Germany

Setting Sail: Final Regatta For Troops In Germany

The British Möhnesee Sail Training Centre has been in operation for 62 years.

A monument has been unveiled to mark the closure of the British Möhnesee Sail Training Centre in Germany.

Thousands of soldiers and their families have learned to sail at the facility, which has been in operation for more than 60 years.

On the reservoir, known as the target of the 1943 Dambusters Raid, sailors took part in a regatta - demonstrating the skills they have picked up during their training.

British Moehnesee Sail Training Centre
The final regatta at the British Möhnesee Sail Training Centre.

National dinghy sailing champion, Corporal Simon Horsfield, explained the benefits of learning there:

 “It's a very tricky place to sail, the Möhnesee. The wind shifts around a lot...that challenge helps you when you go out to race against other competitors.

"You're very able to adapt to different wind conditions and it makes you a better sailor."

In the last four months, the Möhnesee has still attracted soldiers about to leave Germany, with more than 300 people qualifying to sail or windsurf since April.

Möhnesee has also hosted soldiers' families for breaks, during deployment to Afghanistan.

The water authority that has leased the site to the Army eventually plans to open it to the public, and want to ensure the enduring British presence remains.