#DroghedaTALLSHIPS – Drogheda Port is to welcome an inaugural gathering of tallships during the Drogheda Fringe Festival in May, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The sight of these tallships heading up the Boyne and to berth along the town's quay's, will be eagerly awaited and with the sense of adventure that goes with it.
The public will be able to board the six tallships along the Ballast and Deepwater Quays, on the Bank Holiday weekend of (4-5 May), before the flotilla head for Liverpool.
In fact, Drogheda, is the first port of call for these vessels which are also to visit Dublin, Belfast, Cobh, Gloucester, Liverpool, Whitehaven and Warrenpoint during May and June.
The visit of the tallships to the Co. Louth port, as previously reported on Afloat.ie, is part of Sail Training Ireland's programme of sail training voyages in 2013, where there are more than 500 berths available, for details visit this LINK. It will also be possible to book a passage from Liverpool to Drogheda on one of these traditional sailing ships, just as it was in the 1800's!
Paul Fleming CEO said "Drogheda Port Company is delighted to be hosting the inaugural Tall Ships event. The port has a commercial heritage going back to 1790 and a historical one much further. The soft values of seaports are incredibly important to their local area, and the port community is fully supportive to the opening up of the town to tourism and recreation through the river and our port.
Following on from the first ever cruise ship to call to Drogheda Port, with the arrival of the 122 passenger 'Clipper Adventurer' last year, port officials are pro-actively engaged with tourism interests with a view to developing maritime tourism infrastructure side by side with our important commercial activities.
"Port towns and cities stand apart, and by their nature tend to be more cosmopolitan and welcoming with a unique selling point for tourism. This year will be a significant maritime year for Drogheda, and the Boyne will continue to surprise and demonstrate its true value to the locality".
Local TD Gerald Nash said "the Tall Ships will give us a visual reminder of the past but also a glimpse into the future. We need to maximise the potential of our river in terms of tourism and leisure facilities." It will provide a huge boost to Drogheda not only in terms of visitor numbers and the knock on effect to the local economy, but also in terms of the sheer pleasure it will bring to the people.