My Weekend: I was only a few weeks old when I had my first outing on Cork Harbour

The world’s oldest yacht club hoists sails again for tricentenary events. Colin Morehead is Admiral of the Royal Cork Yacht Club, which celebrates its 300th birthday this year, and chair of the Cork 300 events series. He is also branch manager at AIB Cobh
My Weekend: I was only a few weeks old when I had my first outing on Cork Harbour
Colin Morehead of Cork300 with Minister Simon Coveney.

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

Born in Cork, I grew up on the Marina in Blackrock with my parents and two brothers. I moved to Dublin in 1988 to take up a position with AIB and have been working with them ever since.

Whilst on assignment with AIB overseas in Jersey I met my wife Irene, a Clare woman. Our son Robert was born while we lived in the Isle of Man and our daughter Katie was born after we returned to Cork having spent 12 years on various international assignments with the Bank.

I am told that I was only a few weeks old when I had my first outing on Cork Harbour.

While I have no recollection of this event, it certainly stamped its DNA into my very fibre and created a love for sailing and of Cork Harbour, which I have had now for more than 50 years.

However, it’s fair to say that sailing is in my blood and both my mother and father’s families were heavily involved in boating of one shape or another.

I was therefore delighted to take up the position as Admiral of the Royal Cork Yacht Club this year, in what is the most significant year for the Club in our lifetime.

The Royal Cork, which is celebrating its 300th birthday, is the oldest yacht club in the world, which is an incredible feat. To mark the occasion, we had planned a phenomenal series of events across Cork Harbour this summer, under the umbrella title Cork300, which I’m Chairman of.

As you can imagine, a lot of weekends over the past year or two were spent on this. Unfortunately, we had to cancel many of the larger high profile international events, such as The Great Gathering, the Powerboat Festival, and Volvo Cork Week, which were set to attract thousands of sailors and competitors from around the globe, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Colin Morehead of Cork300.
Colin Morehead of Cork300.

However, I’m delighted to say that a number of events have now been rescheduled to take place from this month following the publication of the Government Road Map for reopening society.

I’m really looking forward to events like the Tricentenary Regatta, the Maritime Parade in Cork Harbour, a RCYC Exhibition at the Sirius Arts Centre, a Family Race to and from Cork city, and several National Championship races.

My day job is branch manager of AIB in Cobh, so I’m delighted some of the events are taking place there. In fact, Cobh was the original home of the Royal Cork Yacht Club.

AIB has also been incredibly supportive – they are the main sponsors for the events series and it wouldn’t have been possible for me to take on such a demanding voluntary role without the huge level of time and support that I was granted.

What is your ideal way to spend a Friday night?

If I finish work on time, I’ll head over to the club in Crosshaven and go racing with some family and friends…. After which we might enjoy a bite to eat and a drink at the clubhouse.

Lie-ins or up with the lark.. which is it for you?

Up with the lark for me…..I love getting up early, the house is normally quiet and I get a chance to catch up on paper work, read the newspaper or just listen to the radio.

Does work creep into your weekend at all?

Work doesn’t really creep into my weekend, but my voluntary roles as Admiral of the Royal Cork Yacht Club and Chair of Cork300 takes up a lot of time – I’m lucky I have a very patient wife.

If money was no object where would you head to on a weekend city break? And who would you bring with you?

New York. We went there on our honeymoon many years ago. It was our first time in New York and everything was so overwhelming in terms of size and scale. I would love to go back again and revisit now what we are a bit older and wiser.

Closer to home, is there some place you like to head to recharge the batteries?

Cork Harbour, whether it’s out for a sail or spin to some of the fantastic beaches or maybe a spot of mackerel fishing – they don’t call it Ireland’s Maritime Paradise for nothing.

Do you like to catch up with family/friends at the weekend?

Normally I am at the yacht club so I catch up with friends there and would always make time to catch up with my Mum over the weekend.

We have so many places to eat out in Cork - where are your go to spots for coffee/ lunch/ special meal?

Living and working in Cobh I am spoilt for choice as to where to go. Coffee – Truly Scrumptious on the Prom, Lunch The Quays Bar & Restaurant, Special Dinner Jacobs on the Mall.

Sunday night comes around too fast.. how do you normally spend it?

Relaxing in front of the TV.

What time does your alarm clock go off on Monday morning?

6.45am.

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