The Tall Ships Festival

Yesterday, my wife and I went down to Greenwich to see the Parade of Sail – the finale to the five-day Tall Ships Festival.

The Tall Ships Festival is an annual event in London, but this year’s event has seen the largest fleet of tall ships assembled in London for 25 years. The vessels arrived in London after a race from Falmouth, Cornwall and have been moored across four sites: Greenwich Maritime, Greenwich Peninsula, West India Dock at Canary Wharf and Woolwich for the last few days. Over the course of five days there have been opportunities to visit many of the ships, and enjoy the festival atmosphere including live music, entertainment, stalls and other activities. And the weather has been fine.

_DS81347The finale was worth waiting for. Fifty-four ships assembled up-stream of the festival sites and as we arrived one of the stars of the show the Polish three-masted Dar Mlodziezy slipped her moorings on the Greenwich Peninsula and sailed past us to be positioned at the head of the Parade. When she returned a set of sails had been unfurled, and although all the ships were using motor power to proceed down-stream, all had some of their sails unfurled, which added greatly to the magnificence of the sight.

_DS81365The crowds were huge, there wasn’t a spare space in the front row of spectators and quite a few images were only possible by adopting the tactic of holding the camera above everyone else’s heads, employing live view, and ‘hoping’.

_DS81415The ships were of all shapes and sizes from the multi-masted square-rigged tall ships, to ocean-going racing yachts, and Luggers that once would have worked the coastal waters of the UK. And for this race and festival the majority of the crews on these boats were young people, many of them having their first experience of sailing.

_DS81444This was one of those events from which you come away and think: I’m so glad we were there to see that. Below is a gallery of images for you to look through. As always click on the first image and then navigate through.

About LensScaper

Hi - I'm a UK-based photographer who started out 45+ years ago as a lover of landscapes, inspired by my love of outdoor pursuits: skiing, walking and climbing. Now retired, I seldom leave home without a camera and I find images in unexpected places and from different genres. I work on the premise that Photography is Art and that creativity is dependent on the cultivation of 'A Seeing Eye'.
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16 Responses to The Tall Ships Festival

  1. Norma says:

    They are so impressive Andy. Amazing ships!


  2. oneowner says:

    I’ve only been to one of these festivals and it was a lot of fun. Your photos have taken me back to that great day.


  3. Great images Andy, and wonderful subject material


  4. smackedpentax says:

    Great photoshots Andy…I would love to see these


  5. Lisa Gordon says:

    This must have been wonderful, and these ships are just magnificent!


  6. Andy, what a great set my friend!! What an event, it’s obvious you enjoyed it immensely!


  7. Chillbrook says:

    Magnificent aren’t they? A superb set of photos Andy!


  8. You did them proud Andy! Something so humbling about the arrival of these ships with the billowing sails and the romance of years gone by!


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