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Last Updated: Friday, 17 June, 2005, 18:12 GMT 19:12 UK
Special choir to perform at T200
Lord Nelson
Boys served in ships' cabins during Lord Nelson's era
Schoolchildren from across Portsmouth are uniting to form a special choir that will perform sea shanties at the Trafalgar 200 celebrations.

A total of 70 boys will sing songs from Lord Nelson's era as part of the International Festival of the Sea in Portsmouth, starting on 30 June.

Their name, the Cabin Boy Choir, was inspired because youngsters worked below deck in the Battle of Trafalgar.

They are due to perform on each day of the four-day festival.

All schools in the Portsmouth area were given the opportunity to put boys forward for selection for the choir.

About 250,000 people are expected to gather in the city for the celebrations.

Thousands of spectator yachts are also expected to gather to watch the inspection of 165 ships, which the Queen and senior royals will attend.

Andrew Atkins, head of the Portsmouth Music Service, said, "It is particularly exciting to get so many boys singing together out of school time, as it is an activity that can be hard to get them involved in, but they really enjoy it when they do.

"It's quite surprising to think that boys as young as those who are part of the choir would have been serving as cabin boys on the ships that took part in the Battle of Trafalgar."

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