Tuesday, 1 September 2015

16th Great Yarmouth Maritime Festival Norfolk Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 September 2015

The Götheborg
The 16th Great Yarmouth Maritime Festival returns to South Quay on Saturday 5 September (10am to 6pm) and Sunday 6 September (10am to 5pm) to celebrate the town’s proud maritime past and important maritime future, with visiting ships including The Götheborg, the world’s largest wooden sailing ship and the Jubilee Sailing Trust’s Lord Nelson. It’s the first time that The Götheborg from Sweden will be seen at a UK Maritime Festival.

There’s also a full programme of international shanty and folk music, street entertainment, arts, crafts and children’s activities and the first visit of the thrilling DJR Freestyle JetSki Display Team. The festival is organised by Greater Yarmouth Tourism & Business Improvement Area (GYTABIA) in association with Seajacks UK Ltd.

Festival activities and entertainment on South Quay are free; a donation of £1 per visitor towards festival costs is welcomed.

JST Lord Nelson
As well as The Götheborg and JST Lord Nelson, MTB102, the third last vessel to leave Dunkirk in 1940 will be on South Quay, along with steam drifter Lydia Eva, RASC Fast Launch Humber, RNLI Great Yarmouth & Gorleston’s Samarbeta lifeboat, HMC Protector (customs cutter) and MV Confidante (Gardline coastal survey vessel).

The DJR JetSki Display Team, which comprises British and European champions, performs some of the most advanced water based stunts ranging from 15ft high backflips, barrel rolls and 360 and 540 degree spins, to submarines and fountains in the river. Performance times on 5 September are 11am, 12.30pm, 2pm, 3.30pm and 4.30pm and 6 September are 11am, 12.30pm, 2pm, and 3.30pm.

Shanty and maritime music will be performed throughout the weekend at three different venues on South Quay and a fourth stage in Great Yarmouth Market Place. New visiting shanty groups and singers are Patrick & Miguel from France, Scheepsfolk from The Netherlands, 2 Anchors from Gloucester, Roaring Forties from Scunthorpe and Kimber’s Men and Monkey’s Fist both from Yorkshire. Returning performers are Suffolk’s John Ward & Mario Price and Capstan Full Strength. Wrentham Brass Band will be on South Quay to start Sunday morning with a maritime programme.

Addison's Uncle
There’s also a special concert with Norfolk folk band, Addison’s Uncle on The Götheborg’s sun deck, from 8pm to 9.30pm on Saturday 5 September. Tickets for the concert cost £10 and are on sale at www.maritime-festival.co.uk (eshop), Great Yarmouth Tourist Information Centre, Marine Parade, t. 01493 846346, or at the Maritime Festival during the day on September 5 and in the evening ‘on the door’. Fish and chips, beer and soft drinks will be on sale on the quayside.

Visitors will be able to go aboard The Götheborg, JST Lord Nelson, and the Lydia Eva, and meet Admiral Nelson and Mrs Hamilton, Horatio Herring, Lofty the Lighthouse and Mrs H. There will be military re-enactments from East Norfolk Militia, street theatre from Inner State, Punch and Judy shows with Professor Pulson and face painting and balloon modelling.

Find out about the Broads and local nature reserves, meet the RSPB and Norfolk Wildlife Trust, then watch Ernie Childs paint a maritime masterpiece before your eyes, see lace making, spinning and gansey knitting and maritime wood carving, also have a go at making a fisherman’s net.

The JST Lord Nelson will be moored at the south end of the festival. Visitors in wheelchairs are advised to use the Middle Gate or the South Gate to access the event as there is a 96m long cobbled area towards the North Gate which some wheelchair users may find challenging to navigate.

JST Lord Nelson will be operating restricted opening times of 10am to 11.30pm and 3pm to 6pm on Saturday and 10am to 12noon on Sunday, so visitors are advised to arrive early to go aboard this ship.

The Götheborg will be moored near the main stage between middle gate and south gate. Daytime entrance fees are £5 for adults and £4 for children. Family tickets for up to 5 people will cost £20. Fast track tickets are on sale at www.maritime-festival.co.uk (eshop). Unfortunately disabled access is not available on The Götheborg.

Aileen Mobbs, Maritime Festival Chairman said: “It is a dream come true to have secured such a prestigious sailing ship as The Götheborg for Great Yarmouth Maritime Festival, made possible by funding support from the new Greater Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area (GYTABIA). The Götheborg will be at the heart of a weekend of maritime celebration, with JST Nelson, other visiting ships, a busy international shanty singing programme and lots of demonstrations, hands-on activities and entertainment. We are enormously grateful to all our festival sponsors.”

The Maritime Festival sponsors are Seajacks UK Ltd, 3Sun Group, Bateman Groundworks, Birketts LLP, Bunn Fertiliser Ltd, ELM Contracts, e.on Climate & Renwables, HKB Wiltshire, Gardline, MDF Transport, Perenco, Persimmon Homes Anglia, Stevenson Smart and Wellington Construction. The festival is also supported by EastPort UK, Great Yarmouth Tourism & Business Improvement Area (GYTABIA) and Great Yarmouth Borough Council.

The Götheborg, which completed its maiden voyage in 2005-07, is a replica of the original Götheborg, which was built in 1738 at Terra Nova ship yard, in Stockholm, for the Swedish East India Company (Svenska Ostindiska Companiet), and was used for three lucrative voyages between Sweden and China.

The ship dramatically sank on 12 September 1745, in Gothenburg harbour, returning from her third China voyage. She ran aground on a notorious submerged rock, the Hunnebådan (known as the Knipla Börö in the 18th century), right in front of merchants and family members, waiting to welcome the crew and its cargo home.

In 1984 a number of exploratory dives to the shipwreck took place, and an ambitious dream was born to reconstruct The Götheborg to 100% scale, using traditional 18th century ship building skills, methods and materials, but complying with the very latest technological advances for navigation, cooking, heating and hygiene.

Nineteen years after the first dive, including the reconstruction of the original shipyard to carry out much of the work, the new Götheborg was launched in 2003, and finally set sail in October 2005 on a two-year expedition to China, commemorating the maiden voyage of the original Götheborg, www.soic.se/en.