Royal Navy sailors are learning the art of seafaring on a traditional tall ship, say the Royal Navy.

According to the Royal Navy website, a ‘square rigger’ called TS Tenacious is running in and out of Portsmouth with Royal Navy sailors performing tasks and duties Nelson would recognise: from heaving and hauling lines to set the sails, to watchkeeping and steering.

“The use of the Jubilee Sailing Trust’s Tenacious is helping to plug the gap left by the closure of the Navy’s command and leadership school in the Brecon Beacons due to the pandemic.”

Sailors and ship's company of TS Tenacious haul a line

Commander Adrian Coulthard from the Royal Navy’s training organisation was quoted as saying:

“In a difficult period for Royal Navy training due to the pandemic, the use of the Jubilee Sailing Trust has allowed us to continue to provide top quality core leadership and team training in a maritime context.

It has also meant we have been able to maintain our training pipeline throughflow, while providing our trainees with early and very valuable experience – from maintaining watches to living and working in the challenging maritime domain.”


It is understood that Tenacious, which gives people of all abilities the chance to sail in a tall ship, is normally used by businesses and civilian groups for leadership training and bonding, but hasn’t taken anyone to sea since the first Covid lockdown 12 months ago.

“For Royal Navy sailors, time on Tenacious is either a stepping stone to promotion or, for those undergoing training, their first time of living and working on a ship – including the challenges of overcoming seasickness and the challenges of cold. As well as the teamwork required just to sail the ship, sailors also take part in a series of planning and practical leadership tasks under the watchful eyes of Tenacious’ regular crew.”

You can read more about this here.

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Daniele Mandelli

Ah! The expansion of the RN begins! The first leak/hint of things to come!

Wonder what she’s armed with?

Andy P

Belay that ye scurvy swab… or it be the black spot for you.

Daniele Mandelli

Ooo Arrrh!


Fitted for but not with weaponry I assume? Will the MOD ever learn? 😉


At last, the first look at the Type 32! Hopefully, there will be plenty of hard tac, lashings, and the odd keelhauling, it’s just what a modern crew need….plus a few chinless wonders on the bridge.


Good to see this at Gloucester Tall Ships in 2022.


I can hear Boris now stating we have the largest and greenest navy in Europe.
Is it true the replacement for CR2 is all electric.


Hauling lines and setting sails – all very useful on gas turbine and diesel powered warships!!

Stephen Ball

Replenishment at sea. Hauling lines still on gas and diesel.
Dock line handling. Hauling lines.


I always wondered why RN did not had a sail training ship like many navies: Italy, Spain, Portugal even the Germans a traditional land power.


We do she’s called TS Royalist


Thanks. Quite smaller than the other countries i posted about. Another advantage of being bigger those also work for goodwill visits in foreign ports.


Then it doesn’t fit in the majority of small ports and harbours around the UK where the cadets are based so then you need tenders to get the crews on and off ship, then we hit the ‘to expensive to have’ bracket. 1 of the captains of Royalist is a member of the same yacht club as me and they still do plenty on foreign port visits along the channel and North Sea.


That brings back happy memories. I sailed a few times on TS Lord Nelson, now sadly laid up in Bristol Harbor. The ships are specially designed to carry mixed able bodied and disabled crews, they are the first (and as far as I know only) ships designed for that role. As a disabled person who has used calipers and a stick to walk all my life I managed to climb to the main course yard and work the sails at least once on each trip. I also qualified as a watch leader and did a few trips as watch leader.… Read more »

Richard B

I spent 10 days on TS Royalist as a teenager. Some great memories and experiences.
The highlight was the first morning. All the kids were tucking into a full English breakfast. I was filling my face when I noticed kids rapidly climbing the ladder. They eventually came back looking white as a sheet.
Thankfully I don’t suffer motion sickness.

More breakfast for me. 🤤


Press gang and keel hauling next.

Trevor W Hogg

Is this incase the engine replacement programme for the Type 45 runs a little over

Jan van der Werk

“Maintain our training pipeline throughflow”. Who writes this stuff? It sounds like an advertisement for a sewage farm. Is this the future? Green warfare and zero carbon footprint ships. Reminds me of the episode of Dads Army when they all poke SMLE’s through holes in the butcher’s van. “Bang 1,2,3”!
Forgive my infantry humor.

Peter S

Read Nick Carter’s Integrated Operating Plan- laugh or cry?

Christopher Allen

At least it is more advanced than anything the Argies have floating.


Lovely ship. Nice to give sailors that experience and change their routine. Still very relevant to train crews to work as a cohesive unit. Hopefully officers get to practice/learn old school navigation, always helpful if modern systems go down for some unexpected reason.


Ummmmmm well I’m not going to comment on the value of leadership training on a sailing ship. But I am going to comment on the infection prevention and Control (IPC). The navy has closed a land based school due to the pandemic, OK that’s fine……..but they have replaced this with a sailing ship…. WTF….. I cannot think of a more difficult ( actually impossible) place to manage infection prevention and control. I’m really sorry but did they forget to ask their nurses about this ?…. a land based facility can be managed. You can isolate, clean and control developing leadership… Read more »