Earl of Pembroke Makes a Splash To Help Young People In Pembrokeshire

By Megan Tapper Earl of Pembroke ship

Raise the main sail! A group of young people from Pembrokeshire have experienced a once in a lifetime opportunity, sailing on a replica of Captain Cook’s tall ship and taking part in marine biology research off the coast.

Pembrokeshire’s Darwin Centre, in conjunction with the Bluestone Foundation, took the group of 15 youngsters on board the Earl of Pembroke tall ship, currently moored at Milford Marina as part of the Seafair Haven 2014 festival.

The three-masted ship is a replica of HMS Endeavour, the ship that Captain Cook took on his first voyage to Australia.

The day-long experience saw the young people taken out to sea on the vessel, taking samples of marine life with the Dale Fort Field Studies Centre, before returning to land to investigate the samples.

On board Earl of Pembroke ship

“The day was about giving a group of disadvantaged young people from Pembrokeshire the opportunity to experience something they would otherwise not have the chance to do,” said Marten Lewis, Manager of the Darwin Centre.

“It’s an aspirational experience that will hopefully guide them into new interests and opportunities in education or employment.”

The experience was supported by the Bluestone Foundation, a charitable arm of Bluestone National Park Resort, a  luxury short break destination near Narberth, set up to help people to help themselves through environmental, economic and social projects in Pembrokeshire.

ITV Wales was also filming the day as part of its forthcoming Coast and Country series.

Daniel Freeman, 21 from Milford Haven, one of the young people who was part of the experience, said: “I’d love a career working with boats and ships, so I really enjoyed the day. We were all getting involved; dragging the nets and gathering the samples. It was good fun.”

Melissa Murphy, 19, from Fishguard, said: “As a former sea cadet, I enjoyed getting back out onto the water - especially in such a spectacular ship. I’ve never studied any sort of marine biology before, I found it really interesting to look at the samples under the microscope.”

Liz Weedon of Bluestone National Park Resort and who oversees the Bluestone Foundation, said:  “The Earl of Pembroke experience will hopefully provide these young people, who are not in education, training or employment, with some inspiration to help them in their lives.”

“Heading off to sea on a tall ship and then being involved in environmental research is a rare opportunity for most people and we hope the experience will develop their interests and abilities.”

The Darwin Centre, which is also supported by Dragon LNG, has also received support from the Bluestone Foundation to undertake a number of educational activities in conjunction with Pembrokeshire Fish Week 2014.

David Lort-Phillips, co-founder of Darwin Experience, Wales, said:

“Contributions such as this one from the Bluestone Foundation are vital. We’d love to be able to do a lot more of these experiences in the future, all over the world.”

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Notes to the editor

The Bluestone Foundation was established to help people to help themselves through environmental, economic and social projects in Pembrokeshire through the provision of grants.

The Foundation is a charitable arm Bluestone National Park Resort and underpins the business’s ethos as a sustainable, local business providing employment, economic and social opportunities to the people of West Wales.

For more information, visit www.bluestonewales.com/foundation

Categories:Pembrokeshire, Events and Whats On