At 65m, the Jubilee Sailing Trust tall ship Tenacious will be the largest tall ship moored closest to Tower Bridge in the ‘Avenue of Sail’ through which the smaller vessels of the Pageant Flotilla will pass on Sunday 3rd June.
Tenacious is a tall ship with a difference because she was purpose-designed to combine traditional square-rig with special features that make it possible for physically disabled people to take a full and active role in crewing the ship side by side with able-bodied people. Such features include wheelchair lifts between deck levels, a joy stick for people who want to steer the ship but who cannot hold a wheel and an audio compass for those who want to steer but cannot see.
The ship has been selected by both the BBC and Sky News as a platform for some of their coverage on the day. There are plans to interview some of the special guests on board. These include Jon Button, a triple amputee who has climbed unassisted right to the top of Tenacious’ mast, Nick Pilgrim whose life was devastated by meningitis aged 18 and since then has sailed nearly 60 times with the JST and David Sage, whose fundraising efforts have meant that dozens of injured service personnel have benefited from a voyage with the JST.
Tenacious is operated by the Jubilee Sailing Trust (JST), a charity that was founded in 1978 especially to enable people of all physical abilities to work alongside each other as equals while enjoying the challenge of tall ship sailing. Chief Executive Alex Lochrane said: “Our Trust was originally founded thanks to a grant from the Queen’s Silver Jubilee Fund and so we were keen for Tenacious to represent this legacy and be part of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations 34 years later. We are looking forward to giving our guests and supporters who will be on board the chance to be part of this amazing event”.