One of the world's most famous Tall Ships, which has had a starring role in dozens of box office seafaring films and TV series, is on its way to Galway to take part in this week-ends big SeaFest maritime festival.
The "The Phoenix", left its home port of Charlestown Harbour in Cornwall yesterday and is due to arrive under full sail on Galway Bay on Thursday. Its weekend stay in Galway will be one of the highlights of SeaFest which is expected to attract thousands of visitors to the city.
The 112 foot long twin masted Brigantine which carries 4,000 square feet of sail, will be instantly recognisable to film goers from the role it played in the epic film "1492: Conquest of Paradise" the Ridley Scott directed fictionalized story of Christopher Columbus's discovery of the New World.
For its role in the film "The Phoenix" was converted into a 15th century caravel to accurately replicate Columbus's flagship "The Sancta Maria" and the conditions its sailors experienced on their historic voyage of discovery.
"The Phoenix" also has an extremely interesting maritime history having been built in Denmark in 1929 to serve as a Danish Evangelical Mission Schooner. She was involved in this mission work travelling from port to port carrying evangelical missionaries for 20 years before being retired in 1949.
In Galway festival goers will be able to visit "The Phoenix" and get a sense of what life was like on board a historic Tall Ship over the week end. 8 lucky young people will be able share in the experience of a lifetime by sailing on "The Phoenix" on a sail training voyage from Galway to Warrenpoint departing on 4th July organised by the Atlantic Youth Trust.
According to John Killeen, of SeaFest, (and Marine Institute Chairman) the week end will bring something of the excitement of the two great Volvo Ocean Race festivals to Galway and the arrival of "The Phoenix" – one of the world's most filmed and best known tall ships - will be one of the dramatic highlights.
"Weather permitting the "The Phoenix", which is now making its way across the English Channel, will arrive under full sail in the Bay sometime on Thursday and will have pride of place in the harbour during the festival. We are hoping, because of its association with so many famous films and TV series, that it will be a huge attraction and we will be encouraging people to some to send some time on board it".
"During the week 8 lucky young people will be selected – by competition – to sail on "The Phoenix" from Galway to Warrenpoint as part of SeaFest's role in promoting a love of the sea among young people". Apply online via www.atlanticyouthtrust.org/seafest
To see the full SeaFest programme and check out 'On The Water' events visit www.seafest.ie.
About Seafest and Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth
SeaFest is an initiative of the inter-departmental Marine Coordination Group and supports the Goals of Harnessing Our Wealth – An Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland in relation to engaging with the Sea.
A range of business and innovation events are also taking place in Galway as part of SeaFest from 30th June -2 July. The third annual Our Ocean Wealth Conference is taking place 1st July with the theme 'Into the Blue – Innovating for Our Marine Future'. The conference will investigate how Ireland can innovate in each of the three goal areas of Ireland's Integrated Marine Plan – Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth, namely: a thriving maritime economy, healthy ecosystems and engagement with the sea.
BIM's National Seafood Conference will take place 30th July at the Radisson hotel, Galway. The Digital Ocean will take place 30th July at the Meyrick Hotel, Galway. A Sea Change Researcher Workshop will take place at the Marine Institute and the Marine Industry Awards will take place at the Radisson Hotel, also on the 30th.
More about "The Phoenix"
"The Phoenix" also had leading roles in the swashbuckling 1996 "Moll Flanders", the story of the adventures of "the wickedest woman in England and her American sea captain lover"; Mansfield Park (1999) the romantic comedy drama based on the original Jane Austen novel and "Frenchman's Creek", a 1998 TV movie in which "The Phoenix was again converted, this time to resemble a French privateer "La Mouette"
Most recently it was involved in the filming of the Tom Hardy television series "Taboo", as the "Essex"; in Ron Howard's movie "In the Heart of the Sea" (the true story which inspired Herman Melville to write Moby Dick), "Poldark" Series 1 and 2 and the Golden Globe nominated television series "Outlander".
In December 2015 Phoenix promoted the premiere of 'In the Heart of the Sea' sailing up the Thames and through Tower Bridge with clips from the film projected onto her sails.