A tall ships dream comes true for Sunderland teenager - with a helping hand from a hotel

Hannah Ridley, right, withHilton Garden Inn Director of Sales, Catherine Graham, centre, and Tall Ships Sunderland Director, Michelle Daurat.
Hannah Ridley, right, withHilton Garden Inn Director of Sales, Catherine Graham, centre, and Tall Ships Sunderland Director, Michelle Daurat.
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A Sunderland teenager is realising her dream of life on the waves thanks to a city hotel.

Hannah Ridley had never sailed on a tall ship before - but the Hilton Garden Inn has stepped in to make the young adventurer’s trip-of-a-lifetime possible.

And Hannah, 17, will now get to experience everything that goes with being part of a crew including steering at the helm, scrubbing the decks and raising the sails.

Hannah, a student of the St. Anthony’s Girls’ Catholic Academy, will sail from Sunderland to Esbjerg in Denmark. She said: “I am both excited and a little nervous about what is in store for me on-board a Tall Ship. I haven’t done anything like this before but I think it’s a great chance to develop valuable life skills by doing something well outside my comfort zone.

“I’d really like to thank The Hilton Garden Inn for helping me make a dream come true.”

Director of Sales for Hilton Garden Inn, Catherine Graham, said:“The Tall Ships Races Sunderland 2018 is set to be a phenomenal occasion that will showcase everything that Sunderland has to offer and we are delighted to be supporting such a fantastic opportunity for young people across the city.

“Everyone at here at Hilton Garden Inn wishes Hannah a fantastic trip, and we look forward to hearing all about it when she gets back from her adventure.”

Project Director for The Tall Ships Races Sunderland 2018, Michelle Daurat, said: “It is fantastic to see the support that local businesses and individuals are showing for the upcoming iconic event.

“The Tall Ships Races Sunderland 2018 will give many young people like Hannah the chance to use their experience of being at sea as a wonderful way of learning about themselves and their crewmates. I’m certain that everyone who takes part will enjoy a life-changing experience as they set a course for adventure.”

Sunderland’s leg of The Tall Ships Races runs from Wednesday, July 11, to Saturday, July 14 and will feature an exciting programme of culture and entertainment.

To keep up with the latest news, go to www.tallshipssunderland.com follow on Twitter @TallShipsSund or Facebook at: Tall Ships Races Sunderland.