A refitted ‘Maiden’ will embark on a three-year global voyage to promote and fundraise for girls’ education.
Best known for competing in the Whitbread Round the World Race in 1989/1990, skippered by Tracy Edwards MBE with the race’s first ever all-female crew, the yacht Maiden will begin its tour this summer with Ms Edwards at the helm and men on board as part of the ‘guest’ crew.
“We believe that now is the time for men and women to join forces and work together to combat inequality in all walks of life,” said Ms Edwards. “There are so many men and women who want to help us break down barriers that stop girls getting to school and raising funds for girls’ education is such a positive message in today’s climate.”
With 30 stopovers in 18 countries, Maiden will promote and raise money for education for girls worldwide, while ‘guest’ crew places for sale will generate funds for The Maiden Factor Foundation, founded by Ms Edwards, which works with charities focusing on girls’ education initiatives.
The first stopover of the world tour will be Aqaba in Jordan, in honour of HM the Late King Hussein of Jordan, who believed in Ms Edwards and told her that “with faith, honour and courage anything is possible” when she was struggling to get to the start of the line of the Whitbread Race.
HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, HM King Hussein’s daughter, is carrying on the support by facilitating Maiden’s trip.
After Maiden was rescued from the Seychelles where it had been neglected, it returned to the UK in April 2017. Here it was stripped and had it hull shotblasted and primer added to prevent the aluminium from oxidising in the air.
In August, the worst affected areas of the aluminium were cut out and new ones fixed in place and welded. In November, the aluminium work continued to finish the bulkheads, chain plates and P-bracket.
In December, the core aluminium jobs were finished, which allowed the painting team to prep, fill and fair and spray the topsides with primer. This January, the hull below the waterline and the transom were completed.
Work is expected to begin shortly on the installation of non-structural bulkheads and equipment.