River Festival sails into city

One of the biggest maritime festivals in the UK returns to the Liverpool waterfront this weekend.

As part of the Mersey River Festival from Friday 7 – Sunday 9 June, half a dozen Tall Ships will grace the River Mersey as Liverpool becomes one of the host ports for the Irish Sea Fleet – Maritime Tour 2013. The weekend will not only see ships from Ireland, but also from Denmark, France and Belgium.

The waterfront will come alive with aerobatic displays from Russian aircrafts, stunning live street theatre, wake boarders and a canoe polo tournament.

And this year sees an international flavour to the weekend as a World Music Stage will be set up at the Pier Head playing authentic African, Indian and Arabic music and dance for all to enjoy.

Cabinet member for culture and tourism, Councillor Wendy Simon, said: “The Mersey River Festival is always hugely popular, attracting hundreds of thousands of people.

“The River Festival is one of many occasions this year to showcase our historic waterfront to visitors from all over the world.

“As in previous years there will be something for all the family to enjoy so I would encourage as many people as possible to spend a day or two at the Pier Head, soak up the wonderful atmosphere and celebrate the return of this much loved and popular festival.”

The River Festival will also coincide with Music on the Waterfront, building on the successful partnership with Smooth Radio established last year. After welcoming 20,000 people to the Pier Head in 2012, Love Live Music returns with a bigger line up than ever – and it’s all free. Big names such as Katie Melua, Nell Bryden, Russell Watson, KT Tunstall and local band The Christians will perform.

On Sunday 9 June the city will host Brouhaha International Carnival, Liverpool Arab Arts Festival and Sights and Sounds of India, bringing a splash of colour and music to the Albert Dock and Pier Head.

To see the full programme visit http://www.itsliverpool.com/culture/event/mersey-river-festival/