EventScotland anchors support for The Tall Ships Races 2011

EventScotland announced today that it is supporting the iconic Tall Ships Races 2011, presented by Szczecin and Organised by Sail Training International, when it comes to Scotland from the 9-24 July 2011 with over £100,000 worth of funding.

Greenock will welcome over 70 Tall ships, with over 3000 crew from the 9-12 July with activities on-shore for visitors and crews alike, embracing cultural, arts, and heritage. The ships then set sail for a Cruise in Company on the 12 July where they have nine days to make their way to Lerwick, with a choice of 12 guest harbours along the scenic west coast of Scotland and Isles for them to visit en-route.

Upon arrival in Lerwick on 21 July, a four-day celebration will take place for everyone to enjoy before the crews switch into race mode and head for Stavanger in Norway.

VisitScotland Chairman, Mike Cantlay, said: “Tourism has the potential to lead economic growth in Scotland, it’s the lifeblood of local economies and partnership working has an absolutely fundamental part to play.  For every £1 invested in marketing we generate over £20 in additional tourism revenue for Scotland.

“It’s encouraging to see this sort of activity with Local Authorities, charities and other partners and this level of investment - I’m delighted we can match their enthusiasm with tangible marketing support. The Tall Ships will undoubtedly bring tangible economic benefits not only to communities in Greenock and Shetland but have the potential to have a knock-on effect right across the country.”

The event was last held in Scotland in 1999 and the 2011 staging is set to be bigger and better. Along with strong and supportive investment from both Inverclyde and Shetland Islands council’s, the International Programme will provide funding to both Greenock and Lerwick to aide their marketing and PR activities, and an economic assessment study. The Cruise in Company will benefit from the National Programme to help with activities from the 12-21 July.

Sail Inverclyde Chairman David Wilson said, “We are extremely grateful for this level of investment by EventScotland. It will be an invaluable contribution to ensuring the success of this event. The funding will be used to update the Tall Ships Greenock 2011 website and to carry out an economic appraisal during and immediately after the event.

“The event is a huge asset to Greenock and the surrounding economy. Indeed, in 1999 the event generated new expenditure of £8.3m in Inverclyde and £7.5m in Renfrewshire. Similarly, Waterford received a direct economic boost of over E30m when hosting the event in 2005.”

Fiona Dally, Project Manager for The Tall Ships Races 2011- Lerwick “We are delighted to have secured funds to support our event in Shetland and look forward to delivering a very exciting programme of activities for crew and visitors during their stay in Lerwick.  We aim to attract over 70 Tall Ships from up to 20 countries around the world and offer an excellent setting for spectators and crew within Lerwick Harbour for a celebration of local and international culture during the host port visit.”

Paul Bush OBE, Chief Executive Officer for EventScotland echoed Cantlay’s comments saying, “The Tall Ship Races 2011 is an event that will create an exciting spectacle for all those involved or who attend the celebrations at Greenock, Lerwick or one of the host Cruise in Company guest harbours. EventScotland are delighted to be supporting the Tall Ships return to Scotland this year and as we look forward to the Year of Islands, this event is set to be a marquee event on the national and international events calendar.”