18th Century shipping battling a sharp squall

Boleh’s Patron Appointed Governor of Gibraltar

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The Boleh Trust is very proud to report that our Patron, Vice Admiral Sir David Steel is to take up the post of Governor and Commander-in-Chief of the British Overseas Territory Gibraltar in June.  Sir David, who generously remains our Patron, will become Her Majesty the Queen’s Representative in the Territory.

The ‘Rock’ is a familiar image and this picture shows 18th Century shipping battling a sharp squall off the town.  These were exactly the conditions Roger and Wendy Angel faced when trying to enter the Mediterranean with Boleh in 1986, calling first at Gibraltar.  We wish our Patron fairer weather and every success in his new Appointment.

Boleh heading downwind, sporting her signature rig of boomed-out headsails and with a hint of sunshine ahead.

Skies Brighten for Boleh

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In these dark times, there’s just a glimmer of light ahead.  It is encouraging to be able to report donations to the Boleh Trust from the Garfield Weston Foundation and from The Trinity House Maritime Charity.  This generosity is particularly appreciated at a time when there are so many calls on charities.  The Boleh Trust is extremely grateful to these two important organisations for renewing their support of our work.

These monies will help towards the core costs of operarting and caring for Boleh, as well as supporting the Trust’s programme for the Naval Families Federation and Pompey’s Military Kids in particular.  We desperately hope it will not be too long before we are able to get children to sea again.  Picture shows Boleh heading downwind, sporting her signature rig of boomed-out headsails and with a hint of sunshine ahead.

Naga Pelangi, maiden journey, Terengganu to Pulau Kapas, 1981

Historic meeting – Boleh and Naga Pelangi

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In 1984 two unusual vessels with a shared history met by accident in Ibiza.  Boleh and her owner Roger Angel, bound for Majorca, anchored near the traditional Malay pinas (schooner) Naga Pelangi, with owner Christoph Swoboda onboard.  Naga Pelangi (Malay for Rainbow Dragon) subsequently circumnavigated the Globe with Christoph, while Boleh and Roger made their home in the Mediterranean.

We are grateful to Christoph for contacting us to explain the link; both boats were built, 30 years apart, by the same shipwright family from Terengganu on the East coast of Malaysia.  Naga Pelangi was built in 1980 by Che Ali bin Ngah and his sons at the same time as Roger was restoring the fire ravaged Boleh in Rye Harbour.  And it was Che Ali in his youth who, with Embong bin Salleh, travelled to Singapore in 1949 to build Boleh for her designer Commander Robin Kilroy!

Picture shows Naga Pelangi on her maiden voyage in 1981.  We’ve also posted other pictures of this lovely boat and of Che Ali on Facebook and Instagram, including a picture of Boleh leaving Ibiza, taken by Christoph in 1984.  More about Naga Pelangi and the unique form of construction employed by Terengganu shipwrights can be found at www.naga-pelangi.com

Halcyon and the Boleh Trust will work together to provide young people with an inspiring introduction to sailing

Team Effort – Boleh to work with Halcyon

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We are delighted to report that Boleh will again have the professional support of Halcyon Yachts Ltd for the fifth year running.  The Trust recently signed a Service Level Agreement with the Company for yacht management and crewing services, complementing the amazing work undertaken by our volunteers.  When the sailing Season re-starts,  Halcyon and the Boleh Trust will work together to provide young people with an inspiring introduction to sailing – as shown in this picture from last year.


Boleh to benefit from Bigger Bursary

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Boleh receives quarterly bursary payments from the Association of Sail Training Organisations (ASTO) reflecting the number of young persons sailed in the past year.  Because of the difficulties now facing all those involved in Sail Training, the ASTO Board has decided to increase the next round of payments.  The Boleh Trust and other Sail Training organisations will therefore benefit from a lump sum payment which doubles the remainder of the funds due for the year and is able to be used without restriction.  Thank you ASTO – a boost for hard hit charities.

Boleh’s Story in Practical Boat Owner!

Boleh’s Story in Practical Boat Owner!

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We’re thrilled to say that May’s edition of the popular magazine Practical Boat Owner (www.pbo.co.uk/publication/pbo/may-2020) has the perfect antidote to the anxieties facing us all.  Pick up a copy when shopping for essentials, then turn to page 46 where you will find Boleh the subject of a richly illustrated article.

Huw Williams, freelance writer and circumnavigator, gives full coverage to Boleh’s inspiring ‘can-do’ story before giving a detailed description of his personal experience of Boleh.  He sums up his day out  “. . .  having just been sailing on Boleh, I can’t stop smiling.  I’m just like the young children who step aboard her for sail training and say ‘Its just like a pirate ship!’ ”.  Thank you Huw and PBO, we can’t stop smiling either.

Boleh in Dorset

COVID-19 Puts Boleh Trust Business On Hold

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As we warned only a week ago, the Boleh Trust must operate within the Government Guidelines to control this catastrophic outbreak of Coronavirus.  The worsening situation now means Boleh’s exciting 2020 Sailing Programme is clearly no longer feasible.  With great regret the Boleh Trust is therefore shutting down all operations until further notice.

Boleh Trustees, the Boleh team and our operational support staff at Halcyon Yachts Ltd will be working from home, ensuring Boleh is ready for the hoped for re-start of the sailing season.   At this point, we would like to say how very grateful we are to all our generous donors, our wonderful volunteer crews and the Boleh team.  They have enabled us to present Boleh for this Season in tip top condition.

While we and our friends and supporters are facing the challenges ahead and dreaming of calm seas and a fair wind (see picture), the Trust website and social media will, we hope, continue to post stories with the ‘can-do’ spirit.  We will also continue to welcome volunteers and to seek further much appreciated support for our charitable work.  Thank you all and Good Luck

Boleh’s Classic Kiwi Connection

Boleh’s Classic Kiwi Connection

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Boleh’s family is truly global!  When Roger Angel rescued and restored Boleh in the 1980’s Dave Sully and son Adrian were there to help.  Now Adrian, who emigrated to New Zealand in 1987, has completed his own classic yacht restoration of the 45ft gaff-rigged-ketch SEAWARD.  Built about 1890 in South Island and subsequently rebuilt in 1925 with a triple skin of Kauri timber, SEAWARD’s history includes Auckland-Sydney and Sydney-Hobart races and South Pacific cruises.

When Adrian bought SEAWARD in 2013 she was in a sorry state but, as this picture of her under full sail in 2017 shows, his restoration was a complete success.  Now Adrian, who sailed again in Boleh with the Angel family in 2018, hopes his vessel will eventually follow in Boleh’s wake, working with NZ charities to provide a rewarding experience for those who will benefit most.

A good story in dark times.  Throughout the crisis we hope to continue posting stories on the website and social media to keep the ‘can-do’ spirit alive and lighten the sadness caused by COVID-19.

Boleh in calmer times, basking in the early Summer sunshine

Boleh and COVID-19

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We’ve been getting Boleh ready for an exciting sailing programme this year but even her ‘can-do’ approach must accept the inevitable impact of the Pandemic.  All decisions by the Trust follow Government guidelines

www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/coronavirus-covid-19-uk-government-response  and it is therefore certain that Boleh’s programme will have to be severely curtailed.  We will keep you all informed.

In the meantime, Mark Minshull and our volunteers are working within these guidelines and Haslar Marina’s safety plan to keep Boleh secure and ready for the start of the Season – whenever that may be.  Picture shows Boleh in calmer times, basking in the early Summer sunshine.

Boleh with a following wind off Chichester Harbour entrance

A Fair Wind for Boleh

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We are proud to report that two major charities supporting the Armed Services have given Boleh a fair wind for the Season ahead.   Thanks to substantial grants from the Nuffield Trust for the Forces of the Crown and the Royal Navy & Royal Marines Charity we are now set to deliver a full and exciting sailing programme – Coronavirus permitting.


As well as working with Pompey’s Military Kids and young Service personnel, Boleh is planned to renew her links with Dorset schools, take part in the Southampton to Dartmouth Mayflower Race, and visit Salcombe to celebrate the 70th anniversary of her arrival there after her epic voyage from Singapore.  The funds so generously donated will be used to cover specific charitable programmes and the operational costs of running Boleh.  We are extremely grateful for this wonderful support.


Picture shows Boleh with a following wind off Chichester Harbour entrance.