Stunning festival to showcase Littlehampton harbour

Dramatic displays in the river and off the coast are once again in the pipeline     Picture: Chris Koven

Dramatic displays in the river and off the coast are once again in the pipeline Picture: Chris Koven

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A SEAPLANE landing on the River Arun is just one of the many spectacles planned for this year’s Littlehampton Waterfront Festival on Sunday (July 27).

This year’s event has been organised by the town’s Harbour Board and is set to be a stunning showcase for all the groups who use the town’s river.

Harbour master Billy Johnson said: “I’m excited about the festival.

“I think the harbour is an under-used asset of the town. An event like this will transform it.

“It will be a spectacle and a chance to showcase just what goes on in the harbour and all those who use it.

“Hopefully, if it goes well, it will gain its own momentum.”

The event will kick off from 9.30am with a number of stallholders opening the festivities.

Due to flood defence works, there will be fewer land-based attractions than normal, but Mr Johnson was confident that the sheer volume of marine activities would more than make up for this.

“We normally hold it over two days and sometimes find it hard to fill,” he said. “Now we’ve condensed it all into one day, I think it will be an even better event.”

From 10.30am, visitors will get a chance to go aboard a set of RNLI lifeboats. Then, from 10.45am the seaplane is set to land on the river.

From 11am, there will be a hovercraft display, while later, at 12.45pm, there will be an open-water swimming competition from Fisherman’s Quay.

A number of groups will be racing in the harbour while the Arun Yacht Club and town’s lifeboat station will both be throwing their doors open for visitors.

Fishing and diving trips from charter vessels and river cruises on board the Belle of Arun will also be taking place.

Mr Johnson said he hoped the event would bolster the numbers of some of those groups who regularly use the harbour’s facilities.

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