Programme for Liverpool waterfront spectacular unveiled

TALL Ships, a shanty festival, regattas, and a Royal Wedding salute performed by historic canal boats will all feature in a maritime extravaganza to take place on Liverpool’s waterfront.

Details for the 10-day event are unveiled ahead of the start of the festival later this month.

Spring on the Waterfront was put together as a last minute replacement for the Liverpool Boat Show, after it was controversially scrapped earlier this year.

The new programme covers the same dates - April 29 to May 8 - and features more than 100 free events, many of which were originally scheduled for the Boat Show.

Liverpool city council worked with Liverpool Vision, the city’s economic development company, to pull together the replacement event at the eleventh hour.

The council’s head of events, Judith Feather, said: "Spring on the Waterfront is set to be a fantastic event and it’s a real credit to the maritime industry and other regional organisations who have worked with us at short notice to make it possible.

"The number of free activities on offer means there really is something for everyone, and it’s a great way of keeping everyone entertained without breaking the bank.

"The event is also a taster of what to expect in September when the hugely popular Mersey River Festival returns. "Our iconic waterfront will be showcased at its very best and we’re looking forward to thousands of people converging on the Pier Head for what will be a wonderful occasion."

Highlights include a visit by some of the world’s most famous Tall Ships, with visitors given the chance to board the ships, watch demonstrations of sailor skills and meet the crew.

The Royal Wedding, which takes place on the opening day of the festival, will be marked by a salute performed by historic canal boats.

The wedding itself will be shown on a giant screen at Liverpool ONE which is also hosting a street party.

The shanty festival will see performers take to a floating stage in Salthouse Dock with local acts joined by performers from the USA and Europe

Yachts will compete in two regattas on the Mersey – the Liverpool Kindred Clubs Regatta and the Royal Mersey Spring Regatta - while canal boats will take over Salthouse Dock, giving everyone the chance to tour some of the historic vessels and see the canal boat tug-of-war.

Water lovers can make the most of free taster sessions of dinghy sailing, windsurfing, wakeboarding, kayaking, canoeing and paddleboards at the Watersports Centre.

A food and drink festival at the Pier Head will showcase local produce, while street theatre will feature entertainment ranging from mime and clowns to jugglers.

Chief executive of Liverpool Vision, Max Steinberg, said: "We’ve had fantastic support from Liverpool businesses and the city is making the best of its main attractions."

"Spring on the Waterfront will not only be a great day out for families, but it will also provide a valuable injection into the economy and showcase our World Heritage Site and magnificent waterfront in the best possible way."

For full details and times of all the events taking place during the festival, visit