About the SHTP Project: This Shipshape Heritage Training Partnership (SHTP) project is managed by NHS-UK and funded by a £261,100 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund Skills for the Future programme. It provides ten 12-month training placements at five partner sites offering on-board specialist training to ensure the significance of the various historic vessels and the ability to operate them safely and effectively is kept alive. The trainees will also undertake a tailored course in historic vessel maintenance at the International Boatbuilding Training College and an interpretation placement at the Scottish Fisheries Museum. A skills mapping exercise will provide template training models for the wider sector and an assessment framework for seamanship skills will be developed as a project legacy.


Shipshape Solent hosts one of the five partner organisations in the form of Dauntsey’s School Sailing Club. Devizes/Hamble.  Jolie Brise is owned, maintained and sailed by the pupils of Dauntsey's School and is a world famous, gaff-rigged pilot cutter, the last boat to carry the Royal Mail under sail and has won the Fastnet Race three times. http://www.dauntseys.org/adventure/jolie-brise.  Whilst on board Jolie Brise, the trainees will undertake the following:

  • Learn traditional seamanship and deck work on board a gaff-rigged vessel including: handling the rig safely and setting sails for optimum performance; understanding the physics of the rig; boatwork; steering; ropework; and safety on traditional vessels
  • Undertake specialist maintenance tasks on board Jolie Brise such as rigging repairs, ropework, painting, varnishing, basic sail repairs or joinery, engine maintenance etc
  • Evening and weekend sailing with members of the local Old Gaffers Association
  • Work with pupils in the Sailing Club during Spring, Summer and half term holidays helping to train them in basic deckwork and team skills
  • Work with charter parties or pupils from other schools, particularly Mercers’ Academies, for the remainder of the season, welcoming them onboard and introducing them to safety and vessel handling procedures

Shipshape Heritage Training Partnership film

The documentary has been produced to celebrate the end of the SHTP project after two amazing years.

Watch "Learning the ropes"


 January 2016: Update

The month starterd with Luke's return to his host vessel Jolie Brise to help with the winter refit and the real world application of the skills that he had learnt at the IBTC and over the last year. The main project that had been undertaken in winter was  the replacement of some of the original timbers in the counter. Luke found it hugely fascinating considering that that area of the boat was extremely hard to access and gave a real insight into the boats life and the work that had been carried out to it over 100 years. This work was delivered alongside all the usual winter maintenance such as renewing the paint and varnish work.

Kule also joined the other SHTP Trainees to the SHTP Networking Day at the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich. There he delivered a presentation of his experience during the year.


December 2015: Update

Luke spent December at the IBTC where he expanded on skills that we had already started to learn at the benginning of the training. He mainly focused on joinery and various specialist skills such as spar making. In collaboration with the other SHTP trainees he also built a miniature mast model. Another skill that Luke developed was the traditional sail repair, focusing on fitting grommets and bolt ropes to damaged sails.


November 2015: Update

At the beginning of the month Luke had the last sailing trip of the season for the half term holidays around the Solent and the south coast. He undertook the AEC engine course which provided him an invaluable training in marine Diesel engines. After this course, began his second period at the International Boatbuilding Training College. There Luke learned basic skills for sail repair, joinery, caulking, plumbing/electronics and wire splicing. During this month he and all the trainees also took part in a group sail together.


October 2015: Update

October began with some taster day trips for new members of the Dauntsey’s School Sailing Club during which all the students had an opportunity to experience sailing on Jolie Brise. The fantastic weather made the sailing experience much more enjoyable for everyone. Luke also took part in the ASTO small ships race.


September 2015: Update

In September Luke enjoyed his Rotation 2 on the Thames barge Reminder where he had the fantastic opportunity to sailing these extremely specialised vessels and experience the idiosyncrasies of the spirit sail rig. He particularly understood why and how these vessels evolved the way they did. Luke also had the opportunity to go racing on the engineless oyster smack Sally in the Maldon regatta


August 2015: Update

The month started with a charter from Denmark back to Ipswich via the Netherlands and the last cruise with students over the summer holidays. During the longer passages of this trip Luke put in practice his astronavigation skills given his enhanced boat handling. Luke also moved deeper his understanding the rig as a whole, tightening up the boats standing rigging. Jolie Brise took part in Sail Amsterdam in company of hundreds of boats and this became particularly interesting to see the Dutch sailing barges.


July 2015: Update

In July Luke took part in the Tall Ships races on his hosting vessel Jolie Brise. They sailed from Belfast to Aalesund, Norway, and from Kristiansand, Norway to Aalborg, Denmark. In first instance the race challenged him on a longer distance sailing legs on peculiar weather conditions. There was also the opportunity to see a variety of different traditional and historic vessels from all round the world. Luke studied up them close and in detail, looking into their respective qualities and stories. After the sail he undertook ongoing maintenance touching up the paint and varnish on board.


June 2015: Update

In June Luke went on the trawler Leader with Trinity Sailing for his first Rotation. This placement also gave him a greater insight into a different type of working historical vessel. He discovered different specific techniques and set of skills required to work this type of vessel. Moreover, Luke learnt new methodologies of conservation of an historic vessel, such as adapting the ship as faithfully as possible to be used as sail training vessels, maintaining her original features. 


May 2015: Update

Luke took part in the pilot cutter review, St George's Trophy - Yarmouth Pilot Cutter Regatta. This provided Luke with a great opportunity to develop skills such as sail trim and selection of sails for specific conditions. Moreover he had the chance to see other original historic vessels including the pilot cutters Olga and Mascot and several replicas. For the rest of the month, he did more ongoing maintenance on Jolie Brise which included engine and generator services and re caulking areas of the deck.


April 2015: Update

The month began with work on Luke's host vessel, Jolie Brise, preparing the boat for the season. This work included: seizing the shackles on the running rigging; tightening and adjusting the standing rigging; varnishing various areas below and above decks, using appropriate varnish systems. Luke also undertook the RYA Yachtmaster Ocean theory course, learning about various topics including traditional astro navigation with use of a sextant. Finally, he worked on the first sail training charter of the year, cruising around the Solent, hoisting and setting sails, organising and running watches. 


March 2015: Update

Luke spent March at the International Boatbuilding Training College in Lowestoft learning and refining core practical skills for the required ongoing maintenance of his host vessel. These included carpentry, ropework, painting and varnishing. He also had some hands-on restoration sessions, steaming and fitting planks to a double diagonal planking on real vessels.


February 2015: Update

This month was spent by Luke and the other SHTP trainees at the Scottish Fisheries Museum in Anstruther learning about managing heritage projects in relation to historic vessels. This involved sessions on curatorial practices, fundraising, volunteer management and development of educational and outreach projects.  Alongside the theoretical sessions, trips were run to illustrate various successes and pitfalls that different organisations had encountered.   The trainees also worked on the herring baldie "White Wing" removing timbers for it to be reconstructed. Whilst in Anstruther they had the opportunity to take part in rowing the Scottish Fisheries Museum’s St Ayles skiff.


New trainee chosen for SHTP Solent

Luke Duckworth was selected as the SHTP trainee for the Solent region.  As a previous student of Dauntsey's School, he had already sailed on 'Jolie Brise' as a teenager, taking part in various Tall Ships races.  He had also sailed on other historic vessels, including 'Maybe' (1929 90ft gaff ketch) and 'Morwenna' (60ft replica Bristol channel pilot cutter) and worked as a yacht instructor for a season in Greece.  Luke had previously gained his RYA Yachtmaster Offshore ticket and his PADI openwater.

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