The organisers of the Shetland part of the Tall Ships Races in 2011 have secured £25,000 in funding from EventScotland, the national events agency.
The cash will go towards marketing and public relations support for the Cruise in Company leg of the event, between Greenock and Lerwick from 12th to 21st July.
During the cruise the fleet will have the opportunity to enjoy invigorating sailing, amazing coastal scenery and a warm welcome from 12 selected guest harbours.
Shetland Tall Ships 2011 Ltd project manager Fiona Dally said: “The financial support from EventScotland gives us an excellent opportunity to market and promote the Cruise in Company which will be a key asset for attracting ships to participate in the races.
“We also hope that we can attract a significant number of visitors to attend the events which will be prepared in each of the guest harbours during July 2011 and get as many young people to actively participate in the races onboard these spectacular ships.”
EventScotland chief operating officer Paul Bush said: “Scotland attracts thousands of avid sailors to its coasts each year and sailing as a sport generates significant economic impact for the country annually. The Tall Ships Races will bring a huge number of sailors and sailing enthusiasts to the north and west coasts of Scotland, many of whom will be international visitors.
“EventScotland has supported sailing in Scotland through a variety of events which have raised awareness of the nation’s first class facilities and unrivalled environment for the sport. The route from Greenock to Lerwick, planned for this race will provide a sensational backdrop to this leg of the event and really put the area on the map as a sailing destination.”
As part of its marketing and pubilc relations plan, Shetland Tall Ships 2011 Ltd is launching the Cruise in Company brochure at the annual Sail Training International Conference from 19th to 21st November in Istanbul, Turkey. Representative from Shetland and Scottish ports will be present to promote the host ports and guest harbours who are keen to welcome ships during the sail between the host ports, Greenock and Lerwick.