BLYTH TALL SHIPS: Motly crew take over Regatta

Timid Vikings, Mischief La-Bas. Picture by Paddy Bonner.
Timid Vikings, Mischief La-Bas. Picture by Paddy Bonner.

Visitors are likely to experience some very interesting characters at the seaside during the North Sea Tall Ships Regatta Blyth.

A wonderful motley crew of street theatre acts has been confirmed to perform at the Regatta which takes place during the August Bank Holiday – Friday, August 26, to Monday, August 29.

The entertainment line-up includes a flock of giant seagulls, a pair of mermaids, a Jack Sparrow look-a-like and off-the-wall comedy from The Cod Choir (Grand Theatre of Lemmings).

Also set to sail in to Northumberland for the Regatta are The Timid Vikings of Reknaestuff, a performance by street theatre company, Mischief La-Bas.

These friendly and sympathetic Norse people do not destroy the towns and villages in their path but will be offering handshakes, crèche facilities, dog-walking and apologising in song for the behaviour of their ancestors.

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

Coun Val Tyler, cabinet member for arts, leisure and culture at Northumberland County Council, said: “The street theatre is just one of the highlights of this wonderful free event for all the family which offers a fabulous variety of entertainment across five zones.

“I’m sure that our residents and visitors are going to love the range of entertainers performing at the Regatta, bringing a touch of the Glastonbury Festival to Northumberland.”

Also appearing at the Regatta will be Dan Fox and his boom bike – a creative musical genius on a tricycle, and a couple of colourful tea-ladies with more than just a twist of lemon.

Another star attraction will be the creation of a series of seaside sculptures on the beach by arts company, Sand In Your Eye, who specialize in making themed sculptures from sand.

Martin Lawlor, chief executive, Port of Blyth, said: “The street theatre is a terrific addition to the free Regatta attractions on offer and visitors will be able to enjoy performances from some of the best and funniest entertainers in the UK.”

• Ship-shape poems – join the writing crew!

Active Northumberland libraries are running a poetry competition to celebrate The Tall Ships Regatta.

Poems on any aspect of the sea or seafaring life are welcome, whether it’s pirates, ships, traditional or modern industries, local history or any aspect of living with the sea.

There are two categories, one for children aged eight to 15, and one for adults aged 16 or over.

It is free to enter, and details and entry forms are available online at www.mylibrary.co.uk or at your local library.

The competition is open until Friday, July 29.

The winning poems will be published online in time for the Tall Ships Regatta via www.mylibrary.co.uk and the Northern Poetry Library website at: http://northernpoetrylibrary.org.uk