How to Join

Volunteer on the Lady Nelson

The Tasmanian Sail Training Association (TSTA) is an association run entirely by volunteers with membership open to all interested persons. Experience is not a requirement.

Enthusiastic volunteers are always welcome and you may contribute as much as you like. Full training is provided.

When you arrive on the ship it can be confusing, Don't worry, an experienced crew person will mentor you for the the first few times and show you the ropes (or lines as we refer to them). 

Before you know it you will be part of the crew setting sails, pulling on sheets and releasing bunts and clews (and know what you are doing!).

Sailing on the Lady Nelson is classed as commercial sea time.  Our current four masters have all gained their skippers tickets onboard as have several of our engineers.  

The Lady Nelson also offers in house training for navigation, safety at sea, knots and rope work as well as general seamanship.

To sail on the Lady Nelson you do need to be a member (so as you are covered by insurance).

Get sailing today

We offer a range of Membership types:

  • Adult: $55 per year
  • Family: $75 per year
  • Full time Student OVER 20 years old: $35 per year
  • Full time Student UNDER 20 years old: $20 per year


  • Our Sail Training Program is available to all interested persons aged 16 years and over.
  • It is a requirement of our insurance that children under the age of 16 cannot be crew.

The VOLUNTEER position (unpaid) requires you to:

  • To become a member of the Lady Nelson
    We need you to become a member so as you are covered by our insurance. 
  • Be fluent in Spoken English
    Communication is key to understand directions and operating the ship safely.
  • Attend initial safety training.
    This safety training can be part of a regular sailing day.  You and your trainers arrive at the ship several hours before the scheduled sailing time.  In these hours you will be shown the safety systems of the ship and the ships safety protocols.  Then we go sailing and you start to learn the ropes. This training can be offered as an evening course.
  • Ability to attend sailing on a regular and ongoing basis
    Learning to ship such as the Lady Nelson takes time and effort.  We are looking for long term volunteers that can learn the ropes and help with our ongoing sailing program. In the early days of your training you will be assigned a mentor to assist with your learning.
  • Working with Schools
    Many of our trips involve schools and young people.  To be involved with these sailings you need to apply for a Working with Vulnerable People.  This is at no coast to you and will be explained on your initial training day.

How it all works

  1. Please fill out the membership form below and send to our office.  
  2. Undertake your Safety Induction Training (SIT).  You will need to ring our office to arrange 6234 3348
  3. Once your initial safety induction training has been completed we will provide you with access to our crew only sailing summary site where all sailing opportunities are listed. You select the days when you want to sail and register online as an 'expression of interest'. The crewing officer will update the list of crew accepted for that voyage.   
  4. You are then sailing and learning (mostly on the Derwent River).  These videos may help with your learning.  
    Training Videos
  5. As you achieve competencies you will be considered for longer voyages away from Hobart.

So welcome to the Lady Nelson, we look forward to meeting you and getting you out on the water.

Apply  for membership today

Complete the form below and send to 

Unfuling the sails
Lady Nelson At Berth
youth sailing 1