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Learn how to sail a traditional vessel at the Enkhuizen Nautical School

23 December 2014

Dutch based maritime academy now offers courses for non-Dutch speakers.

Hundreds of people have in recent years opted for a career sailing traditional vessels for a living. Many of the jobs available in this sphere were formerly filled by transfer from the Merchant Navy, but with increasing mechanisation and automation aboard conventional merchant vessels, employment in that sphere no longer provides regular experience in the skills required to operate a large sailing vessel in commercial traffic.  In 1978, a specialist nautical academy was established at Enkhuizen in the Netherlands to offer formal instruction in all aspects of traditional seamanship. Each year since then the School has turned out graduates who have found employment in traditional vessels in the charter trade or in large yachts, both in European waters and further afield.

The reputation of the Enkhuizen Nautical School has spread such that now up to 100 students are  accepted to study there each year, and an increasing proportion come from outside the Netherlands.  Hitherto, most of the instruction has been in the Dutch language, and all students have required a knowledge of that language to complete their examinations.  As a move to make its facilities more accessible to non-Dutch speakers, courses will now be offered in English.

The courses are principally at two levels.  The ‘Kleine Zeilvaart’ course trains students to command level in commercial sail below 500 grt, and Chief Mate in all sailing vessels.  The ‘Grote Zeilvaart’ takes that training to an advanced level, equipping students to command any commercial sailing vessel worldwide.  For qualified merchant marine officers, there is a route to KZV or GZV endorsement by a short winter course between January & March.  The School also offers a practical course for Bosuns which can be combined with the KZV course.

The syllabus takes account of the requirements of the UK MCA for professional qualification.

For further details go to: www.ezs.nl , and then click on ‘English’.

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