Torbay Royal Regatta Bi Centenary Celebrations
The Torbay Royal Regatta Bi Centenary Celebrations will take place between Saturday 24th August and Wednesday 28th August inclusive.
The Anderton & Rowland Fair will be on Torre Abbey Meadows and will be operating for the whole of the Regatta. The Fair are one of the Regattas oldest sponsors and a welcome addition to the already very full programme.
History of Torbay Royal Regatta
The Torbay Royal Regatta originated when an advertisement appeared in Trewman’s Exeter Flying Post offering ‘Two handsome silver cups and other prizes’ to be ‘sailed for’ by ‘gentleman’s boats’ and ‘other boats’.
The term ‘regatta’ was not applied to the races until 1828, when the Duchess of Clarence (later Queen Adelaide, wife of William IV) attended what was by now a fashionable event. Five years later, Princess Victoria visited the regatta and showed great interest in the sailing trophies.
The Torbay Royal Regatta was the first yachting regatta in the country to gain royal patronage and, as well as organising top class sailing races, the event has variously catered for other sports including: motor boat racing, rowing, running, water-skiing, swimming and diving. In 1847, Trewman’s Exeter Flying Post commented that the regatta attracted people who ‘enjoy the donkey racing rather than the yacht racing’. In this respect, the organising committee have always provided a range of social and recreational facilities for ‘landlubbers’ with a grand ball (since 1813) firework displays (since 1836), funfairs (since 1841) and aerobatic displays by the Red Arrows (since 1988).
The tradition of the regatta is as old as the town itself and, apart from enforced breaks in wartime, the event has continued to flourish and grow in stature for 200 years.
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