Ships accolade for Hartlepool

Tall ships at last year's festival
Tall ships at last year's festival

THE three organisations behind last summer’s tall ships spectacle in Hartlepool have landed national recognition.

Hartlepool Borough Council, PD Ports and Hartlepool Marina are celebrating after being highly commended in the Municipal Journal’s Public Private Partnership Achievement of the Year award.

Delighted Hartlepool Mayor Stuart Drummond said: “It is very pleasing that the excellent partnership working has been recognised at a national level.

“Hosting the event provided a wonderful opportunity to showcase the town to hundreds of thousands of visitors and promote the port and the marina to potential new customers.”

Hartlepool was in the international spotlight last August when it played host to 59 tall ships and 2,000 crew members from around the world.

The award submission to the Municipal Journal said: “We developed a strong project management team comprising a dedicated tall ships office which drew on the expertise and resources of Hartlepool Borough Council and partners in PD Ports, Hartlepool Marina, and other private and public organisations.”

It described how the event attracted 970,000 visitors and 717,800 of those were from outside Hartlepool.

The event created £26.5m for the local economy, and saw every hotel bed space taken in Hartlepool – as well as a nine per cent increase in hotel bed space across the rest of the Tees Valley.

The event also created almost £300,000 in sponsorship.

Hartlepool’s submission to the awards added: “Perceptions of Hartlepool were changed as result of us hosting the event and it has encouraged people to consider a return trip which will provide a boost to the tourism industry.

“Moreover positive media coverage of the event was extensive and will bring benefits to Hartlepool in the future.

“An excellent working relationship has been developed between the three key public-private partners and will no doubt lead to future productive collaborations on large scale projects and events.”