Isle of Man News - POSTED Mon 14-07-2014

Dragon ship to visit Peel

by Joanne Clague

Dragon ship to visit Peel - picture

The world's largest viking ship - the Dragon Harald Fairhair - is steering a course to the Isle of Man.

The biggest ship ever to be built in modern times, it is due to arrive in Peel at about 2pm tomorrow.

It's named after Harald Fairhair, the Viking King who unified Norway into one kingdom. The 30-strong crew are on the voyage of a lifetime sailing from Norway to Liverpool and have already had dramatic Viking-style adventures.

A spokesman for Manx National Heritage said: 'During the crossing on the North Sea the large mast snapped and went overboard,luckily none of the crew were hurt. Captain Björn Ahlander made the decision to continue the trip without a sail and
with a slightly altered route through the Caledonian Canal.

'This is the ships first major voyage since it was built in 2012, and the crew are on a massive learning curve. The ship is 114 feet of crafted oak with a 3,200 square foot sail of pure silk. It is a voyage that the Vikings would have known well and indeed a similar voyage to that achieved by the crew of Odin’s Raven, the replica Viking longship now housed in the House of Manannan which was sailed to the Island from Norway in 1979.

'Isle of Man Harbours are kindly allowing this magnificent ship to moor in Peel Harbour in the shadow of the Islands spectacular Peel Castle, where the crew will be welcomed at both Peel Castle and the House of Manannan.'

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