A massive chance to be part of something special - join the Tall Ships Sunderland

Sunderland's Tall Ships Races project director Michelle Daurat.
Sunderland's Tall Ships Races project director Michelle Daurat.

Shout loud and proud - and let’s make Tall Ships Sunderland 2018 a massive showcase.

Shout loud and proud - and let’s make Tall Ships Sunderland 2018 a massive showcase.

The races are coming to Sunderland and it wll be amazing for the city. We have got lots of opportunities to shout about it and the Tall Ships Races is a big opportunity

Michelle Daurat

That’s the message for 2018 from the person at the helm of the campaign to make the festival a massive hit. It’s Wearside’s chance to put on a show, said project director Michelle Daurat.

Okay, so the city missed out on winning the 2021 City of Culture bid and there was huge disappointment, said Michelle.

But she added: “The races are coming to Sunderland and it wll be amazing for the city.

“We have got lots of opportunities to shout about it and the Tall Ships Races is a big opportunity.”

It all depends on individuals, businesses, performers - all sorts of people taking the chances being offered to them. Those opportunities include;

* Good old-fashioned shuggy boats and helter skelters could be on the way to the Tall Ships races when they come to Sunderland.

* So could stalls selling all sorts of wonderful goods.

* And so could singers, dancers and bands of wonderful talent. Among the huge range of tall ships attractions, there will be two stages where performers of local, regional and national acclaim can perform, said Michelle.

“We want them to come forward and have their slot on the stage It could be school choirs, brass bands, dancers. We want to see lots of good quality talent.

“There are so many amazing people with local talent and we want them to come forward. It is a brilliant showcase.”

“We will be having a full arts and heritage cultural programme.”

Two fairground sites are being earmarked as part of the land-based attractions during the races, including one at Seaburn. But it won’t all be hair-raising modern fairground entertainment.

Michelle said: “There will be a couple of fairground sites including one for a vintage fairground with rides, a helter skelter and shuggy boats.”

In another lucrative opportunity, interested people are being urged to sign up for the chance to promote their wares at trade and exhibition stands.

Michelle described it as “a chance to promote your wares, such as new products.”

All of these attractions will only be possible if interested applicants come forward - either to sign up for the markets and to stage the fairground rides, or to perform on the entertainment stages.

Anyone interested is urged to ask for an application package from the Tall Ships Races Sunderland organisers.

Eventually, around 80 ships are expected to arrive on Wearside for the spectacle which could attract crowds of 1.5 million people.

The Sunderland leg of next year’s races runs from July 11 to July 14 next year.

Sunderland will be the first leg of the 2018 races. Once the fleet leaves, it will be in Esbjerg, in Denmark, from July 18 to July 21.

Then the ships will sail the Cruise in Company leg to Stavanger, in Norway, for a stay from July 26 to July 29.

The last port is Harlingen, in Holland, and the ships will be there from August 3 to August 6.

To find out more on how to get involved in next year’s event, visit www.tallshipssunderland.com.