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Single-handed voyage from Norway to Ireland halted by damage in Scotland

by Iain Vellacott 27 Jan 09:18 UTC
Darragh Carroll is trying to sail single-handedly from Norway back to Ireland © Iain Vellacott

In a wonderfully brave (and beautifully mad) adventure, a young Irish chef, Darragh Carroll, set himself the task of carrying a flame of fire from the Island of Tomoya in Norway to an ancient ceremonial site called the Hill of Uisneach in the centre of Ireland in a 30ft traditional Norwegian sailing boat.

At the heart of the journey is an environmental message: having seen how the animals, birds and berries of Tromoya work in harmony with the environment the 25-year old chef wanted to take something back to his homeland that would "radiate and symbolise light, fertility and growth" in a land that he feels has been stripped of much of its nature and nutrients.

Darragh set off from Norway along the old Viking trail on 15th November, single-handed, originally hoping to be home for Christmas but a mixture of bad weather and the need to regularly patch up the boat have stretched out his journey.

When he finally made it to the north west tip of Scotland last week Storm Brendan and strong tides made it impossible for him to get around Cape Wrath and he ended up being carried by the current to Loch Erribol where he was forced to abandon ship when it began taking on too much water and eventually capsized.

With the help of some marvellous local people, he has managed to right the boat but the hull has sustained quite a bit of damage and there was significant flooding of the engine, pumps and diesel tanks.

Darragh has set up a crowdfunding page to try to raise the money he needs to repair the boat, buy more fuel and continue his voyage but so far he has only managed to raise about 700 Euros out of the 2,500 Euros that he needs.

If you can help, see www.gofundme.com/f/aid-me-in-completing-my-expedition-from-nor-to-ire

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