The Wailers to headline at Tall Ships Races Hartlepool this summer

The exciting update on the jam-packed four-day event has arrived alongside organisers announcing the opening times for an event being held across Hartlepool Marina and port between July 6-9.

The Tall Ships Races Hartlepool site will be open from 10am on Thursday to welcome the ships in before noon and the site will close at 9pm that day.

It will then be open from 10am-11pm on Friday and Saturday. On Sunday, July 9, it will be open from 7am-5pm. Times vary on the final day because of the Grand Departure.

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Catherine Honey, Event Director for Tall Ships Races Hartlepool, said: “One thing we cannot change is mother nature and the times of our tides determines when we must get ships undocked and out to sea to prepare for their next race to Fredrikstad in Norway.

“It might be early on the Sunday but come down and grab some breakfast from one of our traders or businesses who will be opening early whilst we wish our crews well on their onward travels.”

A full programme of activities then awaits on the Sunday. Even though the ships leave the port, they will only move out into the sea off the coast of Seaton Carew.

Before their departure the ships will parade their sails along the coast of Hartlepool travelling north from 1-3pm, this is a spectacle not to be missed and can be viewed from many coastal locations. The official race start time is 4pm.

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The departure will be the culmination of four fantastic days of entertainment, with two main stages planned at Victoria Quay (X-Energy stage) and Navigation Point.

A smaller community stage, the Highlight Stage, will be on Jackson’s Landing alongside the Military Village and Family Beach.

There is also a 35m observation wheel planned for Victoria Quay.

A key highlight for the full event is the Friday crew parade, which will see the visiting crews of the tall ships parade from Victoria Quay through the Headland and Town Moor from 4.30pm to say thank you.

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The crews will use dance, music, costume, and team spirit to excite crowds and create a wonderful atmosphere for the whole family to enjoy.

On the Town Moor, Sail Training International and Hartlepool Borough Council will present ships with prizes including the winners of the first leg of The Tall Ships Races 2023.

Maximo Park headline the Friday and The Wailers on the Saturday as part of a live music bill supported by the Sherlocks and The Magic Numbers.

Over 50 other live music performers have been announced, including some of the North-East’s top talent including Michael Gallagher, James Leonard Hewitson and John Bramwell.

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The Tower of Light performance on Friday nightwill transform Hartlepool’s quayside into a magical theatre of pyrotechnics, performance and music centred around a huge lighthouse.

The Saturday night entertainment will close with a huge firework display which will light up the skies over Hartlepool’s Waterfront.

Catherine added: ‘‘We are delighted to be able to offer over 100 free performances and activities for people to enjoy at this four-day event.

“This is a truly international event with tall ships arriving from as far as Indonesia and Uruguay to visit Hartlepool next month and it’s exciting that we have been able to pull together such a huge free and unticketed event to celebrate the occasion.”

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On the Family Beach created on Jackson’s Landing there will be a range of fun family activities from sandcastle building competitions to garden games held, as well as the Military Village.

Hartlepool Folk Festival has been commissioned to create a giant Ceilidh, a traditional Irish dance.

The host port will also celebrate with world food markets and a variety of other things, including illustrator Jonny Hannah’s Shipbuilders and Fisherfolk exhibition at the Museum of Hartlepool and Hartlepool Art Gallery.

The Northern Echo | What’s On