Tall ship's efforts in medical drama rewarded

The Jubilee Sailing Trust’s tall ship, STS Lord Nelson, has been awarded the Peter and Simon Crowther Memorial Trophy as a result of their crucial role in a medical emergency on the 16th August during the course of the STI Tall Ships’ Race 2008.

Awarded to the vessel which contributed most significantly to the aims of sail training during a race series, the Peter and Simon Crowther Memorial Trophy has not been awarded since the Irish tall ship Asgard II won it in 2003.

Lord Nelson, which was racing towards the Dutch Port of Den Helder from Bergen in Norway, received the call and responded to the medical emergency by stowing the sails then turning around and motoring 12 miles the assistance of a casualty aboard the two masted German schooner, Johann Smidt.

Lord Nelson was closest to the vessel when the call went out and was able to assist as she was carrying both a doctor and a medical purser on board. Lord Nelson is well known throughout the Tall Ships in the Races for assisting other entrants, be it for medical emergencies or communication problems.

After transferring to Johann Smidt, Dr Simon Cunningham a volunteer doctor on Lord Nelson made the decision to have the casualty airlifted to Hospital in Newcastle.

After flying to the hospital with the casualty, Dr Cunningham was reunited with his crew aboard Lord Nelson the following day thanks to the Royal Air Force who offered to transfer him back onto the ship via a Hi- line. Upon his return, a smiling Dr Cunningham was promptly told to report to his bracing station for a change of sail!

Lord Nelson is no stranger the trophy table, having won the Friendship trophy during last year’s event for being the ship which did most to help further international understanding and friendship during the races.

Captain Neil Duncan of the Lord Nelson, whose swift actions helped ensure the casualty received medical attention, was quick to congratulate his crew, “I’m very pleased for the crew and for the voyage doctor in their contributions towards helping to win this accolade.”

For more details on the STI Tall Ships Races please visit STI website