Call for ‘fair pricing’ policy during Tall Ships festival

CIVIC and business leaders in the south-east have called for “fair pricing” during Waterford’s hosting of the Tall Ships this summer.

Mayor of Waterford city Mary Roche, along with head of operations with Fáilte Ireland, Gary Breen, and chief executive of Waterford Chamber, Michael Garland, yesterday urged “value-for-money” over the four day festival.

At least 500,000 people are expected in the city and along the Suir Estuary for the city’s hosting of The Tall Ships Races 2011 from June 30 to July 3. A similar crowd was recorded in 2005 when the city last acted as a host port in the event.

Bryan Ferry, The Waterboys and Sharon Shannon have already been announced as part of the line-up for the festival that celebrates The Tall Ships Races

Ms Roche, along with Mr Breen and Mr Garland, yesterday called on businesses in the city to “maintain fair pricing” during the festival.

In a specific package geared towards the tourism and hospitality sector, a Tall Ships Customer Care Charter has been developed by Fáilte Ireland.

This scheme will provide additional training for front-of-house personnel who will be among the first points of contact for visitors to the city during its hosting of dozens of Tall Ships and their crews, it said.

Ms Roche yesterday said: “Our hosting of The Tall Ships Races presents a priceless opportunity for us to showcase the best of Waterford to a huge national and international audience.

She said the city needed “to take a slightly longer view and not put short-term profits ahead of medium- and long-term gain for all”.

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