was invited by the Nautical Academy (NA) to its official launch. Aiming to offer crew the opportunity to receive training from a wide range of industry experts, all under one roof in the central hub of Barcelona, the initiative poses an intriguing proposition.

Settled in the heart of the Port of Barcelona within the stronghold that is MB'92 and next door to up-and-coming industry player Marina Port Vell, the headquarters of NA is set in the picturesque Sovren House, an old clock building, lovingly restored to house the new facilities.

Industry partners confirmed thus far are Warsash, Barcelona Watersports, MedAire, Bond, and Blanchard International, all of whom will combine to provide the very best in deck & engineering certification, mandatory & non mandatory courses, RYA training courses, as well as medical training, ETO and AV/IT, management and crew leadership training, diving, and interior & culinary courses.

Lars Lippuner, business development manager at Warsash described to the assembled guests his feelings as "proud and glad to stand here and bring some courses to Barcelona through the Nautical Academy". Anastasia Kellermann, a trainer and project manager for the Nautical Academy from Blanchard echoed NA's founder and owner Stephen White's vision with the simple mantra, "we want to raise the industry standard".

Joey Meen, honorary secretary of the PYA was at the NA under an auditing remit. Having undergone her study she was full of praise, focusing on the potential that the NA would offer crew, and even announcing the NA's new position as a new regional office for the PYA.

With crew training a constant topic for debate and industry criticism any new initiative taking advantage of the collection of crew in a central destination can only be a good thing. Watch this space.

Nautical Academy's HQ, Sovren House.

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