A NEWLY-formed social enterprise company based on wooden boatbuilding and sailing has launched a £40k fundraising effort for a flagship boat.

The Quay Pilot Project was started by teachers and amateur sailors Anthony Reid and Simon Bradbury just a matter of weeks ago.

Working with The Quay Foyer supported housing project, which provides accommodation, personal support and access to training for 16 to 25-year-olds in Poole, the project aims to improve the life-chances and skills of young people with training in sailing and traditional boat-building and restoration skills.

Such experiences Anthony hopes will be “both enriching personally and provide a direction for them in terms of career prospects.”

Their first aim is to buy a sailing boat – and they have in their sights the 35ft Poole Pilot Cutter ‘Reprieve’, built at Newman’s Yard in the town more than 100 years ago. They hope to ‘bring her home’ to Poole for £40,000 – but only £10k has been secured so far.

They are also bidding for lottery funding to create a workshop in the town where people can learn practical boat-related employability skills.

“We’re bringing the two together,” added Anthony. “We want to help the traditions of Poole work for the benefit of the young people in the town.”

Eventually they will make Reprieve available for charter and provide training to other people – ploughing back the profits a bid to make the project self-sustaining in three years’.

In the meantime they are hoping the community will get behind their efforts and help the Quay Pilot Project set sail.

Anthony, who led a model boat building workshop for children in Poole Park on Friday, added: “What we’d like is for businesses and individuals who can support the objectives of the project to get in touch. And we’re also looking for professional skippers who would like to be involved.”

Contact the project on enquiries@quaypilot.org