The yacht once owned and sailed by singer Jacques Brel will make her maiden voyage to Ostend at Anchor after restoration.

Jacques Brel’s 20-metre-long steel sailing vessel, which has Zeebrugge as its home port for the time being, will soon be cutting through the waves again.

18 years after the attack on the WTC towers in New York a steel fragment recovered from the collapsed Twin Towers has been mounted on board the Askoy II, Jacques Brel’s sailing boat. The fragment is on the port side of the central cabin. In 2010, Piet Wittevrongel received the piece of steel measuring 15 by 15 cm with the inscription ‘Recovered Steel World Trade Center’ in Flanders House in New York through the intermediary of the Port Authority of New York.

With the Askoy II having reached the final stage of its completion, on the 11th of September the metal fragment was ’embarked’. It’s a dramatic but meaningful souvenir. “It’s important to have a place on board the Askoy II because the ship will spread the message of peace and tolerance”, says Piet, who together with his brother Staf was able to bring the wreck of Brel’s sailing ship from New Zealand to Belgium.

After a 10-year restoration campaign that is now coming to an end, the brothers hope to launch the vessel on 8th April 2020 – Brel’s birthday. Then the two-master will be ready for sailing and will be present at the Havenfeesten of Blankenberge and Ostend at Anchor, where it arrived as a wreck 10 years ago. Congratulations to both initiators, Piet and Staf Wittevrongel.

They had a dream and after 10 years it will become reality!

Bravo from the whole Ostend at Anchor team.