Maryport pulls together in bid to save harbour festival
Last updated at 19:31, Thursday, 28 June 2012
Volunteers worked through the night to try to save Maryport’s first harbour festival from torrential rain and gale force winds.
But the event was called off at about 9pm on Friday after organisers were told to evacuate the harbour side marquees.
Maryport Harbour Festival, organised by the Solway Trust, was due to take place last weekend and include the town’s annual trawler race.
About 30 people battled against the deluge on Friday.
Gary Hampson, organiser of the trawler race, said: “Some of us were on the harbourside by 7am to keep a check on things.
“We decided to postpone the trawler race and take down the two smaller marquees. The plan was to have the trawler race on Sunday instead.
“Maryport should be proud of itself. We were overwhelmed by the support we got from people.
“One of our volunteers got off a boat from the Isle of Man, all dressed up ready to go into town, but he stopped to help us. He got filthy but he didn’t care.”
By Friday evening the marquee seams started coming apart after constant buffeting by the high winds.
An emergency committee meeting at about 9pm was told that the marquee was unsafe and must be vacated immediately.
The decision was made to postpone the entire weekend event. The cost of the postponement is unknown, but Solway Trust members planned to meet last night to set a new date.
Maryport’s rail link with Carlisle was cut off from Saturday morning until Tuesday night after flooding at Wigton and Dalston.
Debris washed up against a viaduct near Dalston caused a hole in the structure.
Following a temporary repair, the line reopened on Wednesday with a 20 mph speed restriction over the viaduct.
Staff at stations between Maryport and Carlisle, including Aspatria, had earlier arranged car transport for passengers before a bus service was put in place.
Meanwhile, in Cockermouth, the deluge was held back by the town’s flood defences – the first time they had been seriously tested since the 2009 floods.
Forecasters predict more heavy rain today and further light rain tomorrow.
Firefighters worked through the night in Keswick’s Elliott Park and the Greta Bridge area to prevent widespread flooding on Friday.
Firefighters on Saturday pumped water from Keswick rugby club’s Davidson Park, while Threlkeld Cricket Club’s ground was hit by hundreds of tonnes of rubble and sludge.
It is estimated that the flood water caused up to £100,000-worth of damage there.
This weekend’s Distington Steam and Vintage Rally has been cancelled because of waterlogged ground.
First published at 19:24, Thursday, 28 June 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
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