On Saturday and Sunday, August 31 to September 1, thousands of people are expected to head to Ilfracombe for two days of free family fun with a distinctly nautical theme. Particularly visible throughout the event will be Captain Jack Sparrow and chums aka Matt Harris, as they carouse absolutely everywhere in search of fun and rum, only to happy to stop and chat or pose for a picture. With Ropery car park as the hub, the festival will spread right around the harbour area to the pier and at various venues along the seafront. There is a live music stage with a packed programme of local and visiting bands offering everything from folk and sea shanties to reggae, rock 'n' roll, blues and pop. There will be a 'kitchen' area with street food vendors, plus a feast of crab dishes with All Things Crab at Ilfracombe Yacht Club on the Saturday. Saturday also features Punch and Judy, a sandcastle competition plus a pavement art competition with prizes. On Sunday there will be fun fishing at the pier with Combe Martin Sea Angling Club, a crabbing competition and porpoise watch from Capstone. Both days include Mermaid storytelling, Captain Coconut, face painting and a treasure hunt. Pirate mayhem will rule, with pirate fancy dress encouraged and the town's own band of reavers, The Ilfracombe Smugglers will be wandering around looking for (rum) opportunities for fun. There is also a craft market, Ilfracombe Art Trail exhibition and the Ilfracombe and North Devon Sub Aqua Club HQ in Ropery Road will be open to the public, including its mini museum of seabed artefacts. The innovative Waste Shark will be showing how it cleans the seas of plastic and litter too. On Saturday visitors can meet local Royal Marine Matt Mason from RMB Chivenor and the crew who will take on the Ocean Revival 2020 challenge for charity, to row across the North Atlantic to raise money for Royal Marines charities. Sea Ilfracombe festival chairman Rod Donovan said: "It's been incredible to see how big the festival has grown in recent years - especially given that it's run by such a small crew of (dedicated and enthusiastic!) volunteers. "We had over 5,000 visitors in 2018 and are expecting that number to swell considerably this year. "Credit must also go to so many of Ilfracombe's local businesses, partners, supporters and sponsors whose ever-growing generosity and participation is making The Sea Ilfracombe Maritime Festival an annual 'must see' event in North Devon." For the full programme visit www.seailfracombe.co.uk .