YET another fantastic week in Falmouth’s rich maritime history as the town came alive for the Falmouth to Royal Greenwich Tall Ships Regatta, writes David Barnicoat.
Thanks to John Hick of the Falmouth Tall Ships Association, Sam Groome and the other organisers who worked extremely hard to secure this prestigious event.
With free entertainment, stalls, fireworks and numerous food outlets there was a carnival atmosphere in the town for thousands to enjoy.
Full marks to harbour master Mark Samson and dock master Tony Lowe who planned the berthing of the fleet, the inter-ship communications and the safety of the Parade of Sail with professionalism.
There was a buzz of excitement in the air every day the fleet were town.
For four of the tall ships races 1966, 1982, 1998 and 2008 I spent much of the time afloat, as a spectator in 1966 and three times piloting Class A tall ships in the other three races.
On Sunday I watched the Parade of Sail from fields above Rosemullion where spectators had a superb vista of the advancing fleet coming across the bay in glorious weather.
The Parade of Sail was good but not as memorable as the 1998 or 2008 events for it lacked the big guns of the international tall ships fleet.
The organisers were let down by the Russian barque Kruzenshtern and the schooner Santa Maria Manuela pulling out of the event at the last minute.
In 1998 we welcomed some of the world’s best-known tall ships, which included Kruzenshtern, Mir, Dar Mlodziezy, Cuautemoc, Sagres, Palinuro, Creola, Alexander von Humboldt, Lord Nelson, Swan Fan Makkum, Georg Stage, Pogoria, Orp Iskra, and Kaliakra. Anchored offshore was the liner QE2 and HMS Nottingham.
The PR gurus claim that there were thousands of spectator craft afloat on Sunday, which is just a ridiculous statement.
Hundreds of local and visiting boats escorted the fleet to the start.
Thank you to all for a most enjoyable tall ships regatta.