Captain Darren blogs about the Jubilee Sailing Trust and Royal Navy’s partnership, Exercise Tenacious Wave.
“The benefits to both the Royal Navy and Jubilee Sailing Trust cannot be understated…This charter means that we can carry on doing what we do best, enabling people of all backgrounds and situations to run away to sea and follow their dreams.”
We all know how the military likes to allocate dramatic sounding names to operations, well this charter is no different. Welcome to ‘Exercise Tenacious Wave’, a collaboration between the Jubilee Sailing Trust (JST) and Royal Navy (RN). The idea is to introduce cohorts of Young Officers and Junior Rates to their first experience of life at sea.
The concept is not a new one, young sailors have gained their first experience of naval life on small boats and sailing ships throughout history, many nations still do so, as evidenced during Tall Ships Races. As we all know, there’s no better way to learn the basics of seamanship and a seafaring life than onboard a vessel such as Tenacious.
The RN certainly see the value in sail training, and it just so happened that the JST had a handy ship available to take up the slack!
I am happy to say that we are five voyages into this busy charter period working out of Her Majesty’s Naval Base, Portsmouth and it’s going very well indeed. Due to the ongoing pandemic, it was rather a difficult beginning and required all departments of the JST and the Navy’s team to adapt and work out how best to proceed safely. It was not always an easy road, but through the hard work and dedication of those past and present, we are delivering the outcomes the RN were hoping for.
Our Navy crew members are an excellent crowd, perhaps the lads use a bit too much Lynx deodorant spray in the mornings – on one occasion resulting in a fire alarm head activating before breakfast – but both lasses and lads are full of enthusiasm, are very keen to learn and to make progress in their chosen careers. They really are a credit to the Royal Navy.
Is it much different to what we ‘normally do’? I would say no, not really. We have adjusted the daily routines a little, we carry out a lot more drills than we would perhaps do, and there are training objectives for the cohorts, but the essence of what the JST is all about is the same – this of course is the key to all that we do.
The benefits to both the Royal Navy and the JST cannot be understated. From the viewpoint of the Navy it helps in the development of their young sailors, and from the perspective of the JST, it presents employment for the ship in these very uncertain and difficult times, whilst building up to the start of our summer voyage programme.
I see this not as a departure from what the JST normally does, but as an important addition to what we do. This charter means that we can carry on doing what we do best, enabling people of all backgrounds and situations to run away to sea and follow their dreams. A life on the Tenacious Wave indeed!