WITH just days to go before Arbroath Sea Fest splashes into action at Arbroath Harbour, The Declaration Band, one of several top local bands playing at the annual celebration of the town’s maritime heritage, held a brief rehearsal on Beacon Green on Monday.
“We are delighted to be playing at Arbroath Sea Fest,” said Ben Dunn, the band’s vocalist. “There’s always such a great atmosphere and we’re really looking forward to entertaining the crowds on both days of Sea Fest with a rousing selection of our favourite musical numbers.”
Other bands playing at the event include Bygones, sea shanty specialists Kimber’s Men, Lochnagar, who will be performing a tribute to The Corries on Sea Fest Sunday, and ‘The Trade’.
To tie in with this year’s wartime theme, The Sellars Brothers Swing Seven will be providing 1940s-style entertainment with the sounds of the big bands and there will also be performances by Arbroath Instrumental Band, The Limelight Company and the local Sea Cadets Band.
In addition, there will be a Wartime Canteen, manned by Arbroath Abbey Timethemes members in Second World War uniforms, and a display of 1940s vehicles and wartime artefacts, courtesy of Strathmore Vintage Vehicle Club and Montrose Air Station Heritage Centre.
Several historic fishing boats will be sailing into the harbour, including the North East Maritime Trust’s Sovereign, Favourite and Rachel Douglas, which are very similar to the boats which fished out of Arbroath Harbour in the 1940s.
“These boats are among perhaps only ten survivors of their type and have been extensively restored to how they looked 60 years ago, when nearly all our harbours had a fleet of these seine or ring netters,” said Peter Weightman of North East Maritime Trust. “It’s great to return to the former fishing grounds of these old boats and to go to a port where they’re appreciated - and they’re certainly appreciated at Arbroath!”
Gates open at 10 a.m. on Saturday, August 4, and 11 a.m. on Sunday, August 5, with the admission charge of £3 (children under the age of five free) including children’s activities such as free face painting, the chance to see birds of prey at close quarters and fascinating tales from the Blether Tay-gither story-tellers.
Other highlights include the launch of the Arbroath Lifeboat at 2.30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, freshly-smoked Arbroath Smokies and, as always, a great selection of stalls, demonstrations and funfair rides.
For more information about Arbroath Sea Fest 2012 visit www.arbroathseafest.co.uk.