Guip Shipyard will be celebrating ships listed on France’s register of historic vessels during Brest 2016, Brittany’s forthcoming festival of the sea.

It is Guip’s way of paying tribute to the Sailing Trusts and the Regional Departments for Culture (DRAC) which for the last three decades has endeavoured to save and preserve traditional craft on the same footing as heritage buildings and sites.

Since 1982 a total of 140 boats have been rescued and 117 now appear on France’s register of historic vessels. Over twenty of them will sail to Brest in July for the festival.

Throughout festival in the Port of Brest numerous historic craft will be tying up in Dock No. 1 alongside Guip Shipyard, such as the coasters Notre-Dame de Rumengol, L’Audiernais and Fée de l’Aulne, the Brest scallop boats Bergère de Domrémy, Général Leclerc and Saint-Guénolé, and the pilot cutter Marie-Fernand. Guip’s shipwrights know the ships well because many of them have benefited from their expertise.

Guip Shipyard will be opening to the public during Brest 2016 and in particular the workshop where the public can enjoy an exhibition on the restoration of several ships, such as the classic all-weather lifeboat Patron François Morin.

The presentation of the shipyard’s work uses photos, videos and technical information to explain the often complex operation of restoring a traditional boat. Aviso schooner La Recouvrance also features in the exhibition, including the story of her construction at the yard.

Several boats awaiting restoration will be displayed on the quay in front of the yard, with representatives of the sailing trust responsible for them in attendance. Among them two boats which were built in very different locations and for very different purposes but, by coincidence, launched in the very same year: 1950.

The first of these is Tarzan, a magnificent settee schooner (similar to a lateen rig) built in Sfax, Tunisia, for the sponge-fishing trade. The other, Fleur de mai, came from the Jacq Shipyard of L’Hôpital-Camfrout, Brittany, and was a coaster designed for carrying sand. Both are going to be restored by Guip.

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