The chief executive of Blyth Tall Ship project says that the four-day regatta will put the town on the map.
The ambitious project is restoring a 100-year-old Baltic Trader in a bid to recreate the original voyage of Captain William Smith that discovered the first land in Antarctica in 1819. Captain Smith’s vessel was built in Blyth after he raised funds to do so.
As a result, Blyth Tall Ship is helping to transform the lives of young people through heritage boat-building. Volunteers – including unemployed teenagers and experienced maritime engineers – are working on the restoration project.
And speaking from the group’s workshop in the town, chief executive Clive Gray is delighted that Blyth is hosting the Tall Ships Regatta, which runs from today until Monday.
He said: “It’s one of the biggest things that has happened in the county. It shows that Blyth is mature enough and is in a good enough place to host something of this nature.
“It’s a fantastic event and it puts Blyth on the map. Long term, it will change the way that people think about the town and give people a lot of confidence in the town.”
For updates, pictures, videos and interviews from the regatta, follow our live feed throughout the weekend.