To make the most of the resort's Olympic legacy

Spirit of the Sea is a major new event in South Dorset bringing together a diverse range of marine-themed festivals, parties and exhibitions plus high profile competitive sailing and watersports.

The organisers, a team of representatives from Dorset business, government, clubs and organisations, intend to develop the event year on year.

Their objective is to make a significant contribution to the overall legacy of Weymouth’s role as the sailing venue for the London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games.

Gary Fooks, Spirit of the Sea Chairman and Dorset 2012 Legacy Manager, explains: “With this new legacy event, we are following the example of the 1972 Olympic sailing host, Kiel, where their maritime festival has grown to be one of the biggest and most successful in Northern Europe, generating ?80 million into the local economy annually.

“The long-term vision for Spirit of the Sea will be one that not only highlights and embraces our maritime heritage, but also creates a strong cultural and economic Olympic legacy for Dorset’s future. I am delighted at the number of great ideas that are already being developed.”

The programme already includes a MarineEx Trade Show, Henri-Lloyd Weymouth Regatta, World Moth and J24 National Sailing Championships, Dorset Seafood Festival, try sailing with Sail Laser, Weymouth Maritime Modelling Festival, Western Counties Open Water Swimming Championships, The Big Gig rowing regatta, Three Sheets to the Wind’ party at the Nothe, special activities and exhibition at the Chesil Bank and Fleet Nature Reserve, Weymouth Museum exhibition ‘All the Fun of the Seaside’, live music including a nine-day Weymouth ‘Beach Live’, street entertainment, a visit from the tall ship Earl of Pembroke who will offer day sails and a children’s carnival procession called Moving Tide.

Cllr Kate Wheller, Weymouth & Portland brief holder for Leisure, Tourism & Community Facilities, says: “The Council is delighted to support Spirit of the Sea, an event leading the way in partnership working among local people. This cohesive approach is the key to achieving the vibrant future this borough is destined for.”

www.spiritofthesea.org.uk