Sea shanties will be returning to Harwich once again this autumn as part of a popular international festival.

Organisers say plans are well underway for this year’s Harwich International Shanty Festival, when the historic town will resound with traditional shanties and sea songs once more.

The town’s 18th shanty festival will take place from Friday, Octover 11, to Sunday, October 13.

A spokesman for the festival said: “We have some fabulous shanty artists booked, including a return visit from the very popular and talented UK crew, Kimber’s Men, with their amazing harmonies and amusing banter.

“Our international visitors include Brise Glace from Canada and Grietje Sprot from the Netherlands.

“The French Canadian Brise Glace are a band of four multi-instrumentalists who perform lively interpretations of sea songs and shanties with passion and energy.

“Grietje Sprot dress in traditional costumes and act out their songs about the Friesland fishing community with the aid of authentic props.

“We will also welcome back many familiar names to the festival, some of whom have been with us since the beginning.

“We have Shadow Puppetry and beach activities for children as well as the return of our popular events at the Redoubt Napoleonic Fort which include the King’s German Artillery, the Sea Fencibles, the River Rogues and Sheppey Pirates, Inner State Theatre, Kipperland providing kippers smoked in the traditional way and the ancient craft of Figurehead Carving by the talented Andy Peters.”

Events at the Electric Palace Cinema include shows about Hull Trawling and about the transportation of convicts to Australia.

There will also be a wide variety of workshops, including the popular Jig Dolls with Martin Judkins and Corine Nugteren, Bones with ‘Dutch Uncle’ Hans Weehuizen, and Singing in Public for the First Time with Liz Randall.

There will also be Shanty Trains with pirates and entertainment, Thames barge Victor cruises with shanty singers on board, guided tours of Old Harwich, the Redoubt and Beacon Hill Fort, and Christopher Jones’ house will be open to the public.

For more about the festival, go to