Crew from the legendary yacht Maiden visited St Swithun’s Prep School in Winchester at the start of their two-year world tour to promote equality in global education.
Maiden made history in 1990 with the first all-female crew to sail in the Whitbread round the world yacht race. Original crew member Jo Gooding visited St Swithun’s together with new skipper Nikki Henderson who is the youngest skipper ever to complete the Clipper Round-the-World yacht race.
Maiden’s tour, in support of the charity The Maiden Factor, will cover over 54,000 miles and include 23 stopovers in 13 countries. Pupils from St Swithun’s added to what will become a rainbow spiral of children’s handprints on one of Maiden’s 260sqm spinnaker sails. They also wrote messages of hope that will be carried on board as part of a collection from children at each stopover on the journey.
The patron of The Maiden Factor, HRH Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein is the daughter of the King of Jordan, who funded Maiden’s original 1990 round-the-world challenge. The charity’s vision is to remove the barriers to girls’ education around the world.
Kate Grosscurth, deputy head of St Swithun’s Prep School said ‘We are so pleased and inspired to be working with this charity and to follow the incredible journey of these amazing women around the world. They demonstrate the grit, gratitude and generosity which are an important part of our school culture and it is very appropriate that they visited us on the United Nations International Day of the Girl’.