Virgin Islands Sloop Foundation Launches At Nanny Cay

The newly formed Virgin Islands Sloop Foundation (VISF) was launched last night at a Beach BBQ here at Nanny Cay.  Memberships were sold with Geoff Brooks, author of Building A Virgin Islands Sloop, signing copies of his book.  Janet Oliver of the BVI Charter Society was the first member to sign up!

The Virgin Islands Sloop Foundation’s aim is to preserve the maritime heritage of the Virgin Islands by ensuring that the history and knowledge of traditional wooden boat building is passed on to future generations.

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Cedar School Takes A Maritime History Tour

Just before Christmas, a group of Cedar School students visited the historic Tortola Boats (Virgin Island Sloops).  Jamel ¨Fiyah¨ Davies and Norissa deLeon led the tour.  Jamel´s grandfather and uncle both built Tortola Boats and he enthusiastically imparts his knowledge of this part of his heritage.

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Tortola Boats To Be Restored And Housed At Nanny Cay

Efforts to restore, preserve and sail the historic Tortola Boats (Virgin Island Sloops) has started again here at Nanny Cay.  The programme continues to be headed by Professor Geoff Brooks, who has nurtured these boats for many years as the Curator of the Virgin Islands Maritime Museum, and the newly formed Virgin Islands Sloop Foundation (VISF), a nonprofit organisation.

Nanny Cay is providing work and storage space near the swimming pool and over time, this area will be developed into a more permanent visitors centre and maritime museum.

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Intrepid Wins 3rd Annual VP Bank Tortola Sloop Spring Challenge

Today was all about switching gears and changing pace, with the 3rd Annual VP Bank Tortola Sloop Spring Challenge being raced off Nanny Cay as part of the BVI Spring Regatta’s Maritime Heritage Day.

The Challenge brings to life the significance that the beautiful old Tortola Sloops played in island life more than a hundred years ago, and celebrates the theme of sailing which has always been a mainstay of island culture.

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2015 Sloop Shootout goes to the Premier (Again); Martin Van Houten Honoured

Premier and Minister of Tourism, Hon. Dr. Orlando Smith, received his Great Festival Sloop Shootout trophy on the lawns of Nanny Cay last week for his victory in this year’s event.

Director of the Virgin Islands Studies Institute at the HLSCC, Dr. Angel Smith, presented Premier Smith and his team with the award recognising his office’s seventh victory in 12 years.

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VP Bank Tortola Sloop Spring Challenge: Fairy Tale for Esmie

On board Tortola Sloop, Youth Instructor: John S. Duncan OBE, Governor of the British Virgin Islands and President of VP Bank, Sjoerd Koster © Todd vanSickle/BVI Spring Regatta

The 2nd Annual VP Bank Tortola Sloop Spring Challenge took place off Nanny Cay today as part of the BVI Spring Regatta’s Maritime Heritage Day. The sloops date back over 100 years and this year’s event had two noteworthy participants; His Excellency, John S. Duncan OBE, Governor of the British Virgin Islands and Sjoerd Koster, President VP Bank (BVI).

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Premier Collects Sloop Shootout Trophy

At a ceremony held on the lawns of the Nanny Cay Hotel, Premier, Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith, OBE, received his trophy for winning this year’s “Island Sloop Sailing Festival Regatta Annual Festival Races”.

This event, started in 2004 and better known as the “Sloop Shootout”, pits the incumbent Premier and Governor against each in a regatta held in the traditional Tortola Sloops during the August Emancipation Festival.

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Tortola Sloop, Intrepid, officially returned home today

At a presentation held today at Peg Legs Restaurant, Intrepid, a Tortola Sloop, was presented to the Virgin Islands Maritime Museum by the BVI Spring Regatta & Sailing Festival in association with VP Bank. Intrepid will join Moonbeam and Youth Instructor on the docks here at Nanny Cay – the unofficial home of these historic boats.

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Tortola Sloop Shootout at Nanny Cay

Tortola Sloops at Nanny CayFor years, Tortola was a major boat-building island, gaining a reputation for wooden boats known as Tortola Sloops. They were used extensively throughout the greater Virgin Islands, in particular when it came to shipping cattle from Anegada to St. Thomas.

“These boats are a major part of maritime heritage here,” said Geoffrey Brooks, who curates the Maritime Museum at H. Lavity Stoutt Community College’s Centre for Applied Marine Studies.

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