East Coast


Brightlingsea blessing and reclaiming of the waters, 2018

Sunday, May 20, 2018
Historic smacks led by 'Pioneer', 2014
©Terry Hamilton

Brightlingsea will be holding the annual Blessing and Reclaiming of the Waters on 20 May, 2018. Crowds turn out to watch the event, cheer and make a din to send off the smacks in keeping with a historic 'beating of the bounds' event.

Everyone is most welcome to come and join in this historic event.

The ceremony takes place on the Hard at Brightlingsea and on board the skillinger 'Pioneer'. She will join other smacks and Sailing Barge 'Edme' to parade 'dressed overall' along the historic 'Borefleet' (Brightlingsea Creek) up to Batemans Tower to assert Brightlingsea's historic rights to its own waters.

Brightlingsea is the only Cinque Port north of the Thames and its Cinque Port Deputy along with Cinque Port mayors from Kent and local Essex mayors will go aboard 'Pioneer' and the other vessels for the service. They will remain on board in their finery for the parade of dressed smacks.

Visit the Cinque Port Liberty website for more information and history of this event.

Brightlingsea Hard
Roger Tabor