Cruise liner passengers to visit Ilfracombe

Image caption The cruise ships will be visiting during the summer

A North Devon seaside town could have its economy boosted after it was chosen as a destination by a cruise ship company.

Liners will dock in Ilfracombe in May and July after sailing from the United States.

Destination South West said there was "worldwide" competition to attract ships and it had taken "some time" to get a major line to stop there.

The last visit there by a cruise ship was in 2006.

The MV Rotterdam and MV Prinsendam, which are visiting Ilfracombe, are operated by the Holland America Line and carry 1,404 and 835 passengers respectively.

Lieutenant Commander Rob Lawson, Ilfracombe harbour master, said: "It's fantastic news and we're all looking forward to it.

'Warm welcome'

"We're glad that at last we've finally got some ships coming to see us in North Devon.

The visits were secured with the help of Destination South West, which works to promote the region to cruise ship companies and passengers.

Chairman Mike Reynolds said: "With strong worldwide competition to attract these calls it has taken some time to get a major line to call at the Port.

"However, our persistence has paid off and we hope the passengers really enjoy their time in the town and local area."

Laura Holt, sales and marketing manager for North Devon said: "It's great news for the economy of Ilfracombe that once again, they will be in a position to extend a warm welcome to sea-faring visitors."

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