Boatswain keeps tradition alive


Capt Aaron Lee and AB Keiran Sidle, DND ~

Being a boatswain demands a lot from an individual. Attention to detail, teamwork and physicality are all part of the job.

However, one aspect of the trade remains integral but often taken for granted – rope work.

There is one young sailor who considers rope work more than just part of the job. AB Keiran Sidle of Naval Replenishment Unit (NRU) Asterix has turned this skill into a hobby.

AB Sidle has been in the Royal Canadian Navy for three years and it was during his QL3 trade training that he was introduced to rope work. In addition to the traditional knots such as the bowline, clove hitch and square knot, he has taken his skills to the next level by creating knots that are intricate and decorative works of art.

In one deployment alone, with NRU Asterix, AB Sidle made over 50 small rope work projects for the ship or his fellow crewmembers.

Some of his more decorative works include the adornment for the ship’s bell, a rope knot ship’s wheel and a beautiful rope knot anchor, all of which currently decorate the bulkheads of Asterix.

He’s even presented one of his creations to former Commander Royal Canadian Navy, VAdm Ron Lloyd, during a visit to the ship while in theatre.

For anyone interested in starting his or her own decorative rope projects, AB Sidle has practical advice: try to be as creative as possible and have a lot of patience.

For a boatswain with NRU Asterix, rope work is critical to mission success, but for AB Sidle this skill has amplified into a hobby that gives him a chance to relax and unwind after a hard day’s work. He would like to bring rope work back to the modern sailor as he believes it helps teach them to take pride in what they do.

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  1. Barbara Mulvihill says:

    I am very proud to call Kerian Sidle a very dear friend of mine. He has always put his heart and soul in everything he does. Congratulations Keria. U make our country proud.

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