Parkham WI embarrassed by dressing as pirates for talk by former Somali pirate hostage


Members of a North Devon WI were left embarrassed after a number of them had dressed up as pirates for a talk by a former sea captain who has been held hostage by Somali pirates for several weeks. 

Members of Parkham WI had thought they were being given a talk about piracy at their meeting on April 11 but they soon realised their mistake when Captain Colin Darch arrived to give them a talk about his time being captured by pirates in 2008.

A report given on the meeting reads: “The speaker at the April meeting was Captain Colin Darch, who talked about piracy, embarrassingly the WI all dressed as pirates for the evening not realising that Captain Darch was going to be talking about his experience of being held hostage by Somalia Pirates rather than piracy in general.

“However once this ¬†had been gotten over everyone sat down to listen to Captain Darch’s story and what a story it was.

“Absolutely fascinating and gripping. ¬† If you ever get a chance to hear Colin speak grab the opportunity because he is a great raconteur and very humorous

“He had recently published a book telling of his life and recounting his time as a hostage, which WI members were able to purchase at the end of the evening.”

Captain Darch said he found the whole thing amusing and more like a scene from the Pirates of Penzance than anything like he had experienced while he being held hostage.

He said: “Of course I didn’t take offence or mind. It was more like the Pirates of Penzance.

“I must admit I quite enjoy giving talks to groups such as WIs. I am doing quite a few of them and it is a good way to flog my book.

“They were lovely ladies. They made me judge who was the best dressed which was a difficult choice. In the end I decided to choose the one with who had a fluffy parrot on her shoulder. Of course there weren’t any parrots near the real pirates.”


Original Article