Belfast Telegraph

Video: Tall Ships - All aboard as Belfast prepares for four days of excitement

By Gary Grattan

The Tall Ships 2015 - expected to be the biggest event ever staged in Northern Ireland - officially gets underway tomorrow (Thursday).

Around 500,000 people will converge on Belfast quaysides between now and Sunday to soak up the atmosphere.

Another 500,000 people are expected to line the Co Antrim and Down coasts on Sunday for the spectacle of the 'Parade of Sail' as the ships leave.

The event is predicted to boost the city's economy to the tune of £10m.

Eamon Deeny, head of communications at Belfast City Council, joined members of the media on a boat trip this afternoon around Belfast harbour.

"There is a real excitement building. Members of Sail Training International - the main organisers of the Tall Ships - have already been telling us the notable changes they have seen in the city since they were last here in 2009.

"The number of hotel bookings in Belfast between now and October has been unsurpassed. The city will definitely be the place to be over the next four days."

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