Today began one of the biggest shows my birth town of Greenock, in the west coast of Scotland, has put on for many years. The famous Tall Ships have arrived at the historic James Watt Dock and the whole area has taken on a wonderful carnival atmosphere. They last came to Greenock in 1999, when the ships sailed into the East India and Victoria Harbours, spilling over to the Custom House Quay.
This time, however, the extravagana is taking place over the next few days at the site of a multi-million pound development of this historic part of the docks. The A-listed Sugar Warehouses are included in the regeneration and form a back-drop to some of the tall ships this weekend.
Apart from the thousands of visitors descending on the area, it's wonderful to see the variety of crew members from all over the world. Any ship taking part in the Tall Ships Races must have a majority of crew members in the 16 to 25 year old age group, allowing young people to experience the adventure of sailing on the open seas.
With stars such as Lulu and Deacon Blue making a concert appearance, spectacular choreographed evening fireworks, and the Red Arrows display, Greenock is certainly the place to be this weekend. We took the chance to visit this morning before it gets too crowded. And so far, the rain is staying away and the sun is shining! I've posted a bit of history about James Watt on my Regency blog for anyone interested.