A MALDON-BASED Thames sailing barge is on the shortlist to win a prestigious award.

Blue Mermaid has been entered into the annual Classic Boat Awards hosted by Classic Boat magazine.

The public can vote for it in the Traditional New Build category.

An awards spokesman said: “Steel-hulled Thames sailing barge Blue Mermaid is the first of her type to be built for nine decades.

“This one is a replica of the original, by the same name, which was built by the Mistley Shipping Company in 1930 and lost in the war.

“She was commissioned by the Sea-Change Sailing Trust, which is using her for sail-training and cargo duties – all without an engine.

“Every year since 2007, we have celebrated the best restorations, newly-built boats, people and more, in the wonderful world of traditional vessels and the people who float them.

“Everything from rowing boats to J-Class yachts have won awards, every winner decided by public vote.”

The voting deadline is Monday, March 9 at midnight. To vote, visit awards.classicboat.co.uk/vote-now.