The Island Trust

Enabling young people to get out on the water since 1973, reg. charity no. 1049722

Group Sailing Weeks

Youth Groups, Schools and Colleges | Private Groups | Corporate Team Building


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Ocean Discoverability

Day sails supporting young people from special needs schools and day centres in Plymouth, Devon and Cornwall.

The Island Trust Fleet

The Island Trust operates three large, traditionally-rigged sailing vessels.

Adventures at Sea

RYA Training and Duke of Edinburgh’s Gold Residential experiences for independent teenagers

Sail Training

Skill |Challenge | Adventure | Confidence | Communication

Small Ships Races

An exciting, challenging, and inspiring sailing adventure…

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Over 40 years of life-changing sailing adventures!

We are a registered charity providing life-enhancing, residential and day sailing activities for young people with special needs, disabilities, and those experiencing hardship and deprivation.

To support our charitable work we run sail training voyages for independent individuals aged 13 to 19 years during the school holidays, a number of RYA Competent Crew, Day Skipper Practical, Yachtmaster Preparation & Exam courses for all ages throughout the sailing season, and occasional voyages for adults.

Schools & Groups

We offer sailing expeditions and day sails for youth groups, schools and colleges, tailored specifically to the needs of the group.

Teenage Sailing Weeks

Sail training voyages for independent teenagers during school holidays – have a great time, learn new skills and make new friends!

DofE & RYA Training

Come on board for your DofE Expedition or DofE Gold Residential, or embark on one of our RYA sail training courses.

Adult Voyages/Courses

We run adult RYA courses and occasional passage and expedition voyages throughout the sailing season.

Teachers/Youth Leaders

Find out more about what we do on one of our free taster day sails for teachers and youth leaders.


Our traditional vessels are perfectly suited to corporate and private hire for groups seeking a team experience.

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Fancy a trip on the tall ship Johanna Lucretia? Visit for more information but act fast as there are on eleven spaces!


Heading to the coast this weekend? Be a citizen scientist! Make a note of the shoreline wildlife you spot and record it on our website. Our spotting guide will help: #NationalMarineWeek

Take part in our #GreatBritishBeachClean between 18 - 25 September to help our vital research & protect the UK’s wildlife from pollution. Not sure where to start? We've got all the info on how to organise your own friends and family #beachclean here 👍

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1 week ago

The Island Trust

Don’t forget at 1200 UTC today (1300 British Summer Time) the final leg of the online Tall Ships Races begins - you can log in and set your course and speed in the hour running up to it if you can’t get online for the very beginning.

There was a good representation from the UK Sail Training fleet in the last two races, and it would be great to see some more Island Trust racers in the final event! If you’ve ever wondered what decisions need to be made to get a tall ship from the start line to the finish against a fleet from all over the world, now is your chance to have a go without risking getting a wave splashing in your coffee ☕️ or needing to hug a bucket 🤢
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Our Fleet

The Island Trust operates three large traditionally rigged sailing boats; Moosk, Pegasus and Johanna Lucretia, each has her own distinctive style and character, all perfect for Sail Training.


Gaff Yawl


Gaff Rigged Pilot Cutter

Johanna Lucretia

Topsail Schooner

Sail Training

Based in Plymouth, Devon, The Island Trust provides flexible personal development programmes for young people on board its fleet of traditionally rigged sailing vessels. Encouraging independence, team work, communication, self worth and life skills; sailing provides an exciting and challenging adventure.

Courses range from group sailing weeks and day sails, to teenage sailing weeks for independent individuals, DofE Gold Residentials, DofE Silver and Gold Expeditions, RYA practical courses, Tall Ships Races and the annual ’round-the-cans’ Cowes Small Ships Races youth sailing events.

The Island Trust is a registered charity (no. 1049722) committed to providing sailing for everyone and will accept applications from young people for financial assistance to meet the costs of a voyage.

Click here to read more about us.

What We Do

RYA Recognised Training Centre

Crewed by professional sailing staff, qualified at the highest level, all of our vessels have been coded by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency and inspected for seaworthiness and safety.

The Island Trust and its operating company, Island (Cutter) Ltd, have robust policies and procedures in place to guarantee your safety on board including:

  • Health and Safety Policies
  • Child Protection Policies
  • Annual DBS Disclosure for all staff and volunteers

We are members of the Association of Sail Training Organisations (ASTO).

Full time and relief skippers are RYA Yachtmasters and Cruising Instructors or higher, and mates and volunteers are qualified to levels appropriate to the responsibilities they carry in accordance with statutory MCA and RYA regulations and guidelines.

For more information about RYA training »

DofE Approved Activity Provider

We are a Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Approved Activity Provider and run DofE Gold Residential sailing weeks for individuals and DofE Silver and Gold Expedition voyages. Voyages follow the RYA Cruising syllabus and our experienced and well qualified staff will help participants gain RYA as well as DofE qualifications.

Foe more information visit our DofE Gold Residential and DofE Expedition pages.

What is Sail Training?

Our voyages take you to different places every day, tiny harbours, beautiful rivers and the stunning Cornish and Devon coastlines. On a really good week, we may to sail out to the Isles of Scilly, Brittany or the Channel Islands. We sail where the wind takes us, and regularly spot dolphins, sun fish, basking sharks, seals and even pilot whales! Beach barbecues, fishing and swimming are all part of the fun.

Our sailing weeks mix high quality tuition with a fun, educational environment where everyone works and lives as a crew. RYA (Royal Yachting Association) certificates and Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Gold Residential can be attained on board, as well as DofE Silver and Gold Expeditions.

Participants learn how to helm, use a compass, use charts and basic navigational skills to plan passages, raise and lower sails, tie knots and cook. Standard voyages start in the afternoon on Sunday and end at lunchtime on Friday. Our full time and relief skippers are RYA Yachtmasters and Cruising Instructors or higher, and mates and volunteers are qualified to levels appropriate to the responsibilities they carry in accordance with statutory MCA and RYA regulations and guidelines, and are subject to annual enhanced DBS disclosure.

As a charity we help the visually and hearing impaired, those with learning difficulties, special educational needs or behavioural difficulties, and any young person for whom the experience of sailing might otherwise be unattainable. We help hundreds of young people every year, from all backgrounds, to get out on the water and experience the adventure and freedom of a voyage at sea.

For more information call us on 01752 823007 or email