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Whitehaven Maritime Festival 1999 was so successful it was decided to hold the festival every 2 years - and here we are again with a festival that was even bigger and better than the previous. With the harbour renovation complete there was a lot more room for both visitors and events, and with favourable weather, Festival 2001 was a great success. An estimated 117,000 visitors, many from all over the country and abroad, visited this year.

Crowds on the Sugar Tongue and around the Hub

After the popularity of the tall ships visits last year the crowds flocked to see 3 more - The Earl of Pembroke, Phoenix and the sail training association's Prince William on Sunday afternoon. Other boats included the Brocklebank tug from Liverpool.

Tall Ship Prince William arriving at Whitehaven

There was a  presence by the armed forces and displays by lifeboat and coastguard. A Spitfire flypast wowed the crowds and fantastic displays by an RAF Tornado and a Sea Fury were truly amazing on both days. On Sunday a full honour guard from the US Navy and the Royal Navy marched along the Sugar Tongue to a presentation from the Whitehaven Mayor, Norman Williams. The Royal Marines band performed a marching routine after having already entertained with a concert at the Hub.

There was also live music at several venues throughout the weekend including BBC Radio Cumbria and CFM roadshows and street entertainers along the quayside and in the town. A large funfair ran for the whole weekend and there were many marquees full of produce from local people along with information about various groups, charities and organisations.

A re-enactment on Saturday evening with some very loud cannon fire was topped by a huge firework display with the illuminated wave structure and Crow's Nest plus harbour lights as a backdrop.


Whitehaven Maritime Festival 2001