Red Jet 4 to escort Dame Ellen home to Cowes
21-02-2005 A triumphant Dame Ellen MacArthur will return to her adopted home this Friday, 25 February 2005 and fans everywhere are invited to make this a truly memorable homecoming.
The solo round-the-world record holder and her yacht B&Q will sail past spectators on Cowes Green and into West Cowes escorted by Red Jet 4, Red Funnel's hi-speed flagship that Ellen named in 2003.
Ellen will come ashore by RIB to the Parade to join the welcome reception party on the ‘bandstand’. The Chairman of the Council, Councillor Peggy Jarman, will later present Ellen with the Freedom of the Isle of Wight. After this, Ellen will take time to meet well-wishers on the Parade before catching a RIB to East Cowes for a reception at Cowes Waterfront – Venture Quays in her honour.
Councillor Jarman said: “We have watched Ellen’s success with immense pride and are looking forward to welcoming her home to Cowes and the Island where she has chosen to live and base her team. Ellen’s achievement has really put the Isle of Wight in the world’s spotlight and we are hoping that local people will come out in force to make her return really special.”
Timings for Friday 25 February (timings approximate and subject to weather conditions on the day – see note below).
1.00 – 1.50pm The trimaran B&Q helmed by Dame Ellen will parade along the seafront from the New Holmwood Hotel and along the Green to the Royal Yacht Squadron
2.00pm Dame Ellen joins the IW Council welcome party on the bandstand on the Parade, West Cowes and is presented with the Freedom of the Isle of Wight
2.20pm Dame Ellen leaves the bandstand to meet and greet local residents
2.50pm Dame Ellen transfers to East Cowes via RIB for an official reception
Advice for mainland spectators:
Fans are advised to catch the scheduled 1200 or 1230 Red Jet departures from Terminal 2, Town Quay Southampton (an extra service will depart at 1210 if necessary). Tickets are available from the ticket office when you arrive and the crossing to West Cowes takes just 22 minutes. Please allow 15 minutes to walk along The Parade to The Green for the best viewing points.
Red Funnel has been a performance partner to Ellen and her team, Offshore Challenges since 1999.