Stromness Spirit of the Sea

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Last year there was also a new event: Stromness Spirit of the Sea, which it is hoped will continue this year, and we’ll look forward to posting up an update. In the meantime, we have a look back at an event that highlighted the town’s long maritime connection – past, present and future.

There’s an opportunity right after the Festival for further enjoyment, in the unique setting of the town of Stromness.

Stromness Spirit of the Sea is a new three-day event developed to celebrate the town’s long connection with the sea, from the great days of sail to the new horizons of wave and tidal energy.

There will be stories of voyages on stormy seas, of life in the lighthouse service, and whaling tales and songs. There will be guided walks through the winding closes of the town and around the piers and jetties on the harbour. And there be an opportunity to go aboard the Isabella Fortuna, the oldest fishing boat in Scotland, to take a seafront tour on the MV Lady Rose, and to see the lighthouse ship Pharos and the Stromness and Longhope lifeboats.

Music will be provided by various groups including Barluath, a 6-piece Celtic folk band from Glasgow. There will be seafood, Orkney fish and chips, and home bakes and tea, and daily activities for children, including stories, puppetry and working with clay.

Bus tours to Billia Croo will provide an opportunity to see the work of EMEC, the European Marine Energy Centre, and to hear about the varied wave and tidal power devices that are now on site for testing.

Stromness Spirit of the Sea is the result of an initiative by the Stromness Heritage Guides, who came together in 2010 to promote the town and its maritime heritage. Groups and businesses have responded with the traditional Stromness spirit of making things happen for the good of the town.

For visitors and local people alike, it is an opportunity to enjoy food and drink and music, and to look out on a harbour which over the centuries has held Captain Cook’s ships, whalers bound for Greenland, and the Hudson’s Bay Company’s vessels.

The event’s website shows panoramic scenes and lists events at www.stromness-spirit.co.uk.