Sunday, 6 September 2009
All aboard for the Maritime Festival
I'VE BLOGGED before about the sense of anti-climax at the end of the Wherryman's Way in Great Yarmouth. Thirty-five miles of wherry'n'wonder end in an ASDA car park. It just doesn't hit the spot, although the new monument unveiled earlier this year is a welcome step in the right direction. After all that walking and all that history, you feel you deserve a Yarmouth bedecked in bunting, boats moored from stem to stern along the river and the raucous shout of sea shanties in the air. Amazingly all this is possible ...but only if you time your arrival for the annual Great Yarmouth Maritime Festival. It was my first time this weekend and I was very impressed. It's the nearest my generation will ever get to seeing how South Quay used to look. The place was heaving. I enjoyed the boats and the books and the people; my kids soaked up the freebies in the RSPB and Natural England tents. Not sure about some of those shanties, mind.