We are the UK’s oldest and largest youth development sail training charity. More than 120,000 trainees have sailed over two million nautical miles with us since we first set sail in 1956.

We continue to dedicate ourselves to enabling young people, aged 12 to 25, to fulfil their life potential through transformational adventures at sea.

Challengers Today

Our aims remain the same — to support the personal development of young people from all walks of life through the crewing of ocean-going vessels. Our four Challenger and ketch vessels sail all-year-round offering a variety of adventures, from youth voyages to day sails and challenging residentials for all ages. To meet the ever-increasing demand to help those young people hardest hit by the pandemic, our focus is on growing our sea-going capacity via the purchase and refit of an additional large sailing yacht. Watch this space!


Goodbye Tall Ships Cat

After 11 years, 107 days at sea and numerous DofE Gold Award expeditions it was time to say goodbye to the Tall Ships Cat.


Goodbye Stavros

We waved goodbye to the Brig, Stavros S. Niarchos to improve our financial stability and focus on supporting as many young people as possible with our fleet.

ketch 2014

Tall Ships Ketch

Tenacity of Bolton, a 55ft Ketch, was built by Bolton School pupils and gifted to us to provide the perfect sail training environment for young people.

Cat Photo Cropped 2009

Tall Ships Cat

A very generous benefactor donated the Tall Ships Cat, a 62ft Catamaran. This allowed us to reduce the lower age limit to 12 and offer more opportunities for people with disabilities to come along.

Displays four Challengers 2008


We said a fond farewell to Prince William and welcomed four 72ft Challenger yachts — famous for having raced round the world as part of the Global Challenge races in 2000/2001 and 2004/2005. This enabled us to diversify, attract new audiences and expand our work with young people.

TSYT Portrait Logo Blue Square 2003

Tall Ships Youth Trust

At an AGM on 1st August 2003, members of the Sail Training Association voted overwhelmingly to adopt a new name for the charity — Tall Ships Youth Trust. It was agreed the new name would best describe our charity’s work and help us to raise more funds as a result.

Our heritage 2001

The second Brig

Having waved goodbye to the Schooners the year before, we celebrated their long and valuable service at a huge ‘Farewell to the Schooners’ party. Later in the year, a second Brig was commissioned and the name ‘Prince William’ was announced as she sailed up the Thames on St George’s day before arriving in London for her first reception.

Stavros Niarchos 2000

Schooners leave and make way for the Brigs

We said goodbye to the Sir Winston Churchill and Malcolm Miller as they completed their final voyage with the Trust. Due to the success of the Schooners, two new Brigs were commissioned and at the turn of the millennium, one arrived in the shape of the 60-metre Stavros S. Niarchos.

1968 - 2000

The Schooners at sea

The two Schooners sailed the globe offering thousands of young people the experience of a lifetime and attracting admiring glances from ports near and far, supporting more than 40,000 young people.

MM 1968

The Malcolm Miller: the second Schooner

The Malcolm Miller, Sir Winston Churchill’s sister ship, was launched after the Daily Express led a national campaign to raise the funds needed to build her.

Sir Winston Churchill 1966

The Sir Winston Churchill: The first Schooner

The Sir Winston Churchill, a 37-metre schooner, was launched after a group of young people sailed across the Atlantic as part of the Tall Ships Race and were determined Great Britain should have their own Tall Ship!


It all began!

Tall Ships Youth Trust (then called the Sail Training Association) was founded to run the Tall Ships Races.