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September 28, 2010

David Horton, Jubilee Sailing Trust, 28th September 2010

David Horton, Jubilee Sailing Trust, 28th September 2010
David Horton spoke to the group about the Jubilee Sailing Trust, a charity that was established in 1978 and that has two tall ships on which physically disabled people are able to work alongside able bodied people. 36,000 people have sailed with the Trust, and ages have ranged from 16 to 85.

The two ships, the Lord Nelson and the Tenacious, are the only two ships of their kind in the world: they are fitted with wheelchair lifts, a hearing loop and a speaking compass to enable blind and visually impaired crew to take the helm. Lord Nelson is 25 years old and has just had a refit, Tenacious is 10 years old.

Each ship has a permanent, professional crew, and the total voyage crew is 38 – 40. There are up to 8 wheelchair users on each voyage. A buddy systems operates on board: each disabled person is partnered with an able-bodied person, people of all physical abilities are integrated, and no one is left out.

We were told some great stories about recent voyages that David had been on, where he had seen people of all abilities gaining new experiences and learning new skills. David will be sailing again in February 2011 and he told us that next year the British Disabled Rugby Team will also be on one of the ships as will 7 soldiers, all under 25 years, who have been injured in battle.

Michael Saunders presented David with a donation for the Jubilee Sailing Trust from the Oxford Spires group.

Read more about the Jubilee Sailing Trust