A group of Year 6 pupils from Castletown’s Victoria Road Primary School were welcomed on board Isle of Man Steam Packet Company vessel Manannan as part of a school project.

Class teacher Suzanne O'Reilly arranged for the 10 and 11-year-olds to tour the fast craft while she was in Douglas harbour between sailings. They were shown around the vessel by Captain John Pirrie and Passenger Services Assistant Stacey Murphy.

The visit was to help the students on a maritime project looking at the materials ships are made of, how they are designed, the technology used, how ships carry cargo, safety and how ships have changed over time. The children are also studying the role of the captain and the navigation of ships.

During the tour, Captain Pirrie took the youngsters to Manannan’s bridge to explain how the ship is sailed and his job. Stacey demonstrated some of the on-board safety equipment found on the vessel.

Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: ‘Manannan has a busy sailing schedule, so it isn’t always easy to arrange tours. However, when it is possible to assist an Isle of Man school with a project, especially one as important as building and sailing ships, we’re pleased to be able to help.

‘It seems our visitors enjoyed their tour and I hope they found it useful for their school project. Perhaps one day we’ll be welcoming some of them back as members of Isle of Man Steam Packet Company crew.’

•    Passenger Services Assistant Stacey Murphy demonstrates safety equipment to pupils from Victoria Road Primary School during a tour of Steam Packet Company vessel Manannan

•    Captain John Pirrie explains how fast craft Manannan’s bridge operates and his role to pupils from Victoria Road Primary School during a tour of the Steam Packet Company vessel