The City of Liverpool, Sail Training International and Dublin are set to join forces to host the inaugural Irish Sea Tall Ships Regatta which will see a fleet of majestic Tall Ships race from Dublin to Liverpool from Sunday 26th August 2012.
An action packed four day event is being planned by Liverpool City Council and Sail Training International to welcome the international fleet of Tall Ships and crews to the North West from 30th August – Sunday 2nd September 2012.
A fleet of Tall Ships including the magnificent Russian Class A square rigger Mir, will make a spectacular return as they race to the city for the first time since The Tall Ships Races 2008, which attracted around 450,000 visitors.
The Irish Sea Tall Ships Regatta is an additional event to complement Sail Training International's flagship summer race series The Tall Ships Races, presented by Szczecin, which will visit the host ports of St. Malo, Lisbon, Cadiz and La Coruna before concluding in the final race port of Dublin. A selection of the international fleet will then sail on to Liverpool.
Commenting on the Irish Sea Tall Ships Regatta, Peter Cardy, Chief Executive of Sail Training International, said: "Liverpool has a rich maritime history and has been a great friend to sail training which has helped to develop a strong willingness throughout the Tall Ships family to return to the city. We hope that the Irish Sea Tall Ships Regatta could become a recurring fixture in the busy calendar of events that is enjoyed by the residents of Liverpool as well as the many visitors to this fantastic city."
The general public can expect to see the international crews take part in a colourful and vibrant crew parade in addition to being able to set foot on board a Tall Ship for a glimpse into what life at sea is really like. A full entertainment programme will be revealed later this year.
Leader of Liverpool City Council, Councillor Joe Anderson, said: "Liverpool has a long, proud maritime history. I myself have a personal affinity with the sea as I joined the Merchant Navy and sailed from Liverpool all over the world.
"I'm committed to doing everything I can to celebrate Liverpool's strong maritime heritage. Nautical events in Liverpool are extremely popular and there's always a huge amount of excitement around the visit of Tall Ships to the city.
"Everyone in Liverpool has an affinity with the sea and we're delighted to be able to host this inaugural visit which will attract thousands of visitors to the city.
"We're already working on how we can make the four day event a memorable occasion for everyone involved and in doing so, showcase our iconic waterfront."
Sail Training International is also offering the chance for young people to take part in the Irish Sea Tall Ships Regatta via its Sultanate of Oman Bursary Scheme, established to help fund up to 100 people (16-24 year olds) to take part in events organised by the charity each year.