Hottest Easter in 70 years brings out the pleasure boaters – Weymouth April 2019

Argenta a luxury Prestige 630s cruiser moored behind Aaran House
Argenta a luxury Prestige 630s cruiser moored behind Aaran House

With temperatures reaching 25 to 27 degC in Weymouth over the weekend, it was the hottest Easter for 70 years. The Harbour was the place to be. Crowds of people thronged the Harbour area, to watch the boats, to enjoy pubs and restaurants and to listen to live music by the Town Bridge. Behind Aaran Guesthouse, we noted a few luxury cruisers in Weymouth Harbour. Nearest to us was Argenta, a Prestige 630s class, costing somewhere from £1.2 to £2million. Further along the harbour were a few other luxury craft (below).

Motor cruisers and fishing vessels in Weymouth in the Hottest Easter for 70 years
Motor cruisers and fishing vessels in Weymouth in the Hottest Easter for 70 years

Tall Ships Irene, Prolific and Royalist visiting Weymouth Harbour, April 2019

Tall Ship Irene

Tall Ship Irene 16.05.19

Tall Ship Irene 16.05.19

It was a very misty day when Tall Ship Irene first came into Weymouth Harbour. One could almost imagine a scene from Stephen King’s film, “The Mist”, with ghostly pirates shuffling along the decks in the fog. Irene was a cargo sailing ship, launched from Bridgwater in Somerset in 1907. She was designed as a Ketch with beaching abilities, so cargo could be more easily handled on river banks inland. without the need of a Harbour Pier. She had a long career hauling cargo, before a period of abandonment and neglect, before being restored as a houseboat. Later, she featured in a number of films and adverts, including “Pirates of the Caribbean” and depicted as “The Flying Dutchman” in the Tony Palmer film “Wagner”. (Extracts from https://classic-sailing.co.uk/article/irene-1907-history-ship). While in Weymouth, Irene was acting as a Sea Cadet training ship on a 2-day stopover.

TS Irene from the stern in fog

TS Irene from the stern in fog

 

TS Royalist

In the previous week, Tall Ship Royalist also moored in Weymouth Harbour, also right behind Aaran Guesthouse. She has been a frequent visitor to Weymouth, often “popping” in for a night or two en route to other Sea Cadet ports around the UK. At nighttime, she is illuminated by uplighters on her masts, which makes for a very pretty sight when strolling around the Harbour.

TS Royalist in Weymouth April 2019

TS Royalist in Weymouth April 2019

Jigging in the Rigging TS Royalist

Jigging in the Rigging TS Royalist sea cadets furling the mainsails

TS Prolific

TS Prolific moored up right behind Aaran Guesthouse last night, leaving around 9:00 am this morning (19th April 2019). Another training ship, she has also been a prolific visitor to Weymouth Harbour and makes a very welcome sight among the fishing vessels and pleasure yachts. She is operated by the Ocean Youth Trust, built in 2005 in the style of traditional herring fishing boats.

TS Prolific viewed from Aaran House guest lounge just 15 yards away

TS Prolific viewed from Aaran House guest lounge just 15 yards away

International Market in Weymouth – 10th till 14th April 2019

International Market in Weymouth Town Centre
International Market in Weymouth Town Centre

On 10th April, an International Market arrived in Weymouth. This was one of dozens of events happening in Weymouth right throughout the year.There were a couple of dozen stalls stretching along St Thomas Street and around into the main shopping square. Several food stores tempted the passers-by – our favourite was the Churros stand! There were also jewellery, souvenirs and carved garden ornaments among the offerings –

Carved wooden garden ornaments
Carved wooden garden ornaments

Nearer to Debenhams, there were stalls selling clothing, shawls, bags, belts, watches and craftware, including polishing “gem”-stones – Something for everyone.

More market stalls in front of Debenhams store
More market stalls in front of Debenhams store

We believe this is probably the biggest (and best!) street Market in Weymouth since the Millenium “Stone” was laid –

The Millenium stone in front of Debenhams in Weymouth
The Millenium stone in the Town Centre in Weymouth

We are looking forward to the next market and all the other events coming this year.

Bright for Sight fun run – Saturday night 13th April 2019

Bright for Sight run has previously been held on Boscombe Beach in Bournemouth and now, they have come to Weymouth. Our first such fun run was held on Saturday night, starting at 8:30pm, alongside the Pavilion Theatre. We strolled across the 50 yards or so to watch the start. Runners were dressed in bright colours and wore flashing lights, wherever they could.

The event was sponsored by Frith’s Opticians and raised over £1300 for Charity. A number of local businesses contributed and individual runners also raised sponsorship money. There were two distances, 5 km and 10 km. We hope this run will be back again soon and become a regular event on the Weymouth calendar.

Weymouth Half-marathon 17th March 2019

The Weymouth Half Marathon race, organised by Just Racing, took place on Sunday, 17th March this year. Up to 1500 competitors took part with results currently recorded up to 890. The race is considered to be a launchpad for the London Marathon so has become very popular. Weymouth is fast becoming a mecca for fun runs and marathon events.

The race started at 9:00 am from the Weymouth Pavilion forecourt, just 50 yards away and carried on along the sea-front to Preston Beach and back. Runners finished back on the Forecourt, a short stroll from our front door. About 500 people gathered to watch in bright sunshine, although a few clouds headed in later. There was a light breeze but race times were very competitive. The winning time was 1 hour, 12 minutes and 53 seconds, by Jacek Cieluszecki. He was followed just 38 seconds later by Jo Corbett and Matt Papa.

Christmas Day Harbour swim in Weymouth

Weymouth Harbour Lions Club swim 25th December 2018

Christmas Day Harbour Swim for Charity, organised by the Lions Club

Every year, Weymouth Lions Club organises a charity swim across the Harbour to raise money for worthwhile causes. In recent years, the numbers of swimmers has risen to 500 or so and up to £20,000 can be raised. There are so many participants, the races have to split into 5 or 6 groups, for safety. Many entrants dress up in fancy costumes (which can be risky as my Nephew Karl found out one year!) The event is fully marshalled and safety crews are present on land and in the water, so everyone is safe.

Of course, if the Harbour Swim feels a bit chilly, then you can always try a spot of Ice Skating outside Debenhams in the Town.

Weymouth Pavilion Theatre programme

RSS Pavilion Theatre events and tickets

Weymouth Pavilion Theatre

When The Ritz burned down in 1954, the current Pavilion Theatre was built in 1958. The complex includes a 1000-seat auditorium, a 600-capacity ballrom and numerous smaller rooms and venues. Some of these can be used as wedding venues or for meetings, etc. In 2013, the reins of management were handed over by Weymouth and Portland Borough Council to a community project team, headed by the current Theatre Manager, Mr Phil Say. Under his leadership, the theatre has blossomed from a “money-pit” into a major attraction, drawing many high-value acts to entertain residents and visitors from far afield. Recently, the external appearance of the building has been dramatically improved in renovations, including a dazzling, ever-changing rainbow external lighting scheme. Inside, there is a newly reopened Piano Bar with much-upgraded features and facilities. The forecourt has been retained and is frequently utilised for sporting events and displays of historic and veteran vehicles and motorbikes.

Trawler Nereus puts into Weymouth Harbour

The Trawler Nereus put into Weymouth Harbour, today around 8:30am, presumably to avoid stormy conditions in the Channel.

Trawler Nereus

Trawler Nereus

Nereus’ registration number is INS172, IMO 9634036, MMSI 235096106, 184 tons, call sign – 2GBQ9. She is a twin-rig, freezer prawn trawler, 19m, completed in 2015 by MacDuff. Just one of many fascinating vessels to be seen in Weymouth Harbour.

Bonfire Night fireworks on Weymouth Beach – 2018

Bonfire Night Fireworks in Weymouth Bay

Bonfire Night fireworks have been a continuing tradition in Weymouth for many years. The bonfire was lit at 7:20pm. Aamazingly, next morning the remains were collected by Weymouth Council for reuse (as far as possible). The fireworks started at 7:45pm. The small pilot boat was the centre of about 15 minutes of fiery and sparkly mayhem as the fireworks lit up the clear night sky.

About 10,000 people watched the display with many also enjoying the chips and drinks available from several stalls along the Esplanade. Many others watched from sea-facing rooms in their guesthouses. We filmed a few short clips from our front doorstep – overlooking the whole Bay and all the pyrotechnics. The massive bonfire itself was just 100 yards away along the Beach.

As in previous years, the event was free . It is just one of the host of great events to be seen from any of the lovely little sea front hotels and guesthouses on Weymouth’s Esplanade. (See https://www.whgla.org.uk for Guesthouse details)