Page last updated at 16:35 GMT, Tuesday, 6 April 2010 17:35 UK

Giant wheel boost for Tall Ships Race in Hartlepool

Giant wheel
The giant wheel stands 130ft high

The arrival of the Tall Ships Race to Teesside later this year is to be boosted by the addition of the UK's largest ferris wheel.

Hartlepool is hosting the international event between 7 and 10 August, which is expected to attract a million visitors.

The town will see up to 100 Tall Ships after they have sailed from Norway in the second and final race.

The 130ft (39.6m) high wheel will be based at the Town Moor Fair on the Headland from 29 July to 10 August.

The wheel will be centre stage at the Town Moor Fair - the official fairground for The Tall Ships event.

John Murphy, who runs the fair, said: "The Giant Wheel is a huge attraction and there is no doubt that it will enhance the experience for the many visitors we are expecting this summer.

"It is the largest big wheel in the UK and comes complete with an impressive light show.

"Previously, it has visited some of the biggest cities including Edinburgh, Belfast and Glasgow so it's fantastic we've been able to secure it for Hartlepool."

The largest of the Tall Ships will be berthed in Victoria Harbour, with smaller vessels at Hartlepool Marina.

The ships will arrive on 7 August and leave a few days later in what organisers say will be an impressive "parade of sail".

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