Discover Craig Boumphrey, Safety Officer for Sea Shepherd Global
- Hi Craig, welcome to Seascope France, it's good to see you!
Hi, no problem, I'm happy to be here!
- So who are you ?
My name is Craig Boumphrey and I’m a 2nd Mate / Safety Officer for Sea Shepherd Global. I’m also a freelance Deckhand/Mate.
- Are you married ?
Yes I’m married, I married my beautiful wife and best friend Helen last September, here in Antibes. We did plan a big white winter wedding in December, though due to Covid we never got back to the UK for our appointments and fittings so we brought it forward. It was a lovely day with family and friends.
No kids yet but we’ve an 18 month old rescue Pointador called Beau.
- How long have you been working at Sea Shepherd Global ?
I have been working with Sea Shepherd now for roughly 5 years.
I started by joining Sea Shepherd UK where I was very active in Beach Cleans in my local area, starting a mini group which we estimated to have removed over 5 tonnes of debris in only a couple of years. I was also part of the Sea Shepherd UK Ghostnet Campaign, as a RIB driver assisting in removing discarded fishing nets from wrecks and various sites around the UK. I went on campaign in the Faroe Islands to document and stream the Grindadrap (the driving and slaughtering of pilot whales) to expose to the world the atrocious behaviour of this tradition.
Whilst volunteering with Sea Shepherd UK I started my first position on the Sea Shepherd Vessel Age of Union (former Sam Simon) as 3rd and then 2nd mate. I joined the vessel in Liberia, where we worked alongside the Liberian Government tackling Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU). I worked on board over Christmas and New Year of 2018 before disembarking in France in March 2019 (after a month working on the Dolphin By Catch campaign).
Since moving to France I have also joined Sea Shepherd Montpellier and when I worked in Vancouver on a M/Y Kogo I joined Sea Shepherd Vancouver and was active in local beach cleans.
From October 2021 I returned to the Age of Union in Lisbon as sole bridge officer and safety officer whilst the vessel was in refit, I continued this position in January in Sicily on Sea Shepherd Global’s newest vessel the Sea Eagle in refit.
- Is it your dream job ? Do you imagine yourself in the same position in 10 years ?
Yes this is my dream job, protecting the oceans, working at sea and making a real difference.
- How did you find out about Sea Shepherd ?
I found out about Sea Shepherd whilst on a ferry to Spain from another marine charity ORCA who conduct cetacean surveys. I then watched Whale Wars and thought I want to be a part of this.
- Do you have any amusing stories from onboard ?
Funny story…… can’t really think of a funny story though on the Age of Union you’ve got to be a fan of The Office USA as this is our down time program to binge watch.
The best moment was seeing a super pod of 1000s of dolphins off West Africa, everywhere eyes could see there were dolphins.
- Any scary moments onboard ?
Nothing has scared me on board but I’ve been tearful and upset seeing the death of dolphins in fishing nets in the Bay of Biscay.
- What advice would you give to all beginners to the industry ?
Work hard and gain as much experience as possible. Network and get to know people in the industry. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if your unsure. People would rather help than have you make a costly mistake.
- Is it how you expected it ?
Yes. I’ve worked on good yachts and bad yachts with great captains and captains that I’d never work for again. I suppose it’s the same in all industries.
One thing though is that being onboard Sea Shepherd vessels is amazing. The crew are all there for the same reason and you make lifelong friends.
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