At the launch of The Festival at Sea are, from left, rear commodore yachting at the Royal Yacht Squadron David Aisher, chief executive for Visit Isle of Wight David Thornton, competition winner Veronica Giblin and event organiser Mary Scott-Jackson.
THE Isle of Wight was riding on the crest of a wave over the weekend as its maritime heritage was celebrated with the launch of the first Festival of the Sea.
Firing the starting gun to begin the event — literally — was Veronica Giblin, from Ventnor, who fired one of the famous cannons at the Royal Yacht Squadron, Cowes, on Saturday to begin The Little Britain Challenge Cup yacht race.
Veronica won a competition to begin the race, which kick-started nine days of events across the Island marking its maritime connections.
Veronica and her partner were then whisked away to experience an hour in the race’s official press boat, where she viewed 90 yachts battling it out in The Solent.
They were then taken for lunch at The Spyglass Inn, Ventnor, where they were treated to lunch.
On the same day, the inn also played host to a Songs of the Sea and Shanty Festival where customers were treated to an afternoon and evening of nautical music.
A host of other events and activities are taking place across the Island as part of the festival, which runs until Sunday, September 22, and is being showcased by the tourism organisation, Visit Isle of Wight.
Events include sunset cruises and seafood suppers, nautical walks, talks and bicycle rides all offering a close quarters view of the Island’s 64 miles of coastline and beach resorts.
For full reporte and pictures, see this Friday's County Press.
All events can be viewed on the Visit IW website www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/events/festival-of-the-sea