A change of country

We had to sort out a new courtesy flag today. We headed for Bornholm – an island roughly 20 miles south of the south-eastern corner of Sweden. It is an island which has been fought over for years – originally Danish, the Swedish conquered the island in 1645. However, they returned it in the subsequent peace settlement. After another war, it was ceded to the Swedes in 1658 under the Treaty of Roskilde. However, a revolt broke out the same year and, as a result, a deputation of islanders presented the island as a gift to King Frederick III on the condition that the island would never be ceded again. This status was confirmed in the Treaty of Copenhagen in 1660. Since then it has been Danish, though it was occupied by the Germans and then the Soviets during the second world war.

Once claim to fame during the Cold War is that on the day of Stalin’s death, a Polish fighter pilot defected and landed a MiG-15 fighter on the island. He was rewarded with asylum as Western allies thereby got their first view of the new MiG fighters!

Our landing was less dramatic, though the trip across saw the wind fluctuating more than the promises of Tory politicians vying to lead their party … Engine on, job out, engine off, jib in …. repeat ….. Still it was an easy run across and we headed for Hasle on the west coast of the island.

Hasle is an ex-fishing harbour and its main claim to fame was in the 19th and early 20th century where it was a centre for smoked herring. In 1903 they smoked 19,300 ol of fish (1 ol = 80 fish), but it went downhill from there as they got better and better at catching fish, while there were less and less to catch …. A familiar story ….

To see our track, follow the link below: