Construction of a replica 40ft Viking longboat in Waterford City by 18 FÁS students under the watchful eye of shipwright, Michael Kennedy is almost complete. Final work on rigging the sails, setting reefing pennants and making the oars is underway, along with some minor work on the rudder.
Waterford has a very strong Viking heritage, dating back as early as 812 when Vikings settled in Woodstown near Mount Congreve. In 914 however they moved to a new settlement, Waterford City, which became a well-defended stronghold that survived and prospered.
The Vikings called it ‘Vedrarfjord’, meaning windy harbour, which over time became ‘Waterford’ – the only city in Ireland to retain its Norse name.
The project secured a longboat drawing from the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde, Denmark.
Begun in June 2010, it is a joint initiative of FÁS, Waterford Museum of Treasures, Waterford City Council and the private sector including the Waterford Chamber of Commerce.