With the sun set to shine, we are busy getting ready for the annual August Bank Holiday weekend at our marinas, with lots of fun and activities being prepared to ensure you really make the most of it. We will be there to ensure your every boating need is taken care of and to make sure you can simply kick back with a cold drink after a fabulous day of cruising... because that’s what August Bank Holidays are all about!
There seems to be a Pimm’s theme running across many of our marinas with the Trolley of treats transforming to the Trolley of Pimm’s and touring the pontoons at Torquay Marina, along with an early evening Pimm’s welcome reception at Northney and Sparkes. Cobb’s Quay Marina is also going all out with a complete Pimm’s weekend!
However, don’t worry if Pimm’s isn’t your tipple, there’s plenty more for you to enjoy this weekend. Here’s just a snapshot of what our marinas are up to!
Torquay Marina will be hosting a children’s crabbing contest on Saturday 27th August with prizes for the most crabs caught (and if you haven’t registered yet please give us a call). This will start at 11am and all crab lines, bait and buckets will be supplied, along with complimentary tea, coffee and bacon rolls for the adults. You can also take part in a spot of wine tasting on the pontoons as the day draws on.
Penton Hook Marina is holding its big berth holder party on the lawn on Friday welcoming all annual berth holders and visitors to an Italian themed party with drinks and nibbles in the sunshine.
Port Hamble Marina will be hosting a ‘Bank Holiday Beer on the Berths’ with the team touring the pontoons throughout the weekend to give out cold beverages while you relax on your boat.
Shamrock Quay is embarking on the weekend with a Pirates of the Caribbean berth holder’s cruise on Friday with a Pirate themed tour up and down the Solent in fancy dress (not compulsory), after they have walked the plank! Once onboard they will enjoy a disco, food and drinks as well as be in with a chance to win a number of fantastic raffle prizes including tickets for the England vs Malta game at Wembley with hospitality which is worth £500, all to raise funds for Leukaemia Busters. Over 180 berth holders and friends are joining the cruise and taking part in a treasure hunt! In addition, George, Shamrock Quay’s Freedom Maker will be breaking out the Trolley of Treats on Sunday to present owners with a cold glass of wine or beer and a tasty croissant or Danish pastry.
Ocean Village Marina guests will enjoy a Bank Holiday BBQ on Saturday followed by a Greek nibbles event on Sunday, which sounds simply delicious. And, on Friday night Saxon Wharf is hosting a berth holders party which is a sure fire way to start the Bank Holiday weekend as you mean to go on!
Hamble Point Marina will be rolling out its Trolley of Treats delivering ‘Ploughmans in a Jar’, which really is as delicious as it sounds, along with strawberries and cream and free drinks. They will also be giving out packs for the kids with lots of treats to keep them busy including bubbles and quiz books.
Woolverstone Marina will be hosting a BBQ on Friday night at on-site restaurant, The Riverside and after the Pimm’s arrival drinks at Northney and Sparkes’ the teams will be delivering fresh pastries for breakfast on Saturday as well as ensuring you have refreshments for your journey home. Queen Anne’s Battery will be enjoying a Sun and Sangria evening on Saturday and Mercury Yacht Harbour will be rolling out its Bank Holiday Trolley of Treats.
What is for certain is there’s a lot going on this Bank Holiday weekend and that we are focused on making sure it’s one of your best weekends this summer!
If you don’t want to miss out on all the fun or want to have a chat with the team ahead of the weekend please don’t hesitate to give your marina office a call. If you are planning a visit to our marinas this weekend please note they are filling up fast, with many already booked, so please do get in touch.
MDL Marinas, Europe’s leading marina operator, is looking forward to supporting this week's prestigious Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Portsmouth, where they will be showcasing their extensive marina network, now comprising of over 100 destinations in the UK, France, Spain and Italy.
As the Official UK Marina Partner to Land Rover Ben Ainslie Racing and the recent announcement of their new Engagement Partnership with the America’s Cup World Series Portsmouth, this year MDL will be proudly exhibiting in the exciting Marketplace located in the heart of the Race Village. The three-day spectacular event, taking place on Southsea seafront, will see the MDL Group get behind the team and join the nation in backing Land Rover BAR’s quest to bring the Cup home.
MDL’s annual berth holders and visitors enrolled on their Cruising Club scheme, also have the opportunity to secure preferential rates for tickets to the exciting Race Village in Southsea. Those who are lucky enough to acquire a ticket, will afford the best views of the race course in the Solent, as well as receive a unique insight into the history, technology and racing teams in this esteemed sporting event. The Race Village will also include big screens with commentary to watch the racing and the opportunity to access the exciting new ‘Tech & Team Zones’, watch live BMX shows and secure the best spot on the sea front to enjoy aerial displays by the Red Arrows, Red Bull Matadors and Blades.
The Marketplace will boast a variety of shops and food stalls, while MDL’s stand will welcome the return of its popular Cleat Challenge, first seen at last year’s America's Cup World Series event in Portsmouth. Those participating will have the chance to win one of three Henri Lloyd jackets, competing for the fastest rope cleating time!
Adrien Burnand, Head of Marketing at MDL Marinas, commented: “It’s set to be a fantastic event and we’re looking forward to exhibiting once again at the America’s Cup World Series in Portsmouth. As the Official UK Marina partner for Land Rover BAR we’re excited to be supporting the team in bringing the Cup home. Our friendly and experienced staff will also be on hand to discuss Freedom Berthing, the most extensive berthing package in marketplace.
The event takes place this week between 22nd and 24th July, and will see the world’s best sailors descend on the Solent to battle it out on high-speed AC45 foiling catamarans. The Louis Vuitton America’s Cup Portsmouth is expected to entice up to 650,000 visitors across the three-day sporting bonanza.
Land Rover BAR’s home city of Portsmouth is a dynamic and vibrant place, with its proud naval and maritime heritage, towering world-class visitor attractions, museums and galleries, unique shopping destinations, great places to eat and miles and miles of beautiful waterfront.
Visit our Land Rover BAR Portal for all the latest information from the America's Cup, including team news and race results.
MDL Marinas, Europe’s leading marina operator, is delighted to announce its involvement in the prestigious Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Portsmouth, as an official UK Marina Engagement Partner. The event will be taking place on 22nd to 24th July and will see the world’s best sailors descend on the Solent to battle it out on high-speed AC45 foiling catamarans.
As part of this new partnership, MDL Marinas will exhibit to promote their prestigious marine services at this highly anticipated, international event. The Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series organisers will also benefit from promotion of the event to MDL’s extensive customer network, both across the UK and Europe. MDL’s annual berth holders and Cruising Club members will be offered preferential tickets to the exciting Race Village in Southsea.
Visitors who are lucky enough to acquire a ticket, will afford the best views of the race course in the Solent, as well as receive a unique insight into the history, technology and racing teams in this esteemed sporting event. Spectators will also have the opportunity to access the exciting new ‘Tech & Team Zones’, watch live BMX shows and secure the best spot on the sea front to enjoy aerial displays by the Red Arrows, Red Bull Matadors and Blades.
Dean Smith, Operations and Marketing Director at MDL Marinas, commented: “We are delighted to become an Engagement Partner for the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series in Portsmouth. This exciting partnership will enable us to offer our valued customers preferential tickets to what promises to be an epic event, both on the water and on shore. MDL Marinas will also be exhibiting in the Race Village.
“Last year, MDL Marinas became the official UK Marina Partner for the British contender, Land Rover BAR. This sees MDL providing access to the Solent for training, as well as making its network of leading marina locations and facilities across the South available to the team. This new partnership further cements our involvement in this historical event.”
Leslie Greenhalgh, Event Director of the Portsmouth event, added: “It is great to have the support of MDL Marinas for this prestigious event and having already established a strong partnership with Land Rover BAR, we see them as a natural fit. We are excited to have MDL on board and exhibiting at the event and look forward to welcoming their berth holders and Cruising Club members to the Race Village in July.”
The Louis Vuitton America’s Cup Portsmouth is expected to entice up to 50,000 visitors across the three-day sporting bonanza.
For more information about the event, please visit www.lvacwsportsmouth.com.
MDL Marinas berth holder, 65-year-old Alan Shave, is celebrating after completing his latest challenge, to climb Mount Kilimanjaro to raise funds for pancreatic cancer in support of a fellow Penton Hook Marina berth holder.
Alan took on the amazing challenge for his friend Clem Holland, who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Clem was keen to take on some kind of initiative to raise funds for charity but was too weak so Alan, in a fantastic gesture, offered to climb Mount Kilimanjaro on his behalf, but with one condition – that when he returned Clem would be there to welcome him home.
Alan commented: “Clem and I met at Penton Hook Marina where we share the same pontoon. We really hit it off, having the same interests and we both love a good challenge. It’s my pleasure to take on this fantastic challenge for my friend and I hope I’m able to raise as much money as I can for our chosen charities.”
After climbing for five and half days with a cold and severe altitude sickness Alan reached 5,400m at 3am, just a few hours short of the summit. His body had failed to acclimatise sufficiently and he started to become unconscious. The doctor assessed his condition and ordered a fast descent to base camp. Alan was carrying an MDL branded flag and he made the doctor promise that he would get it to the summit. At 7am on Friday 26th February 2016 the MDL flag become the highest marina flag from sea level.
Alan remembers little of the descent back to base camp but recalls that the porters were amazing and probably saved his life, commenting: “The weather had been particularly bad with strong winds and -24 degree temperatures. That night two people had stayed at base camp refusing to summit. Two needed a fast decent and of those that reached the summit six were asking for stretchers from base camp and one wanted a helicopter. It had been a brutal night. That said, I need to go back to finish the challenge and am planning to take on the summit in August so Clem will have to hang around for a bit longer to help raise more money for our charities.”
Alan and Clem have selected Pancreatic Cancer Action and The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity as their chosen charities. Close to £4,000 (including Gift Aid) has been raised so far for Alan and he hopes to smash the £5,000 mark.
Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest free-standing mountain in the world at 5,895 metres (19,342ft). The high elevation, low temperatures and occasional high winds make this mountain a difficult and dangerous trek.
This isn’t Alan’s first climb and in 2015 he climbed the summit of Mount Snowdon and took the MDL Marinas flag along. The flag became the highest in England and Wales at 1085 meters (3560ft).
Alan’s trip is completely self-funded with 100% of his donations being split between the two charities. To help Alan reach his target visit www.virginmoneygiving.com/AlanShave.
MDL Marinas, Europe’s leading marina operator is launching an exciting charitable initiative on 1st March, which will see its team and customers cycle the entire route of its UK marina network and back again to help raise funds for Prostate Cancer UK.
The company initiative was created in support of Mike Glanville, MDL’s Group Head of Operations who has undertaken two charitable runs to-date following the loss of one of his best friends to Prostate Cancer. Mike is currently in training for his third and biggest run – the Virgin London Marathon on 24th April.
The MDL Marinas team decided that whilst Mike puts on his running shoes and pounds miles and miles of pavement, they would support him by cycling the whopping 1,634 miles in an effort to raise an additional £1,634 for Prostate Cancer UK – a target that the team are hoping to smash! To conquer the challenge MDL’s static bike will be making a grand tour of its 18 marinas including locations in Poole, Torquay, Plymouth and The Thames, where team members and customers will be challenged to hop on the bike and cycle to raise funds for such a worthy cause.
Adrien Burnand, Head of Marketing at MDL Marinas, commented: “We have been hugely impressed by Mike’s dedication and continued training for such a great cause, and decided it was only right to help boost his fundraising efforts and show our support. We are all very excited about the cycle challenge and are looking forward to seeing all of our team, as well as many of our willing berth holders’ cycle up a storm in one of our 18 UK marina locations.
Mike Glanville, MDL’s Group Head of Operations, commented: “It’s fantastic that the team at MDL are running this initiative and helping to raise further funds for the charity. One of my very best friends sadly passed away after an epic battle with Prostate Cancer. This cancer affects thousands of men each year, and we are hoping the MDL cycle challenge, along with my running efforts, will not only help raise further funds to find a new cure, but also help raise awareness of the cancer amongst our customers and teams in an effort to help more men survive prostate cancer and enjoy a better quality of life.”
To donate towards this worthy cause please visit www.justgiving.com/Mike-G-Marathon.
Last year, MDL Marinas teamed up with Marwell Wildlife to announce MDL’s involvement in the public art extravaganza, Marwell’s Zany Zebras, which will take place this summer.
For ten weeks throughout the summer, starting on 16th July, zebra sculptures will inhabit the streets of Southampton, showcasing the wealth of artistic talent in the area, while highlighting the significant conservation threat facing wild zebras and how the Southampton business community can make a difference. Following the success of Go! Rhinos in 2013, Marwell’s Zany Zebras promises to be even bigger and better.
To celebrate the involvement in this year’s event, MDL Marinas is holding a fantastic competition inviting people to get their creative juices flowing and submit a design of an ‘Under the Sea’ creature. Local artist Tom Joyce, has innovatively designed ‘Zebastian the Seabra’, a Grevy’s zebra sculpture painted with over 100 fun and unique cartoon sea creatures including a catfish, swordfish and jellyfish. The winning creation will be included in Tom’s final painting on ‘Zebastian the Seabra’ for all to see and receive an annual family pass to Marwell Zoo. The top three entries will also all receive family day tickets to Marwell Zoo and the Southampton Boat Show.
Marwell’s Zany Zebras aims to raise money for charity, promote local business and encourage local tourism. After the event, all of the sculptures will be sold at auction with proceeds going towards conservation of these animals and other wildlife plus give support to communities living in the arid landscapes of northern Kenya.
Adrien Burnand, Head of Marketing at MDL, commented: “We are delighted to be a part of Marwell's Zany Zebras campaign. It’s a fantastic way of raising awareness of the conservation work Marwell Wildlife carries out to protect endangered Grévy’s zebras. MDL has six marinas in the Solent which play an integral part in the life of the city and we can’t wait to see ‘Zebastian the Seabra’ featuring the winning artwork.”
Kirstie Mathieson, Project Manager for Marwell’s Zany Zebras, said: “Marwell’s Zany Zebras will showcase Southampton and all the city has to offer, including the beautiful marinas. Art trails of this nature provide a great vehicle for tourists and we are delighted that MDL is engaging the surrounding community with their ‘Feature your Creature’ campaign, a unique opportunity to be part of an amazing piece of art.”
If you would like to be in with a chance of having your ‘Under the Sea’ creation included as part of MDL’s Feature your Creature campaign and the opportunity to win fantastic prizes please visit: www.mdlmarinas.co.uk/creature.
Please submit all submissions to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
MDL Marinas, Europe’s leading marina operator, has invested £250,000 in a new, super fast WiFi service across its network of UK marinas.
The new hardware will offer super quick internet access across all of MDL Marinas’ 19 UK marina and boatyard sites. It will enable berth holders and visitors to quickly and easily connect, stream video, Skype and handle large file downloads, and all from the comfort and convenience of their own boats.
The complimentary service is offered as part of MDL’s Freedom Berthing membership and will be accessible for all WiFi enabled mobile devices, offering a high-speed, low latency connection.
Commenting on the new offering, Adrien Burnand, Head of Marketing at MDL Marinas said: “We know from talking to our berth holders and visitors how important it is for them to have access to super fast WiFi. Whether for business or pleasure, in this day and age most of us demand and expect excellent internet access wherever we may be. We are delighted to introduce this as part of the exceptional MDL service we provide across our marinas.”
Alan Chorlton, a berth holder at MDL’s Torquay Marina added: “I am delighted that MDL Marinas has upgraded its WiFi service. When I am berthed in the marina, it’s important for me to be able to access the internet to pick up emails, connect with friends and family via Skype, as well as view and download large files. The new WiFi is exceptionally fast; it’s brilliant.”
MDL Marinas, Europe’s leading marina operator, is looking forward to exhibiting at the London Boat Show in January 2016, where they will be showcasing their extensive network comprising of over 100 marina destinations.
As the Official UK Marina Partner to Land Rover | BAR, this year MDL will be proudly exhibiting opposite the teams stand on A006. MDL’s popular Cleat Challenge, first seen at the America's Cup World Series event in Portsmouth, will be making a welcome return. Those participating will have the chance to win one of three Henri Lloyd jackets by competing for the fastest rope cleating time!
Furthermore, MDL will be running a competition to win a year’s free berthing at their stunning five-star marina in Italy, Marina di Stabia. Located in the beautiful Bay of Naples, Marina di Stabia is a new generation superyacht facility offering long-term berthing opportunities at incredible rates. With 900 berths, the marina is located in close reach of a rich picking of famous scenic spots including Sorrento, Capri, Amalfi and Pompeii.
Adrien Burnand, Head of Marketing at MDL Marinas, commented: “We look forward to be exhibiting once again at the London Boat Show. With over 100 fantastic marina destinations to choose from, including those in UK, Italy, Spain and France, our friendly staff will be on hand to help you to plan for an exciting season ahead!”
The show promises over 300 exhibitors showcasing thousands of boats, products and brands, the latest in technology and innovation, alongside world debuts and product launches. Experts from the MDL team will be on hand throughout the show to welcome berth holders and visitors to the stand. Plus there are some new attractions that promise to really capture your imagination including a purpose-built Mediterranean Bay and a 60s revival showcase.
To book, visit the official London Boat Show website. Don’t forget, MDL berth holders are entitled to receive a preferential rate - please ask at your marina office for further details.
At the beginning of the year, we celebrated being presented the coveted Boating Business Environment Award at the annual Marine Trade Association (MTA) & Boating Business Awards.
We scooped the award for our commitment to reducing carbon emissions across our marinas and our work protecting the environment. We were also recognised in particular for leading the sector in tackling the spread of marine non-native species to protect native aquatic life, working with the Government and key stakeholders.
Peter Nash, Editor of Boating Business, commented: “This award is always given to a business that has pulled out all the stops to deliver lasting environmental improvements in the marine industry. The judging panel was very impressed with the recent sustainability measures that MDL has introduced, spanning a number of different environmental issues, and the company’s dedication to continually pursuing ways to protect the environment.”
Our commitment to protecting and preserving our local environments in and around our marinas continues. We recently teamed up with The BLUE Marine Foundation and Land Rover BAR to design a customised pontoon, which aims to assist with the restoration of the native oyster in the Solent, once the biggest oyster fishery in Europe. The newly developed pontoon structure, which bolts directly to the side of existing walkway pontoons, was designed to accommodate cages that will be used to house brood stock oysters. The mesh size is such that the adult oysters will be contained within the cages but their spat are picked up on the tide and redistributed throughout the Solent.
Researchers from the Portsmouth Institute of Marine Science will study the oysters on the Land Rover BAR pontoon, closely monitoring the relationship between density and mortality / reproduction rates. This research will help identify optimum conditions for the oysters, which we will then replicate across pontoons in all of our marinas across the Solent.
Until the late seventies, nearly 500 boats made a living from catching oysters in the Solent, employing more than 700 men at sea. Fishing for oysters was banned in 2013 due to a drastic decline in numbers, but we hope our pontoons will be instrumental in returning the oyster numbers to a satisfactory level throughout the Solent and allow fishing to be permitted once again.
We’ll be sure to keep you posted on this!
Our marina teams have done a brilliant job this year, working together to raise funds for some amazing charities. We couldn’t do it without your help, so we’d like to say a big thank you for being so generous and helping us to make a difference!
At the beginning of the year, many of our marinas underwent a Red Nose Day makeover and we launched a social media initiative encouraging our berth holders and team to post selfies of themselves making their faces ‘funny for money’. We donated £1 for every photo received.
In May, Brixham and Torquay Marina organised a charity boat lift to raise funds for The Fisherman’s Mission, whilst June saw one of our berth holders, Gary Pearson, lead a mammoth 68 mile bike ride from Penton Hook Marina, near Chertsey-on-Thames, to Ocean Village Marina in Southampton. He was supported by five dedicated members of the MDL team and the ride raised over £9,000 for the British Heart foundation – a brilliant result.
August saw 24 berth holders from Cobb’s Quay Marina exchange the rolling waves of the sea for the rolling hills of a golf course where they organised a tournament – raising £2,000 for local children’s hospice, Julia’s House. The marina also held its annual fishing competition to raise funds for sailing charity, Heroes on the Water, which this year raised an impressive £1,500.
Each year, we raise money for our long standing charity partner, Ocean Youth Trust South (OYT South). This year, we donated over £700, as well as working with the charity to run the Sail Training Awards, offering admirable young people the chance to take part in a sailing voyage aboard OYT South’s training yacht.
Most recently in November, a 15-strong MDL team cycled 100 miles (the distance from Hamble Point Marina to Cobb’s Quay Marina and return) as part of an epic static bike challenge to raise funds for Children In Need. The team also sported lots of fancy dress and baked some delicious cakes! Despite having to replace our exercise bike part way through the day, we managed to raise over £500.
We’re sure you’ll agree it’s been a very successful fundraising year and we hope to raise even more in 2016!