Whitehaven Festival 2013

Whitehaven is preparing for their annual festival, with more than 200,000 people expected over the weekend.

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Whitehaven Festival underway

Boats in the harbour at Whitehaven Credit: ITV News Border

The annual Whitehaven Festival gets underway in Cumbria today.

The three day event, now in its 14th year, attracts around 200,000 visitors over the weekend and brings in around £5 million to the local economy.

It is one of the largest community festivals in the UK and is and features an eclectic mix of Tall Ships, markets, street theatre, fairgrounds, Celebrity Chefs and live music on two stages.

Headliners this year are McFly, Sweet, Slade and Les McKeown's Bay City Rollers.

Cumbrian Officer sails Navy ship into Whitehaven

The HMS Pursuer on patrol Credit: Royal Navy

A Cumbrian Royal Navy Officer is sailing his own ship into his home county in support of the Whitehaven Festival.

33-year-old Gary Bickley, who is the Commanding Officer of HMS Pursuer, is visiting his home town of Workington before sailing into Whitehaven.

HMS Pursuer will be open to visitors attending the annual festival as part of the weekend’s celebrations.

A second P2000 fast patrol boat, HMS Archer, under the command of Lieutenant James Martin, will also support the festival.

Commanding Officer Gary Bickley Credit: ITV News Border

Officer Bickley said:

“It gives me a huge amount of joy tobring HMS Pursuer into my home town as her commanding officer.

"I’m looking forward to being able to show her off to my friends and family and to local people while supporting the Whitehaven Festival over the weekend."

The HMS Pursuer Credit: ITV News Border

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