The Trustees of the Pilgrim Heritage Sailing Foundation are acting responsibly with their management and operation of Pilgrim and our various facilities in the light of the Covid-19 outbreak. Welfare of guests, crew and volunteers is paramount and is guiding our decision making and operating policies.

The Foundation is following the advice of Public Health England and other relevant national and local Government agencies in the UK, Channels Islands and France.




  • Pilgrim will continue to sail as scheduled and host Open Days and other planned events over the weeks ahead.
  • The Foundation’s hygiene and catering protocols have been reviewed and updated to accommodate additional measures associated with coronavirus.
  • The situation is under constant review and our position will be updated from time to time on this page, as is necessary.
  • Our Terms and Conditions of Booking 2020, adopted on 1st December 2019 continue to apply.



In view of the Government announcements made today about social distancing we have stopped planned training and maintenance activities by volunteers for the time being.



We understand that booked guests sailing in the weeks and months ahead will want to know our current position. We are a registered Charity and our Trustees are reviewing matters today and studying Government advice and awaiting further clarification on certain matters. We expect to make an announcement to guests by the end of this week. Please be patient, we are doing everything we can to provide a timely but clear and helpful response.



The Foundation Trustees have issued a public statement it can be viewed here

We will be contacting guests individually on Monday next, 23rd March, by email to inform them of the arrangements concerning their booking. Please be patient and if you do not receive an email, please check your SPAM folder. All of our administration is undertaken by charity volunteers and we are just putting all the elements together so we can update you.



In view of the outbreak our office is now closed as a result of social distancing. Our volunteer staff are now working remotely. The telephone system still routes calls to the right department and calls will be dealt with as normal. Please avoid attempting to visit or board the vessel in Brixham.



All Pilgrim customers for 2020 sailings have been sent an email explaining how we are dealing with your booking. If you have not received our email, please check your spam folder first. If you need further information please contact us. For bookings made through our agents, they will deal with any enquiries you may have and you should contact them.



Today we have notified all guests who have booked with us for 2020 sailings about the transfer and cancellation arrangements. If you have not received that email, please check your spam folder or contact us directly.



Today our 2021 programme has been published and out website is being progressively updated. Over the last month our booked guests have had the opportunity to decide how they wanted us to handle their bookings and that task has largely been completed. We still do not know when and if it will be possible to resume sailing activity this year. Any public sailings planned will be listed here.  In the meantime our volunteers are staying at home and keeping safe. We are resourcing our management and administration with remote volunteer working.



The recent Government announcements give us cause to believe we may be able to resume some sailings soon. We are still waiting for specific guidance as to whether we can resume and when. We have completed detailed risk assessments to identify how we can undertake maintenance and day sailing activity in a Covid Secure way and are confident we can do so. Once we know more we will publish our plans.



Great news! We are now allowed to operate. Pilgrim Day Sailings are planned from 17th August. Much work has been done to establish a COVID Secure way to sail the boat and to look after our guests on board. It will be different to our normal style of operating but we will still be able to show you how a heritage sailing trawler operated plus the amazing coastal scenery and marine wildlife.  Enjoy the fresh sea air and experience the magic of being simply propelled by the wind. Come sailing with us.



More good news – we’re still able to carry on sailing. The Trustees of the Pilgrim Foundation have reviewed the announcements made by HM Government on 9th September and the further guidance that has followed. Pilgrim is a charity operated Covid Secure workplace and venue and our operating procedures are based on compliance with our risk assessments. We are of the view that those procedures are consistent with the latest regulations which specifically encompass sailing activities.

Our crew follow specially developed methods and protocols to manage and sail the boat and our guests are organised within individual household bubbles outside. Social distancing between bubbles and crew is maintained throughout each sailing or mitigations are prescribed. Guests and crew are required to adhere to hygiene protocols for individual use of shared facilities. Our maximum guests are limited to 8 persons on board from no more than 4 bubbles and the maximum bubble size is 6.

We will continue to monitor the situation moving forward and at present we intend to sail as scheduled. In the interests of everyone’s health and safety, Guests are asked to complete the Covid Declaration issued by email 24hours before sailing and to comply with the directions of the Skipper and crew while onboard.



Our 2020 sailings have now ended.

Covid 19 – 2021 bookings

The landscape around managing the coronovirus pandemic is changing rapidly. Our published sailing schedule anticipates that we will be able to offer our normal level of occupancy and activities in 2021.   However, it is impossible to say what impact the virus will have and what governmental restrictions might apply closer to sailing dates.

We will keep our finger on the pulse of any announcements that may have a direct impact upon our intentions. We have robust Covid-19 Risk Assessments  in place which are regularly reviewed. We plan to resume sailing in April 2021 in line with our normal pattern of “seasonal” sailing activity.

It is obviously not possible to put in place new or anticipated protocols that may be required until the global, national or local picture becomes clearer.  We will adhere to relevant governmental guidelines in relation to the safety of anyone planning to sail with us. Our published Terms and Conditions will apply to any bookings.

Stay safe.



Planned Resumption of Sailing – The big red sails of Pilgrim are being unfurled!

The shackles that have held us all for almost a year are finally, gradually, loosening and here at the Pilgrim Foundation we are delighted to announce that we are resuming our sailing programme. We’ll  start with short sails only – Day, Half Day and Evenings from 13th April. If all goes according to plan, longer trips with overnight sailings will resume from 22nd May.

We have some exciting changes aboard this season and our revised, innovative ways of working will enhance guest comfort and safety. You can read more about those below.

Guests now have new booking options as well with  ‘exclusive use’ of our two cabins on certain sailings where availability permits. Book either a specific cabin or supplementary berths to gain more room for you or your group. The forepeak cabin has four berths and “ensuite” facilities too!  Contact the office for more information and charges. Email:

Our professional skipper and volunteer crew and staff are working hard to get everything ready to welcome guests on board again soon.


Update on Pilgrim Facilities and Operations 2021

During this winter we have been making alterations to Pilgrim and the way we operate to improve our guest experiences and safety.

Improved accommodation

We now have three heads/showers on board for the comfort of guests.  We have removed one previously located forward of the main mast and replaced it with two sparkly new ones. One is accessed from the forepeak with its four berths together with a door to close off the cabin as well as that head. That makes it an ensuite cabin for up to four people.  The second is accessed from the main saloon. which can now also be closed off from the galley/companionway if required, at night. There are two exits from each area.

The Chartroom and Wet Locker have been reconfigured to create a new Skipper’s berth (next to the third head/shower). Crew are now assigned sleeping areas in the separate crew cabin aft of the engine room.

A new butterfly hatch improves the ventilation below decks area allowing additional ventilation in all weathers and at night.

Our main saloon has 8 bunks but only 6 will be now used on a regular basis. The redundant two top bunk spaces will be used for all to share, providing more storage of belongings.

Improved Dining

For those spending nights aboard, we now have tables and chairs for all guests to dine on deck in more comfort, when the weather permits. They can also be utilised if we need to have more than one sitting for a meal in the saloon. We are also fitting a removable cross deck canopy for shade and shelter.

A clear perspex divide will be available for the saloon table if we need to separate guests on the port and starboard sides of the dining table. This facilitates separate sittings/areas for meals if that is required and/or appropriate.

Cleaning and Hygiene

Disposable towels and bins are provided in all heads as is a soap dispenser. We also have a snazzy new ‘fogger’ which we will use to deep clean all interior areas and surfaces regularly. As you would expect, we have revisited all of our risk assessments and cleaning and hygiene protocols to make sure we keep the boat sanitized. There are additional hand sanitising stations for guests on deck and below.

Sailing Tchniques

Last summer we developed new ways of handling Pilgrim and her sails to reduce close contact on deck between crew members and also with our guests and we will deploy those again this season as is necessary. Our goal is to make every trip as enjoyable as possible while also being careful about how we do things.