Pete Goss and the crew of Spirit of Mystery have begun their epic voyage to Australia

Taking advantage of a change in wind, the Mystery crew slipped their lines last night (Monday 20 October), waved goodbye (pictured) and set sail from Newlyn for the long journey south. After the recent strong Westerly winds, grey skies and torrential rain, the wind finally swung around to the North West, giving the lugger enough of a push into the Bay of Biscay.

The 37ft Mounts Bay lugger, Spirit of Mystery is following in the wake of seven intrepid Cornishmen who sought out a new life in the Australian gold rush. Leaving Newlyn on Saturday 18 November 1854, the Mystery travelled about 11,800 nautical miles in 116 days before arriving in Melbourne on 14 March 1855.

Pete Goss said: “After the long months of building, training and preparation it is great to be finally under way. There are so many people to thank who have helped us to get this far and all the people who have come to see the boat, extended a hand of friendship or sent us messages of support through the website. Despite the gloomy weather we are optimistic and in good spirits. We hope people will follow our progress on the website – – and support our chosen charity Cornwall Playing for Success.”

Pete’s son Eliot added: “We have trained really hard so I am not scared, just excited and keen to get under way. I think this is a real learning experience and the chance of a lifetime.”