Brest Maritime Festival 2016
David and Liz of One Small Candle were delighted to be asked to represent Plymouth at the Brest Maritime Festival this July. We thank Sarah Gibson, Plymouth Waterfront Partnership Manager, for organising everything and inviting us.
The journey to Roscoff aboard Brittany Ferries ship Amorique was extremely pleasant with a wonderfully clean cabin along with an en-suite WC and shower. We were pleasantly surprised at the Ferry employee's and their "no problem - can do" attitude.
On arrival at Roscoff we were met and greeted by quite a number of very polite, smiling and welcoming people. Can't beat a first impression.
Sarah Gibson picked us up at Roscoff and drove us to our hotel in Brest. We were amazed at the immaculate highway and the well manicured and quirky gardens on roundabouts and industrial units. So clean.
After a visit to the "Plymouth stand" near the hotel we retired for the night - it was baking hot!
The morning of our appearance as Plymouth's Pilgrim Ambassadors Liz and I had a little hiug and then walked out of the hotel....in our heavy wool costumes we were met with a wall of heat... the temperature was in the high 20s already. We were stopped countless times to have our photograph taken by throngs of festival go'ers.
We arrived at the Plymouth stand, on a lovely Quay opposite the main stage, and were greeted by Sky Cole and French speaking Patrick Howes who were busy chatting and smiling with the endless crowds of people strolling by.
Liz and David immediately decided to stand "out front" with Plymouth brochures making people feel welcome to this little part of Plymouth...in France. The smiling Pilgrims handed out countless brochures and Mayflower 400 flags to so very many people that we ran out by midday! Thankfully Sarah produced a box of emergency brochures sent by Clare at the Barbican Tourist Information Centre...off we went again ... brochures and bon jours!
The Plymouth Pipe Band, Plymouth Maids, Plymouth Morris Men, Cornwall Wreckers Morris Dancers and the Falmouth Pipe Band drew big crowds along with the Lord Mayor of Plymouth Pauline Murphy and Brian Vincent who were accompanied by the elected Mayor of Brest and none other than Sir Robin Knox - Johnson.
The event was a massive success with numbers of up to a million people attending! We were so busy, hot, sweaty and, yes, knackered at the end of the day! The Brest Maritime Festival 2016 was a huge party and David couldn't help but state that Plymouth should take over the Quay area in 2020.... Thank you to everyone!
Thank you for stopping by
David and Liz