You will see from the picture why we fell in love with Barmouth! The harbour master Arthur Jones and Assistant HM Bergitte Evans were away when we visited. However Martin Kimpton, a retired policeman, and now the Beach Patrol Officer, looked after us in great style and told us all about this fascinating harbour.
It is not called “BAR”mouth for no reason and the entrance included sailing over not one but two sand bars. The tide runs strongly in both directions and a boat just departing had had a cleat pulled out from its deck by the strong currents.
We were shown the Sailors’s Institute room, the brand new life boat station and we met the chairman of the Three Peaks Yacht Race who kindly gave us a donation!
In the late 19th century as railways extended into remoter towns like Barmouth, there was a decline in local sea traffic by sail. So the men of the town had to relocate to the larger ports, and so were based away from home on voyages that lasted up to two years. In 1890 The Rev Hughes built an institute building, common in many seafaring towns, where the families could gather and get news of their sailing men. The one in Barmouth still exists and even has a free daily paper available for visitors to read.
When the RNLI do something, they do it properly! We were shown around an amazing brand new Shannon Class lifeboat with its 2,650 HP jet engines. Together with its submersable tractor it can launch it off the beach in all weathers. Having seen the technology in the boat and the size of the tractor it is no surprise each costs £2 million pounds!
Wendy Ponsford is chairman of The National Three Peaks Yacht Race (sailing to, cycling and running up Snowdon, Scar Fell Pyke and Ben Nevis). The event has been going for 42 years, starts in Barmouth and she kindly gave a donation to Seafarers UK. Thank you Wendy and to Martin.
About the Harbour Master Sailing Challenge: I am circumnavigating #GB attempting to visit every #harbour with a #harbourmaster #fundraising to #support @Seafarers_UK and their work in the #martime industry, supporting #seafarersand their #families. You can #sponsor my #challenge by visiting the link in my bio.