“At 12:41:11 GMT on 22 November 2012 the big moment arrived; Lord Nelson’s bell rang out as the ship crossed the line into the southern hemisphere for the very first time. We watched as the GPS counted down the latitude to zero at the Equator and the ‘N’ changed to ‘S’.” extract from Lord Nelson’s crew blog
The Jubilee Sailing Trust (JST)’s tall ship Lord Nelson was built to sail anywhere in the world by a mixed crew of disabled and able-bodied people, but until the close of 2012, had never before ventured beyond European and North Atlantic waters. Now the ship is on her way to becoming the first disability-accessible tall ship to sail around the world.
Lord Nelson set off from the UK on 21st October and recently made landfall in Recife, Brazil. “Members of the crew were at times bemused by the number of people who came up to them pointing and telling us that we had been on TV!” says the crew blog.
Next stop is Rio de Janeiro, the host city of the Olympics and Paralympics 2016. Alexandra Rickham, Paralympic sailing bronze medallist and Vice-Patron of the JST, waved off the ship and her crew in Southampton and will be in Rio to welcome them to Brazil. There is enormous interest in the Paralympic movement in Brazil and Alexandra’s participation in Lord Nelson’s Rio programme will be key to attracting interest from the press and others. Alexandra’s role in Rio will be to raise awareness of the JST’s work with disabled people and help spread its ethos to a much wider audience in Rio and beyond.
Lord Nelson will welcome a new crew in Rio who will have the opportunity to see Copacabana’s famous New Year’s Eve fireworks before setting sail for Tristan da Cunha and Cape Town.
Follow Lord Nelson’s progress on the Jubilee Sailing Trust’s Facebook page or sign up to take part at www.jst.org.uk