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WM Nixon

WM Nixon

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William M Nixon has been writing about sailing in Ireland for many years in print and online, and his work has appeared internationally in magazines and books. His own experience ranges from club sailing to international offshore events, and he has cruised extensively under sail, often in his own boats which have ranged in size from an 11ft dinghy to a 35ft cruiser-racer. He has also been involved in the administration of several sailing organisations.

The 20-ton ketch Morna on Ballyholme Beach in September 1935 after a mooring gave way in a nor’east gale
Ballyholme Bay in Bangor on Belfast Lough is a Jekyll-&-Hyde sort of place. For much of the time, it’s serene, with excellent sailing waters off a neat urban waterfront above a tidy esplanade on its western shoreline, while the eastern…
Gentle start to a great voyage – Saoirse getting under way in Dun Laoghaire on June 20th 1923
Barry Keane and Tony Doherty of Mountaineering Ireland have formally proposed that commemorative postage stamps be issued to celebrate the up-coming Centenary of Conor O’Brien’s pioneering voyage round the world south of the Great Capes with his Irish-built 42ft ketch…
International star Dominic West of Glin Castle on the Shannon Estuary will be bringing his enthusiasm for waterways and boats to the Ilen ceremony in London on May 4th
The complex and long-standing relationship between the ancient city ports of Limerick and London will be celebrated with a ceremony on the historic Trading Ketch Ilen in the London city-centre St Katharine Dock, beside Tower Bridge on the River Thames,…
One rudder or two....? The Mark Mills-designed 1996-vintage Dun Laoghaire
veteran Raptor (ex-Aztec) has aged very well, and will be challenging
all craft in Howth's Lambay Race on Saturday 4th June as part of the
Wave Regatta
The recent Sailing on Saturday for April 16th discussed how the new-to-Ireland Mark Mills Cape 31 design will be making its Irish debut with four boats at Howth's Wave Regata, which is built around thelong-established Lambay Race, scheduled in 2022…
The start of a stellar career. Peter Beamish (RStGYC) racing his new Mills 31 Aztec to success in the 1996 Lambay Race at Howth
With at least four Mark Mills-designed Cape 31s making their Irish class debut at the Wave Regatta in Howth from June 3rd to 5th, we will see one very important wheel come full circle. For it was a 31ft Mark…
Hal Sisk with the re-build of the record-breaking 1912 schooner Atlantic in Dun Laoghaire
Hal Sisk of Dun Laoghaire has tonight (Tuesday) received the International Classic Boater of the Year Award in London for his decades of inspired service to classic craft and sailing history, while his colleagues Fionan de Barra of Dun Laoghaire…
Quiet determination – Rachael Blackmore in winning form
The possibility that stellar jockey Rachael Blackmore, the winner of the Grand National in 2021 and the Cheltenham Gold Cup this year, might just be descended from a noted Dublin nautical family has emerged from traditional boat enthusiast and maritime…
Joe Woodward in 2004 with the William Van der Hagen 1738 painting of the Water Club sailing in Cork Harbour, which made for one of his most historic auctions.
Joe Woodward of Cork, who has died aged 90, was the very personification of the spirit of Cork city and harbour as a place where the good things in life are there to be enjoyed, and enjoyed in style. This…
Looking good – The Ilen team of Aodh, Eugene & Mike with their ship looking spic and span after her Spring refit at Oldcourt.
The restored 56ft trading ketch Ilen of 1926 vintage and Conor O’Brien fame has been blithely passage-making to and fro at speed – despite the unsettled weather – along the southwest coast in recent weeks, as Ilen Marine School Director…
The Volvo 70 Telefonica Black is in the latest group of Round Ireland entries which has more than doubled the fleet numbers
When this year’s SSE Renewables Round Ireland Race 2022 was top of the agenda on Afloat.ie a fortnight ago, it was in the context of Wicklow Sailing Club being in double celebratory mode. They’d already logged 18 high-quality early entries…
Volvo Cork Week in full cry – as normality returns, this is the sort of sailing Ireland does best
The past two years would have been difficult enough for Irish sailing as we navigated our way - usually with reasonable success – towards keeping our sport as active as possible through various manifestations of the pandemic regulations. But in…
The eye-catching sight of the restored International 15 Metres racing in the Mediterranean is to be replicated off Barcelona as the boats-of-choice for the 37th America’s Cup in 2024
As the dust settles on the global kerfuffle over the torrid venue selection process for the 37th America’s Cup Series in 2024 with Barcelona taking the prize, it emerges from leaked documents that the final big money agreement includes various…
After a three-year pandemic lay-off, the IUSA Keelboat Nats come back to colourful life in the club-owned J/80s at Howth
The last weekend of March in Ireland is usually not noted for an almost-dangerous amount of highly-radiated sunshine and light breezes. But Race Officer Scorie Walls had to cope with both at Howth in putting through the full 18-race programme…
St Katharine Docks in the heart of London – the Limerick
ketch Ilen will be taking up temporary residence here for a cultural
exchange visit early in May
The programme for the “cultural voyage” of the 56ft restored Limerick trading ketch Ilen to London in late April and through the first fortnight of May continues to take shape. The ship herself is now back in her birthplace at…
Barcelona waterfront
The revelation that the mighty Spanish sailing resort and port city of Barcelona has been secretly putting together a powerful hosting bid for the 2024 America’s Cup in the heart of vibrant Catalonia has been bruising news down Cork Harbour…
The master at work – the late Aidan Tyrrell effortlessly on the wheel in a brisk run back from West Cork, avoiding the irksome use of oilskins through his skill in ensuring that no white water breaks on board
Aidan Tyrrell of Cork was about as far as it was possible to be from the status of a nationally-known sailing figure. It was a situation that chimed well with his intensely private nature. Yet throughout Ireland, there were many…
Seasoned campaigners: The First 310 More Mischief (Grzegorz Kalinecki, Dun Laoghaire, left) and the J/122 Aurelia (Chris Power Smith, RStGYC, right) are Numbers 1 and 3 in the growing entry list for the SSE Renewables Round Ireland race from Wicklow on June 18th 2022
For most of us, the pandemic has been a matter of two years in limbo. And it maybe isn’t over yet, even if everyone is behaving as though we’re well into the end game. But for gallant little Wicklow Sailing…
Revised overall results have been issued for the DBSC Spring Chicken Series
Some people find saying "sorry" very difficult, but DBSC's Winter Wunderkind Fintan Cairns has given us a graceful example of how to do it with his re-setting of the final results for the latest Spring Chicken Series, which concluded at…
It’s prehistoric in Intervarsity racing terms – the winning IUSA Keelboat Nationals Team at Howth in March 2019 (the last time the event was staged) were (left to right) Ewan O’Keeffe, Mark Murphy, Morgan Knight, Harry Durcan (helm) and Grattan Roberts (Tactician), with HYC Commodore Ian Byrne and Race Officer Scorie Walls.
Time was when the Student Yachting Worlds in France was quite the thing, and never more so than in October 2008 when National Universities Champion Nin O’Leary of Cork Institute of Technology won it for Ireland from a very international…
“Keep calm and carry on….” Shannon One Design Senior Statesman Alan Algeo – a former Lough Ree YC Commodore – looking notably serene in the midst of a developing situation
While the sailing programme during the past two years has managed to be played out afloat in a truncated form whenever changing regulations permitted, anything which involved a significant shoreside element of socialising was either cancelled completely, or else moth-balled…
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