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Bosun School Lunenburg

Bosun School – The Wrap Up

Our 8th Bosun School has come to a close, and we had a lovely graduation ceremony at Lunenburg’s historic Dory Shop on Friday 18 December. Closing ceremonies are an important part of the Bosun School. Each of the participants works so hard -it isn’t easy, this school of ours. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to get through it, and that is one of the reasons we only offer it to individuals who already have some amount of sea experience under their belt; people who already know they want to work at sea.  So much hard work deserves acknowledgement, and the closing ceremony is designed to provide that. In the final weeks of the school, Captain Moreland met individually with each of the participants to talk about what they see in their future. He was able to provide them with advice, suggestions, and recommendations, sometimes helping them with their plan and sometimes pointing them in another direction. Some of the graduates are planning going on to take additional courses from other institutions; some are going on to work on other ships; all were offered the opportunity to crew the ship as Picton Castle heads to Bermuda in February.  Almost all accepted the offer. Because as important as it is to have the   the time to dedicate to learning these skills on land, there is no better place to practice these new skills than at sea. Captain Sikkema is heading south with a very capable crew indeed! The graduation at the Dory Shop was a great night. It started with some music by Bosun School students Cici, Anders & Lars, along with a few drinks and snacks, then a sit-down meal of hot […]

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Bosun School

Rigging Lessons for Bosun School

We’ve been fortunate to have great weather this fall, which is all the better for rigging lessons! As with most other topics at Bosun School, we’ve been learning, then practicing, then applying the skills. Having learned and been practicing seizings, splices and servings, it’s now time to cement the knowledge by using it to make […]

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Bosun School Lunenburg

Festive Weekend in Lunenburg

Lunenburg was alive with festive spirit this weekend and the Bosun School students took part in the celebrations. On Friday evening, people gathered on the waterfront to see the lighting of the vessels. Vessels at the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic and Adams & Knickle usually participate, along with Bluenose II, and this year we […]

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Bosun School Lunenburg

Happy Thanksgiving!

One of the fun things about sailing with an international crew is celebrating holidays from different countries.  It’s the same in Bosun School, with students of a number of different nationalities.  We celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving back in October, and are celebrating American Thanksgiving today. Niko is busy cooking up a big delicious dinner and we’ve […]

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Bosun School

Heaving Line Throwing Practice

When vessels come alongside to dock, they need to get lines ashore in order to tie the vessel to the wharf. Big ships need big lines. It’s not possible to throw these lines because they’re so heavy, so a lighter weight line is tied to the mooring line. These lighter weight lines, called heaving lines, […]

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Bosun School

Wire Splicing at Bosun School

Students at Picton Castle‘s Bosun School have been learning to splice wire this week. Captain Moreland started by demonstrating the method, then the students paired up to work on splicing their own wires together.  After each pair had completed their splice, Captain Moreland did a second demonstration of the technique, now that the students had […]

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Bosun School

A Beautiful Day To Work Aloft!

October is usually beautiful in Nova Scotia, with all the leaves changing colours. This year, October has also been warm, sunny and wonderful for being outdoors. Bosun School is taking advantage of the weather to spend some time aloft on Picton Castle. Students learned yesterday how to lead “up and overs”, the process of taking […]

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Bosun School Lunenburg

Why Train Under Sail?

From the mid 19th century until the mid 20th century, sailing ships were the incubator and hatchery for almost all deep-sea steam-ship mariners be they naval or merchant marine. This is what came to be known as “trained in sail” or later, “sail training”. This training service came about due to the extraordinarily rich seamanship […]

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Bosun School Lunenburg

Second Layout of a Mizzen Staysail

On Monday, the Bosun School students went to the Lunenburg Community Centre to use the gym floor to lay out a sail. Actually, this is the second layout for this sail – it had its first layout back in 2015 when Picton Castle was in Cape Town, South Africa. As Picton Castle sails to various […]

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Bosun School

Bosun School Learns Sailmaking

For the past week or so, Bosun School students have been focused on learning sail making. Picton Castle is fairly unique in that we make all of our own sails on board the ship, so depending on which vessels our Bosun School students work aboard in the future, they may or may not have the […]