Wednesday, 20 August 2014

The Minehead Currach

From time to time we do divert ourselves with other boating types and this week we were in Minehead, Somerset, for the annual raft race supervised by and raising money for the Royal National Lifeboat Institute (RNLI).

Some of the rafts were more speedy canoes-cum-catamarans, while others were ramshackle frames lashed to barrels (and this one made up as a tank!)
But what caught my eye in particular was this traditional boat, a currach,  a type of Irish boat with a wooden frame, over which animal skins or hides were once stretched, though now canvas is more usual and this particular boat uses "ballistic nylon" sewn by the Leather Workshop at Withycombe.  The construction and design of a currach are unique to the west coasts of Ireland and Scotland, and what is astonishing to me is that this boat was made in one week using local materials (Exmoor spruce, green oak and hazel) and local volunteers.
For more information go to The Minehead Currach on Facebook or UTube "Minehead Currach Build".

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