ASTO   Association of Sea Training Organisations  -  ASTO 




Max Energy has conducted a review of the many sailing organisations around the world and continue to report the news and current events on this site as a free service to the sailing public.  If you would like us to include your sailing enterprise or organisation, please email us with your details, website address, etc.





Anyone over the age of 25 who would like to join a ship as a crew member should log on to the Association of Sea Training Organisations ASTO website

The Tall Ships also sail on non-race voyages all year round. 




Sail training manning the yards





The Association of Sea Training Organisations (ASTO) is an umbrella association that exists to represent the major offshore sail training schemes in the United Kingdom.  ASTO plays a similar role to that of the RYA in this respect, where the RYA represent boaters in general.  For example, both the RYA and ASTO played a part in advising the Government's Maritime & Coastguard Agency in the drafting of 'Codes of Practice' for sailing vessels. 






Seeing the masts appear above the roofs of Great Yarmouth gave us the first hint of the scale of the challenge that awaited us; up until this point the ships had only existed as glossy photos in a brochure. We had all read the advertising preamble about how this would be a ‘life changing experience’ and a ‘personal voyage of self discovery’ but until that moment the reality hadn't hit home.  We had never been to sea before, let alone being expected to be an integral part of the crew on a 60 metre long ship with 19 sails, and two masts.


The mini bus journey down to Great Yarmouth lasted about 5 hours which was plenty of time to get to know some of our fellow northern crew members, all from widely differing backgrounds but with the same level of building expectation and excitement as the miles ticked by.


Group of people on board the tall ship voyage


Offshore sailing for young people



Divided into groups


On arrival we were all divided into three watches; red, white and blue and it was with that group of 12 people that we would become very close; in fact each of us would know exactly who was most likely to be sea sick (and when) and who needed to be woken up with a bucket of cold water come the start of the midnight watch. The first few days on board were a shock for some, as the cleaning rota, early mornings and limited personal space took their toll. This was counter-acted by the thrill of taking the helm of the 493 ton brig and climbing the 45 metre high masts. 


Learning the ropes and sailing tactics also needed concentration since there are 9 miles of rope and wire; heaving in one line meant finding the corresponding rope to slacken - not always easy on a dark, pitching deck.  It also required the combined team work of all three watches directed by very talented and able watch leaders, who were to become our friends and mentors. Other members of the permanent crew were also seen as invaluable for keeping the moral of the ship high – the galley staff!  ‘Big Bird’s Diner’ was always anticipated with great enthusiasm after bracing the yards, scaling the rigging or scrubbing the decks! 




Tall ship sail training



The captain and first officer had a vital role to play in keeping us abreast of weather formations, the ships manoeuvres and the navigational tricks of the trade and ensuring our safe arrival at North Shields where we collected some local dignitaries and press and brought them up river to Newcastle Quayside. The weather dictated the voyage and an impending Force 9 gale meant that the planned trip to Northern Holland was not possible; instead we anchored in Runswick Bay and played Frisbee on the beach (our first foot on land in four days) whilst our assistant engineer Neil prepared a fantastic BBQ complete with punch. 


Our voyage also took us to Alnmouth Bay; we were unable to get ashore so instead we played boat races, knot relays, ships murder mysteries and who dunnit, and then we all composed our own songs with varying degrees of musical harmony.


Our lasting memories of the voyage are of sun rises and sun sets at sea, with no light pollution to interfere with the spectacle, and Lester our Watch Leader playing Amazing Grace on his bag pipes half way up the mast  into Newcastle.  It was a fitting end to a fantastic voyage.


The brochure was accurate in its description of how the voyage would affect each and every one of us.  You get out of the voyage what you put into it and for most people that is total commitment to their watch and the ship.  This bond was fostered in just seven days as a result of living and working together in a confined space but with the same goals in mind – a safe, happy and successful voyage with great memories that will last a lifetime!


If you are 16-25 and you live in the North East, your local branch may be able to help with funds towards a voyage. 

For more information, or to apply for a voyage, please contact:

The Northumbria Branch, Tall Ships Youth Trust, PO Box 658, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE3 1FQ, or telephone 0191 284 1298.










The aim of the Ellen MacArthur Trust is to support children suffering from cancer or leukaemia by introducing them to the pleasure of sailing on the sea.  The 'Trust' is a charity and as such may invite tax exempt contributions for the objects stated.  Likewise, donations are tax deductible.  This RYA operate a similar scheme know as 'Sailability' for disabled persons.  The Ellen MacArthur Trust was launched by Dame Ellen MacArthur on 2nd January 2003.  The main objects of the Trust are: "
To alleviate the suffering and promote the well-being of children and young persons between the ages of 6 and 18 suffering from cancer, leukaemia or other serious illness by providing facilities for sailing holidays."



It all began in the summer of 2000 before the start of the Vendée Globe round-the-world race.  Ellen went sailing in France with a group of children suffering from cancer and leukaemia. These trips were organised by a French charity called ‘A Chacun son Cap’, which translates to “Everyone has a Goal’.  Dame Ellen noticed how the children has so enjoyed the day.  There was so much laughter.  Dame Ellen said it was one of the best day’s sailing she'd ever had.  She is quoted as saying: “We laughed so much we had tears in our eyes.”  Ellen worked with 'A Chacun son Cap' and also 'Sargent Cancer Care' for a couple of years.  'The Ellen MacArthur Trust', is a registered charity, number 1096491.

Ellen and kids at helm

Ellen MacArthur and crew


The main activity of the Trust involves taking affected children between the ages of 6 and 18 for sea outings.  These short voyages may last several days and nights, visiting as many different ports as possible, during which time the guests and crew live and sleep on board.  By this means it is hoped the children get a taste of adventure and a feel of life on the ocean wave. The boats used during the 2004 season were larger cruising yachts, being ideal accommodation for these events.

As with the RYA sailability scheme, the sport of sailing gives these children the chance to try their hand at something exciting and different.  It is a hands on adventure where each child is offered the chance to participate and it is hoped gains that much more confidence.


ELLEN SAYS:  "Meeting the challenge of sailing at sea, the children gain confidence and are reminded that there is life beyond their illness. At the same time they meet friends suffering from the same disease, which reminds them they are not alone in their struggle."





Various: 38ft to 45ft cruising yachts


Several days


12 - 16 approx


Mixed, at least three adults to five children


+44 (0)1803 732 094


Frank Fletcher











Any young person can sail with one of the ASTO organisations below and please note that physical disability is not a barrier to sailing, since there are boats especially designed for this purpose. You don't need previous sailing experience.  All the operators listed below provide experienced and qualified sail skippers. 




Ellen MacArthur and crew












Adventures Offshore

Ocean Scout
Offshore Scout

49ft ketches

2 - 21 days


Carolina House Trust




12 - 25

Cirdan Sailing Trust

Queen Galadriel
Hartlepool Renaissance

100ft gaff ketch
86ft sailing barge
72ft gaff yawl
72ft ketch

Weekend - 2 weeks


Clyde Sail Training Trust

East End Endeavour

41ft bermudan sloop

1, 2, 5 & 7 days

10 - 25

Dauntsey's School

Jolie Brise

76ft gaff cutter

5 - 14 days

14 - 18

Discovery Sailing Project


43ft seastream cutter
Westerly Centaur

2 - 7 days


physically disadvantagedEast Coast Sail Trust


91ft spritsail barge

5 days

9 - 16

Eleanor Mary

Eleanor Mary

70ft gaff cutter

5 – 21 days

16 – 25

physically disadvantagedEllen MacArthur Trust


38ft to 45ft cruising yachts

Several days

12 – 16 approx

Excelsior Trust


77ft gaff ketch

1 - 10 days

16 - 80+


Spirit of Fairbridge

92ft gaff schooner

5 - 8 days

12 - 25

Gordonstoun School

Ocean Spirit of Moray

80ft ketch

4, 7, 10 & 21 days

16 - 80+

physically disadvantagedGuernsey Sailing Trust


16m Bermudan Cutter

up to 5 days

From 14 years

physically disadvantagedIsland Trust




10 - 18

physically disadvantagedJubilee Sailing Trust

Lord Nelson

180ft barque
213ft barque

4 - 14 days


physically disadvantagedLondon Sailing Project

Rona II
Donald Searle
Helen Mary R

68ft ketch
75ft ketch
58ft ketch

6 days+

14 - 25

Mayflower Sail Training Society

Kenya Jacaranda

77ft gaff ketch

1 day - 1 week


physically disadvantagedMeridian Trust Association

Langhorn Adventurer
Alexander Fairey
Lively Lady

45ft Nicholson
72ft Ketch
38ft Jeanneau

1, 5 & 14 days

13 - 25

Morning Star Trust

Morning Star of Revelation

62ft gaff ketch
Sigma 362 Bermudan sloop

1 day - 1 week &
2 - 3 weeks Small/Tall Ships


Ocean Youth Trust NE

James Cook

70ft ketch

2 - 13 nights

12 - 24

Ocean Youth Trust NI

Lord Rank

68ft ketch

2 - 7 days

12 - 25

Ocean Youth Trust NW

Gt Manchester Challenge

76ft gaff ketch

3 - 6 days

12 - 24

physically disadvantagedOcean Youth Trust Scotland

Alba Venturer
Alba Volunteer

70ft ketch
43ft sloop

2, 5 & 7 days


Ocean Youth Trust South

John Laing

72ft ketch

2 - 7 nights

12 - 25

physically disadvantagedRYA Sailability



Regular sailing opportunities
throughout the year


Sail Training International





Sea Cadets

TS Royalist
TS John Jerwood
TS Leopold Muller
TS City Liveryman
TS Vigilant

100ft brig
78ft Motor Ship
35ft cutters

2+ nights

12 - 18

physically disadvantagedSwan Trust


67ft gaff ketch

1 - 14 days


Tall Ships Youth Trust
(incorporating STA)

Stavros S Niarchos
Prince William

195ft brigs

14 nights

16 - 25

physically disadvantagedTrinity Sailing Foundation

Golden Vanity

70ft Brixham sailing trawler

1 - 12+ days

12 - 70+

UKSA/Gipsy Moth IV

Gipsy Moth IV

16m ketch

Circumnavigation until 2007 then short training voyages


Westward Quest


12m Bermudan ketch
13m Bermudan sloop


15 to 25












STA / Tall Ship Youth Trust Sites
Tall Ship Race Site
Tallship Forum
Local Area Sites
Tallship Dedicated Sites
Link Directory Sites



Tall Ships Youth Trust
Official web page of the Tall Ships Youth Trust :

American Sail Training Association
Web page of the American STA :
Another very good site. Well worth a visit.




Tall Ships Race
Web page of the European Tall Ships Races :
An informative web page on the European Tall Ships races.



Tall Ship Forum
Web page bulletin board dedicated to Tallships :
A very good site with plenty of information. Join and enjoy.

Tallship Forum sister web page
Web page written by the forum author above :
Some very good advice and links.


Local Area Sites

Glenlee, The Tall Ship At Glasgow Harbour
Web page of a static Tall Ship :
The Glenlee which offers educational visits plus conference and function facilities in Glasgow.


Argyll Organisation
Web page of a local community :
Local community web page with information on hotels, local services, crafts, restuarants, interest groups, properties and events etc.




Jubilee Sailing Trust
Web page of the Jubilee Trust which runs Tall Ships for the disabled :
An excellent trust doing great work. Well worth a visit.


Mark Rosenstein Web page
Web page with a huge collection of links to sailing and Tall Ship sites :
Well worth a visit if searching.


Australia - The Bark Endeavour
Site dedicated to the recreated ship used by Cpt. Cook. Sail training in Australia :


Australia - The Duyfken
Site dedicated to the recreation of the first European ship to visit Australian shores :


Australia - The James Craig
Site dedicated to the James Craig :


Australia - Leeuwin Ocean Adventure
Sail training in Australia :


Australia - Young Endeavour Youth Scheme
Sail training organisation in Australia :


Canada - Bluenose II
Preservation trust for the Bluenose II, Novia Scotia, Canada :
Worth a visit.


Canada - Bytown Brigantine Inc
Non profit sail training organisation in Canada :
Worth a visit. STV Fair Jeanne and Black Jack.


Canada - S.V. Concordia
Canadian vessel offering sail training and semester teaching at sea :


Canada - Society for Preservation of HMS Bounty
Group dedicated to saving this tall ship :
HMS Bounty built by MGM for Marlon Brando's "Mutiny on the Bounty" film.


France - Belem
Sail training organisation in France :


Holland - The Bark Europa
Sail training in Holland :


Holland - Rotterdam Sailing Ship Foundation
Sail training in Holland with the Oosterschelde and Helena :


Ireland - Asgard II
Sail training in Ireland with the Asgard II :


Japan - Akogare
Sail training in Japan with the Akogare :


New Zealand - Soren Larsen
Sail training organisation in New Zealand :


Sweden - Swedish East India Company
Site dedicated to the building of a all wooden East Indian Trading Ship :
Launches in 2002 and travels to China.


UK - ASTO - Association of Sea Training Organisations
Umbrella organisation covering 20 UK trust / organisations :
A good starting place for UK tallship searches.


UK - Chris Brady
Web page dedicated to Tallships :
Tall Ship page with information on Sail Training Associations, Booking Agents, Tall Ship Forums etc.


UK - Cutty Sark, Thames
Site dedicated to the original Cutty Sark, now anchored on the Thames :


UK - Eda Frandsen, Mallaig, Scotland
Web page for the 60ft classic cutter, Eda Frandsen :


UK - Glenlee, The Tall Ship At Glasgow Harbour
Web page of a static Tall Ship :
The Glenlee which offers educational visits plus conference and function facilities in Glasgow.


UK - Grand Turk
Web page of a recreated, Nelson era ship :
The Grand Turk is based in London and offers an on-board exhibition and is available for charters.


UK - Golden Hinde
Web page of the reconstructed Golden Hinde :
Living History Museum in London.


UK - Gordonstoun's Ocean Spirit of Moray
Web page of the Gordonstoun School and it's ship :


UK - Jolie Brise, International Sailing Craft Association
Web page of gaff rigged pilot cutter, Jolie Brise :


UK - Juan De La Lune
Web page of the only Scottish based square rigged tallship :
Sail training and cruising.


UK - LSP London Sailing Project
Web page of sail training on the yacht Rona II :


UK - The Mary Rose
Web page of the salvaged 16th century Tudor warship
Excellent web page with plenty of information. The only 16th century ship on display anywhere in the world.


UK - Morning Star Trust
Web page of sail training on the Morning Star and Eagles Wings :


USA - American Pride
Sail training organisation in Califronia, USA :


USA - Tall Ship Bounty
Non profit sailing on HMS Bounty :
Sail the HMS Bounty built by MGM for Marlon Brando's "Mutiny on the Bounty" film.


USA - Clearwater, The Hudson River Sloop
Sail and environment education organisation in USA :


USA - The Schooner Ernestia
Sail and education organisation in USA :


USA - Gazela, Philadelphia's Tall Ship
Sail training and education organisation in USA :


USA - Harvey Gamage
Sail training and semester teaching at sea :


USA - Lady Washington
Sail training organisation in USA :


USA - Lettie Howard
Web page of the South Street Seaport Museum which covers the Lettie Howard :


USA - Niagara
Web page of the brig Niagara :


USA - The Northwest Schooner Society
Sailing schooners on the west coast of the USA :


USA - Picton Castle
Sail training on the square rigged barque, Picton Castle :


USA - Pride of Baltimore
Sail training on a topsail schooner, Pride of Baltimore :


USA - Schooner Man
Site giving information on many ships :


USA - Travel With The Rose
The all wooden HMS Rose :
An all wooden recreation of a 18th Century British warship. Star of the 'Master and Commander' film under the name of 'HMS Surprise'.


USA - Sea Education Association
Sea Education Association :


USA - Tree of life
Web page of the private gaff schooner :
Presently up for sale.


Link Directory Sites


UK Sailing Index
A good general directory site with lots of links :
A directory site with a wide range of links.


Sailing Links - Promoting Sailing
A directory site with a wide range of links.




Met Office - UK - General Site - UK Offshore Forecast - UK Inshore Forecast - UK Gale Warnings


BBC Online Weather - Mainly UK + World
A very good site with good information.





Duke of Edinburgh Award
Web page dedicated to the Duke Of Edinburgh Award :
Programme of personal developments for the 14 to 25 year age group.


RYA, Royal Yachting Association
Web page dedicated this worthy organisation :
Organisation which sets out to promote, maintain and award various levels of competence.


RNLI Main Site
Web page of the Lifeboat Institute :
A very good page with plenty of information on their work, people, locations etc.


Publication : Tall Ship International
Web page of the sailing magazine :


Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society
Global voice for the protection of whales, dolphins and their environment :


The Marine Conservation Society
Leading environmental charity dedicated to protecting the environment we enjoy :


Jack Adamson - Marine Artist Master Mariner
Website dedicated to the work of Jack Adamson, painter and master mariner :




National Maritime Museum, UK

National Maritime Museum web page :
Plenty of information on this attraction at Greenwich Park, London.



UK - Glenlee, The Tall Ship At Glasgow Harbour

Web page of a static Tall Ship :
The Glenlee which offers educational visits plus conference and function facilities in Glasgow.



UK - Golden Hinde

Web page of the reconstructed Golden Hinde :
Living History Museum in London.



UK - The Mary Rose

Web page of the salvaged 16th century Tudor warship :
Excellent web page with plenty of information. The only 16th century ship on display anywhere in the world.



UK - SS Great Britain

Web page of the first propeller iron ship to cross the Atlantic :   Preserved at Bristol, UK.


Commercial Boats For Sale

Comprehensive site for marine related products and services :

Dinghy Trader

Web site of the Dinghy Trader Magazine :
Web site contains information on events, schools, clubs, races, chandlers etc.






Ellen MacArthur began her world solo record attempt Sun 28 Nov 04 @ 07:10











Solar Cola - the healthier cola drink.





This website is Copyright © 1999 & 2006  NJK.   The bird logo and name Solar Navigator are trademarks. All rights reserved.  All other trademarks are hereby acknowledged.       Max Energy Limited is an environmental educational charity.