Weymouth To Host UK's First Literary Maritime Festival

Weymouth Landscape

Published at 8:00am 2nd March 2016.

Weymouth will soon welcome the UK’s only dedicated maritime literary festival and The Weymouth BID has pledged support by investing £1000.00 into the event.

Weymouth is to host the UK's only dedicated maritime literary festival.

Weymouth BID are putting one thousand pounds into support the event which will be held around the harbour on the 12 - 14 March, 2016.

Festival goers will be able to meet some of Britain's best maritime authors.

Nigel Reed, Weymouth BID Manager said "The organisers of the Weymouth Leviathan Maritime Literary Festival approached the bid Board for funding of £1000 which would be used to promote this new maritime event in the town.  It is hoped that the festival will draw a new audience into Weymouth and it complies with the Weymouth BID business plan in terms of attracting visitors into the town in the shoulder season.  This is an exciting event as it's the only maritime literary festival to be held in the UK.  There is still time for local businesses to get involved in the festival, all they need to do is view the website and get in touch with the organisers"."

A selection of confirmed authors and talks featuring in the Weymouth Leviathan programme:
o    Dr James Davey, Curator of Naval History at the National Maritime Museum, 'In Nelson's Wake'
o    Barbara Tomlinson, Curator Emeritus at the National Maritime Museum, 'Heroism of the shipwrecked'
o    Richard Dunn, Senior Curator for the History of Science at the National Maritime Museum, 'Re-finding longitude'
o    David Childs CBE, former Development Director of the Mary Rose Trust and author of The Warship Mary Rose, 'Fighting the French'
o    Richard Woodman, LVO, board director of Trinity House and author of 50 books, 'The Making of a Sea Officer in Fact and Fiction'
o    Philip Hoare, BBC presenter, award winning author and co-curator of Moby-Dick Big Read, 'The Sea Inside'
o    Tom Cunliffe, journalist, author and BBC broadcaster, 'In the Wake of Heroes'
o    J D Davies, award winning historian, author of the acclaimed naval historical fiction series, The Journals of Matthew Quinton, 'Samuel Pepys and the 'Gentleman Captains' of Charles II's Navy'
o    Julian Stockwin, acclaimed author of the Kydd series of historical novels, 'The Real Jack Tar'
o    Antoine Vanner, author of the four-part Dawlish Chronicles, 'Hazard in Nautical Fiction'

"On behalf of levy payers, the BID has set bold objectives for the town and is working with great commitment to deliver their long term strategy. Part of that strategy is to enhance Weymouth's reputation across the country, attracting new types of visitors, with higher disposable income, to come to the town throughout the year. We've dedicated the levy payers' money we've been granted to advertise the cultural, historic and maritime attractions the town offers right across Southern England and South Wales," said James Farquharson, festival director. "We fervently hope that Weymouth Leviathan will become a key part of the town's cultural offer, helping develop its position as the best tourist destination on the South Coast into the future."   
The festival organisers have confirmed a range of further entertainment and performances:

o    Children's literary festival, including theatrical performance, The Fisherman's Daughter.
o    Sound installation, 'Moby-Dick Big Read', inside Weymouth's large harbourside church, Holy Trinity
o    Maritime literature award for first editions published since 1 March 2015
o    Dorset Wrecks, sea shanties, bringing the sound of the sea to introductions and intervals
o    Island Voices, Portland Community Choir, original songs of the sea and Portland

The full festival programme can be found on the website.

Tickets will be available to buy at the door but to ensure entry, purchase in advance is recommended either at the festival website or at the Royal Dorset Yacht Club, Custom House Quay, Weymouth :