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Thursday, 30 October 2014

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Tall ships set to dock in Whitehaven tonight

Whitehaven is preparing for an attraction-filled weekend with a visit by tall ships the highlight.

Two impressive ships – the Mist of Avalon and the Maybe – arrive in Whitehaven harbour tonight and will be open for the public to board and tour tomorrow and Sunday.

Joining the ships for the first Whitehaven Tall Ships Weekend will be Chay Blyth’s Ocean Racing Yacht, and all can be enjoyed alongside a continental market, from today until Sunday, and street theatre.

Market organiser Olivier Simonin said they had traders from across Europe taking part, including France, Belgium, Italy, Spain, Holland, and Poland. “They will be wearing traditional costumes, selling high quality products,” he added.

The ships are carrying Sellafield apprentices, organised by the Merseyside Adventure Sailing Trust. The market and street theatre are being staged by Whitehaven Festival Company.

Gerard Richardson, chief executive of Whitehaven Festival Company, extended thanks to the event’s main sponsors Nuclear Management Partners for their “fantastic support”.

Workington is also involved, as tall ship The Pelican will be docking at the Port of Workington, because it is too big for Whitehaven’s harbour. There is no public access to the ship at the Port of Workington.

The 147ft sail trailing vessel was built in France in 1948 and served as an Arctic fishing trawler and coastal trading vessel until 1995. Her new owner then transformed her into a tall ship.

The ships in Whitehaven will be open to the public between 10am and 2pm tomorrow and 10am and 12 noon on Sunday.

The Tall Ships Weekend is one of a series of events that is replacing the Whitehaven Festival.

Whitehaven Live!, featuring Bob Geldof and The Boomtown Rats and The Stranglers, is at Copeland Stadium on July 5.

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