Land ahoy! Students crew Matthew on harbour cruises
STUDENTS are crewing the Matthew on cruises around the Floating Harbour and down the Avon Gorge as part of a maritime course.
The six Year 10 students from Merchants' Academy in Withywood are following a specially-designed year-long course.
Stephen Waldron, deputy head teacher at the academy, said: "Working with the Matthew Trust, the students will learn everything about the ship, including seamanship, radio use, safety, navigation and even cooking in the galley.
"This is an exclusive and exciting opportunity for the students that could possibly see them crewing the ship on one of its voyages to other parts of the country, and even the world."
Enjoy one free child admission with a full paying adult ticket.
Terms: Not to be used in conjunction with any discounted ticket or special ticket offer. No cash alternative. Excludes Bank Holidays and Bank Holiday Weekends. Ref: This is Bristol Website Voucher
Contact: 01963 400330
Valid until: Friday, January 31 2014
The students, known as Matthew Cadets, comprise two girls and four boys.
One of the cadets, Kyle Cording, said: "I am learning things about the ship that I didn't know. It is helping me to understand why Bristol's history is so important."
Another, Jordan Buet, 15, said: "I have steered the boat on harbour cruises and hope to continue with this after I leave school. Its great fun."
John Wilson, the Matthew's education officer, said: "The course includes everything from harbouring the ship to how to steer it, health and safety matters, how the ship was built and how explorers navigated in medieval times.
"Being on board the ship gives the students experience of working as a team and helps to boost their confidence and self-respect."
The 17-year-old replica Matthew, the ship in which medieval explorer John Cabot discovered Newfoundland, is undergoing repairs in dry dock at Underfall Yard, Cumberland Basin, and afterwards will be taken to its new base outside M Shed near Prince Street Bridge.
Mr Wilson said: "The cadets have spent some time at Underfall Yard. I've been showing them the underwater part of the ship and the repairs that are necessary and telling them about the cause. This is all part of understanding ship husbandry."