Saturday 13 July 2024
 13.2°C   NNE Moderate Breeze
Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

Community / Organisers prepare to welcome thousands to Lerwick for Tall Ships

Cruise ships will also be in town during the Tall Ships – including three on the Thursday

The Nicolson Riddell family, from Lerwick, showing off the range of merchandise as well as the official programme. Photo: Ben Mullay/Shetland Tall Ships Ltd

THOUSANDS of people are expected to line the streets as Lerwick plays host to the long-awaited 2023 Tall Ships Races for four days from Wednesday (26 July).

Over 1,300 crew members will be welcomed for the crew parade and opening ceremony followed by several days of festivities including extensive programmes of musical and family entertainment, sports, tours and activities for locals and visitors alike to enjoy.

The four-day event runs until Saturday 29 July when spectators will again gather for the impressive sight of the Parade of Sail between noon and 3pm as the spectacular 37-strong fleet prepares to leave Lerwick to race to Arendal in Norway.

With the town set to be busy, organiser Shetland Tall Ships Ltd is encouraging the community to come together and enjoy the festivities responsibly.

In addition to locals and visitors enjoying the event, three cruise ships are also expected in Lerwick on the Thursday – bringing many more folk into an already busy town.

There are the 229m Viking Venus and Viking Mars, and the 89m Corinthian.

On the Wednesday of the Tall Ships the 204m AIDAaura will call into Lerwick.

The Friday will see the arrival of the 237m Spirit of Discovery, while the 294m Coral Princess will spend the morning and afternoon in Lerwick on the Saturday.

Project manager Emma Miller said: “After many months of preparation we cannot wait to welcome the ships and their crews with a trademark show of Shetland hospitality.

“From headline concerts with the likes of Peat & Diesel and Tide Lines to an array of family entertainments, crafts and local produce, there should truly be something for all to enjoy.

“We hope everyone has a wonderful time renewing old friendships, making new ones and creating happy memories that can be treasured for many years to come.”

Become a supporter of Shetland News


Road closures will be in place to ensure the safety of the event and its participants.

The Esplanade area will be closed to traffic from 7.30am on Wednesday until 10am on Sunday 30 July, with a four and a half-hour window each morning for delivery vehicles to access event sites and local businesses.

There will be further restrictions for the crew parade on Wednesday afternoon and the parade of sail on Saturday, and full details are available on the Tall Ships Lerwick website.

Provisions have been made for disabled parking in the town centre under Fort Charlotte and at Church Road, as well as the overspill car park at the Co-op supermarket next to Holmsgarth.

A free park and ride service will operate to and from event sites at Holmsgarth and Victoria Pier from remote car parking locations at Sound Primary School, the Anderson High School and along South Lochside.

Meanwhile ticket holders for the three paid entry Holmsgarth concerts – Tide Lines (Thursday), Peat & Diesel (Friday) and Queen II (Saturday) – are reminded that they must exchange their physical ticket for a wristband to ensure they gain access to the arena.

Wristbands can be collected at Mareel on Friday between 12pm-2pm and 4pm-6pm, or any time between 10am and 4pm on Saturday and Sunday. Thereafter they will be available from the event information point at Victoria Pier from 11am on Wednesday.

Official programmes are also now available in a variety of local shops, while merchandise including a range of t-shirts, hoodies and baseball caps are available from Cee & Jays and Intersport.

Blyde Welcome is also selling bags of a Tall Ships special blend of coffee beans.

Regular event updates will be posted on the Tall Ships Lerwick website over the next 10 days.

Shetland News will be providing daily coverage from the event.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.

Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.

Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has  over 600 supporters  who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.

Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -

  • Bring you the headlines as they happen;
  • Stay editorially independent;
  • Give a voice to the community;
  • Grow site traffic further;
  • Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.

If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.



Subscribe to a selection of different newsletters from Shetland News, varying from breaking news delivered on the minute, to a weekly round-up of the opinion posts. All delivered straight to your inbox.

Daily Briefing Newsletter Weekly Highlights Newsletter Opinion Newsletter Life in Shetland Newsletter

JavaScript Required

We're sorry, but Shetland News isn't fully functional without JavaScript enabled.
Head over to the help page for instructions on how to enable JavaScript on your browser.

Your Privacy

We use cookies on our site to improve your experience.
By using our service, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

Browser is out-of-date

Shetland News isn't fully functional with this version of .
Head over to the help page for instructions on updating your browser for more security, improved speed and the best overall experience on this site.

Interested in Notifications?

Get notifications from Shetland News for important and breaking news.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

We're committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to impartial, open and quality local journalism that benefits all residents.

By supporting Shetland News, you play a vital role in ensuring we remain a pivotal resource in supporting the community.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.