French anchor designer Alain Poiraud, creator of the Spade and Sword anchors, passed away in February, according to information on the Sail the World Web site and forum. In addition to designing and promoting his Spade anchor, Poiraud was the author of The Complete Anchoring Handbook and Tout savoir sur le mouillage. He designed and built his own steel ketch, Hylas, and in the 1990s he sailed the Meditteranean where he was inspired to develop the Spade anchor as an answer to the anchoring difficulties he saw amongst the cruising fleet. The result was the inspiration for what some call the “new generation” of boat anchors being created by various companies around the world. More information on Poiraud and his sailing and other adventures can be found on his Web site.