THE boss of a Hampshire sail training organisation has been announced as the first ever winner of a top coastguard award.

Ocean Youth Trust South chief executive Mark Todd has been awarded the Maritime and Coastguard Agency Award for Command Commit-ment to Sail Training.

“Mark particularly impressed us with his ability to grasp what it means to be in command and ultimately responsible for everything that happens on board his vessel,” said MCA chief executive Sir Alan Massey. “The sea can produce such a straightforward link between cause and effect, and the skipper’s responsibilities create clarity of vision that does not always exist in other walks of life.”

The Ocean Youth Trust is based in Southampton and Gosport, taking up to 500 young people a year sailing on their 72ft yacht.