From international boat experts to the world’s fastest knitter, the 16th annual Scottish Traditional Boat Festival will celebrate all aspects of Scottish maritime heritage from 2nd -5th July in Portsoy.
A major event in the Homecoming 2009 calendar, the festival has been extended by two days this year to include a symposium of fascinating speakers who will talk about nautical traditions ranging from early boat building to sea shanty and gansey knitting.
Nigel Irens, world-renowned yacht designer who designed Ellen McArthur’s yacht, will be discussing current and future design as part of the speaker’s symposium. Bjorn Arve and Johanne Tvedten from Norway will give children opportunities to discover boat-building skills and demonstrate some of the traditional techniques.
Knitting and weaving will also play a major part of the festival to celebrate maritime traditions. The world’s fastest knitter Hazel Tindall will be demonstrating, and Norman Kennedy, who is known across the world for his skills in knitting, weaving and singing, will be making the trip from America back home to his north east roots for the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival.
Music will also play a key element at the festival. This year the theme will be around shanty and will include a programme of music, song and dance that will feature traditional musicians and singers from around the world, including Norman Kennedy and shanty expert Bob Walser.
As well as demonstrations and performances, people can go to the Food Fair at the Wally Green to sample the finest produce from a range of local and national Scottish producers. There will also be family fun at Adventure Land at Loch Soy and for the more energetic there’s the 2k Fun Run and the 10K and 20k Road Runs on the Sunday morning.
The renovated Salmon Bothy, which opened at last year’s festival, is now a fully-fledged museum of Portsoy’s history and the salmon fishery. It will showcase exhibitions, demonstrations and entertainment during the event and its fully equipped genealogical rearch facility will prove popular with visitors wishing to explore their roots in this year of Homecoming. The festival brings together heritage and the celebration of maritime traditions with a variety of activities to suit everyone, making this an exciting and unmissable event.
For more information about the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival visit www.scottishtraditionalboatfestival.co.uk or call 01261 842951.
The Scottish Traditional Boat Festival is supported by VisitScotland and Event Scotland as part of the Homecoming Scotland 2009 initiative.