Local businesses are being urged to take advantage of the opportunities that The Tall Ship Races Sunderland 2018 will bring to the city.

Next July, around 1.5million visitors are expected to attend the iconic sailing event which is being held in the Port of Sunderland and sites along the River Wear.

In mid November, offers will be invited for catering and bar concessions, as well as exhibition and trade stands, markets and a children’s fairground, at sites across the city.

Event organisers are looking for a broad range of high quality catering and bar concessions, in particular for those selling local, international or unusual and quirky goods. Businesses are also encouraged to bid for spaces available for them to exhibit and trade their goods and services to visitors from across the region and beyond.

Sunderland City Council’s Cabinet Secretary, Councillor Mel Speding said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for businesses across the city to get involved in this first class event.

“It promises to be the biggest free family event in the UK in 2018 and I urge local businesses and suppliers to make the most of it.

“With crews and visitors from across Europe and beyond, a full entertainment programme and of course the magnificent ships themselves, this promises to be a truly memorable occasion.”

The proposed event zones include; The Port of Sunderland, The East End, Keel Square, St Peter’s (University of Sunderland) and along the coastline from Roker to Seaburn as visitors watch the Tall Ships parade majestically along the North East coast.

For further information or to register your interest, email: Tallshipsprojectoffice@sunderland.gov.uk