BLYTH TALL SHIPS: Volunteers in place for Regatta

A volunteer climbs the mast on the Bark Europa Eu exchange 2012.
A volunteer climbs the mast on the Bark Europa Eu exchange 2012.
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A full team of volunteers have been recruited to help make The North Sea Tall Ships Regatta extra special.

Organisers put out a call for would-be volunteers four months ago and received a wave of applications.

A total of 140 volunteers have been recruited over the four event days at Blyth.

They make up Ship Liaison Officers (SLOs), Town Hosts, Event Liaison Officers (ELOs) and Technical Liaison Officers (TLOs).

The volunteers will be wearing yellow, turquoise and red polo-shirts.

Northumberland County Council, in partnership with the Port of Blyth and Sail Training International, is hosting the prestigious Regatta with Fergusons of Blyth as the Principal Sponsor.

Coun Val Tyler, cabinet member for arts, leisure and culture, said: “We have a superb team of friendly, reliable volunteers who will play a vital role assisting the organisers, and helping the crews, residents and visitors to have a wonderful bank holiday.

“It will be a busy weekend but it’ll also be fun and very rewarding. The ship and land-based volunteers will gain a wealth of experience while helping to deliver a world-class event.”

The ship-based SLOs will be working with the ships and their crews providing essential communications between them and Sail Training International and the event team.

Carol Bird and her husband John, both 71 and from Amble, will be working as Ship Liaison Officers.

She said: “I’m really excited about the Tall Ships Regatta.

“We love yachting and we’re really looking forward to seeing the Tall Ships sailing into Blyth and meeting the international crews and being part of this magical event.”

Volunteer Aillie Osborne, 48, from Ulgham, will be a volunteer within hospitality.

She said: “I’m excited that the Regatta is just over a month away now and I’m really looking forward to being part of the team.”

Michael Allen, 55 from Blyth, will be an ELO.

He said: “It is amazing to have this international event on our doorstep and being a volunteer is a great opportunity to be a part of it. I can’t wait.”

The Event Liaison Officers will be supporting the Event Managers and the arts cultural program, and the ‘Town Hosts’ will be providing tourism advice and guidance to visitors.

Up to 30 Tall Ships are expected to gather at Blyth for the Regatta which takes place between August 26 and 29.

Martin Lawlor, chief executive, Port of Blyth, said: “Volunteers are going to play an important role working on the land and watersides of the event, helping event visitors and the international crews of the Tall Ships to have an enjoyable visit to the county.”

Elsewhere, there are still places on board five of the tall ships – Vega Gamleby, Tomidi, Morgenster, Kapitan Borchardt and Thalassa.

For more information visit www.tallshipsblyth2016.com/jointheadventure#info