The Great Big Cornish Gig Project

The Great Big Cornish Gig Project has been set up to engage Armed Forces Wounded Injured and Sick Serving (WISS) Personnel and Veterans in the construction of a Cornish pilot gig.  They will be trained in boatbuilding skills, build a gig and ultimately row their gig to the Scillies where it will be donated to the “Help for Heroes” gig team to race in the 2016 World Pilot Gig Championships.

The project is funded by the Armed Forces Community Covenant Grant scheme and the National Maritime Museum, Cornwall and will help personnel make the transition from service life to civilian life.  Training is adapted to various levels of disability and the customised in-house programme means that many can achieve an NVQ vocational qualification.


Construction of the gig is taking place in the National Maritime Museum workshop gallery with professional boat builder Andrew Nancarrow.  There are plenty of construction components and tasks to be undertaken and the project consists of three workshop days a week plus one day for a programme of offsite waterborne activity.

The “EPIC ROW” from Falmouth to St Marys on the Isles of Scilly will start in Falmouth in 2016 and visit many of Cornwall’s Gig clubs on their way around the coast before finally reaching their destination and donating the Gig to the “Help for Heroes” gig team.  The “Help for Heroes” team will race the gig in the World Pilot Gig Championships.

Currently, the project needs WISS beneficiaries to take part in the project – together with sponsors and supporters.  For more details, please contact MikeSelwood @

You can follow the progress of the project on Facebook.