 18 August, 18 Blesma Members along with their family members, carers and JST staff will board SV Tenacious, which is specially designed to be accessible for all abilities throughout, to travel on a week-long voyage, as part of Blesma’s WW1 centenary commemorations.

The crew, which includes veterans with a range of disabilities consisting of single amputees, double amputees, loss of use of limbs (paralysis) and loss of eye sight, will set sail from Southampton Docks and cross the English Channel to Jersey in the Channel Islands before their return on Saturday 25 August. During their time on board, everyone will be expected to get stuck in and immerse themselves in ship life, taking part in watches and contributing to the daily working routine on board. Members will be tasked with setting the sails, going aloft, helming the ship and manning the watch keeping system.

During the voyage, the crew will also be making a stop in Jersey (Monday 20 August), where in honour of the ambitious endeavor, the Lieutenant-Governor of Jersey will be hosting the crew for an evening at the Government House.

His Excellency Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Dalton, GCB, Lieutenant-Governor of Jersey, said: “Jersey believes very strongly in supporting the British Armed Forces and always welcomes visiting units and personnel.  We are very conscious that military duty demands commitment and sacrifice and that some military personnel suffer as a consequence of their service. That is why we, here in Jersey, look forward to hosting members of Blesma as they take part in this Jubilee Sailing Trust voyage and do our best to say thank you for that service.”

This sail is going to be challenging for the Blesma crew, but it offers the opportunity for these injured veterans to have an adventure with their families; something they have not done since injury, the positive impact will be greatly significant.

Barry Le Grys, Blesma Chief Executive

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Isle of Wight
I participated in the voyage and wish to thank Blesma for its faultless organisation in arranging a most enjoyable experience. The ship's Captain, his permanent crew and volunteer Watch Leaders displayed immense patience with us the Passage Crew and I'm sure all of us enjoyed the experience as much as I did, Well done Blesma staff and the Jubilee Sailing Trust

sal harris

I also was fortunate to be given this opputunity to sail as a member of the working crew with BLESMA and the Jubilee Sailing Trust.It was short notice but a once in a life time experience and not knowing anyone onboard except Steve Fraser South West BLESMA Support Officer I left with much more self confidence and some wonderful friends and aquaintances.Thank you BLESMA,Jubilee Sailing Trust,Richard our ever patient Captain and the permanent staff and volunteers with the Trust who gave us a rich and fun filled week,and to the fabulous members of BLESMA from whom I learnt so much ….

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