Grand Turk at Maritime Festival

A Caribbean dream looks to be all over for the Grand Turk, but there is a silver lining for Great Yarmouth.The magnificent tall ship made what was thought to be her last visit to the Maritime Festival in 2007, when she was on the brink of a new holiday role ferrying trippers in sunnier climes.

A Caribbean dream looks to be all over for the Grand Turk, but there is a silver lining for Great Yarmouth.

The magnificent tall ship made what was thought to be her last visit to the Maritime Festival in 2007, when she was on the brink of a new holiday role ferrying trippers in sunnier climes. But now she can count herself among the many victims of the global credit crunch because the sale fell through.

Now the ship, a replica of an 18th-century frigate modelled on the Royal Navy ship Blanford, is still up for sale for �1.75m but is heading back to Yarmouth as the festival prepares to celebrate its 10th anniversary over the weekend of September 5-6.

She will join an impressive list of vessels, including the Jubilee Sailing Trust's Lord Nelson, the tall sailing ship Artemis, minesweeper HMS Hurworth, the Lydia Eva, HM Custom Cutter Vigilant, the wherry Hathor, a torpedo boat, Caister and Gorleston lifeboats and the Horace and Hannah, a historic shrimper.


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Festival director Aileen Mobbs said public sailing times aboard the Artemis would be announced later but they would include long and short trips.

She said the festival had grown over the years, building on a tried-and-tested popular formula and adding new elements every year. This year, activities on the quay-side would match in quality what was on the water.

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The festival is also welcoming back the Newfoundland dogs, and Ms Mobbs said she was extremely pleased with the array of boats, stalls and contributors building up.

Despite the economic gloom, the festival had managed to retain sponsors and attract new ones. Although the visiting vessels were billed as the headline act, plenty of organisations were coming on board to make their mark on the quayside and add to the vibrant mix of nautical family fun, food and activities.

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