The Co-operative sets sail to suppport Lerwick leg of The Tall Ships Races 2011

The Co-operative is supporting Lerwick, host port for The Tall Ships Races 2011 with a £6,000 sponsorship deal which will include sponsoring the Liaison Officers and volunteers uniforms throughout the event.

The Co-operativeThe Tall Ships Races, presented by Szczecin and organised by Sail Training International, runs from 30 June until 8 August, with the Tall Ships visiting Lerwick, Shetland, from Thursday, 21 July, until Sunday, 24 July.

Every year The Tall Ships Races relies on local volunteers to help with the smooth running of the host port visits which attract thousands of visitors annually.  Liaison officers will be assigned to a ship to support it throughout their visit and are tasked with ensuring they have a successful visit.  Other roles for the volunteers include event sales and information, stewards/marshals and PSV drivers.

Tor Justad, Co-operative and Membership Officer for Northern Scotland and Islands, said: “The Co-operative is committed to making a real contribution to the local community and we are delighted to support one of the most important events on Shetland’s calendar in recent years.”

Around 50 ships have already signed up to take part, including the STS Mir from Russia, one of the world’s largest Tall Ships, and also Cisne Branco, a naval Tall Ship which will sail all the way from Brazil.

More than 2,500 crew, from 12 countries, and 10,000 visitors are expected at the summer event, which will also see the Tall Ships visit guest harbours at Fair Isle, Unst, Yell, Whalsay and Scalloway as part of the Cruise in Company leg.

Fiona Dally, project manager for The Tall Ships Races 2011 – Lerwick, said: “The Tall Ships Races 2011 – Lerwick is set to be the biggest event in Shetland’s calendar and we’re delighted that the Co-operative Group is supporting us.  Without the generous sponsorship of local businesses, we would be unable to provide such a fantastic platform for these magnificent ships when they visit in July.”

The Co-operative, which has two food stores on Shetland, at Lerwick and Brae, is supporting the iconic event with £6,000 in sponsorship. Staff from the two stores have also signed up to join the 100 volunteers needed to help make the event a success.

For more information on becoming a sponsor click here.