Ipswich: Pirate capers and maritime fun on offer at maritime festival

Keep your eyes peeled if you’re visiting Ipswich Waterfront this week, there’s a pirate on the loose!

The dastardly Captain Hook will tomorrow be taking a break from Never Land to kick-start Ipswich’s much-anticipated Maritime Festival.

The swashbuckling star of this year’s Regent Theatre pantomime, played by ‘The Bill’ actor Christopher Ellison, will sail in aboard a pirate ship to open what promises to be an exciting bank holiday weekend.

Events include sea shanty singers, a craft market and a continental food market. There will also be twelve spectacular sailing ships moored near the UCS building.

And for real ale lovers, to popular Ipswich Beer Festival will open today and run throughout the weekend.

The Maritime Festival will round off a fun-packed week of events throughout the town – part of the Celebrate Ipswich Festival.

A free family fun day of treasure hunts and challenges is running tomorrow at Tower Ramparts in Tavern Street, from 11am to 4pm.

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And Hook won’t be the only pirate swapping his sea legs for the shore. Jack Sparrow lookalike Melo will also be making an appearance at the Quayside restaurant and bar tomorrow for a fun-themed night.

Ipswich Central chief executive Paul Clement said: “The Maritime Festival is a date that sits not only in the calendar of the residents of Ipswich or even Suffolk, it attracts visitors from all over the country.

“Coming on the back of a fabulous week of events throughout the town to celebrate Ipswich the Maritime Festival is a glorious showcase of the magnificent Ipswich Waterfront.

“With the Maritime event stretching over four days this year I am hopeful of the event being bigger and better than ever before.”

And Mayor of Ipswich Hamil Clarke said added: “Maritime Ipswich brings the week-long Celebrate Ipswich Festival to a close and it promises to be a great event for all the family. We thought it would be a good idea to bring Cap’n Hook along – I have no idea what will happen when he comes ashore but it promises to be pirate-packed pandemonium!”

The height of the spectacle will see a grand fireworks finale on Sunday evening, illuminating the skies above the town’s Waterfront and bringing festivities to a close with a bang.