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!
Staff at MDL’s Queen Anne’s Battery in Plymouth are looking forward to welcoming some very special visitors into the marina at the end of the week. Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Atlantic Challenger II will be berthing at Queen Anne’s Battery this Friday 23rd October to mark Team Great Britain’s new attempt to win the historic Hale’s Trophy.
The Hale’s Trophy, also commonly known as the Blue Riband, is awarded to the fastest surface commercial passenger vessel crossing the Atlantic Ocean in either direction. In 1986 Richard Branson broke the then world record by two hours on his Virgin Atlantic Challenger II with the help of navigator, Dag Pike who is now a Team Great Britain member. Despite breaking a world record, Richard and Dag didn’t win the Hale’s Trophy as they weren’t a commercial passenger vessel.
Richard George, Team Great Britain’s founder, is now launching a fresh attempt to win the Hale’s Trophy using a new, highly efficient, cutting edge vessel. Richard commented: “I’ve been working on the project for several years and our team involves some of the best powerboat and boat design people around so we are feeling very confident. The whole ethos of this team is to drive efficiency through design engineering and to make the world of powerboating a cleaner place. We have a future strategy which is to approach zero emissions as fast as the technology allows. We have applied methods which are commonplace in aerospace and high end motorsport, to the design of this groundbreaking new vessel. Our biggest challenge is around efficiency and we have designed TGB; a 34m long 13m beam catamaran which has to cross from New York to Bishop Rock Lighthouse off the Scillies using only 1 fuel load – a huge challenge!”
Chris Price, Marina Manager at Queen Anne’s Battery, commented: “We’re delighted to be supporting the team and by berthing with MDL they will have access to first class facilities which we’re hoping will help them bring the Hale’s Trophy back to Great Britain. This is an epic event and we’re proud to be able to get involved.”
For more information about TGB34 and the new challenge, please visit click here.
For more information about the Virgin Atlantic Challenger II, please click here.
The deadline for the Marina of the Year Awards is fast approaching – and your home marina needs your support!
We are delighted to have 17 fabulous UK marinas in the running for this year’s prestigious Marina of the Year Awards, run by The Yacht Harbour Association (TYHA) and we need your votes by Monday 30th November!
Designed to recognise excellence in facilities and customer service, the Marina of the Year Awards are open to all Gold Anchor accredited marinas both in the UK and overseas.
Love your marina? Then make your vote count! These Awards are voted for by boat owners and berth holders just like you, giving you the chance to reward your favourite marina and make sure it gets the credit it deserves.
So, you have a decision to make and we need you to act now to reward your home marina. Perhaps picturesque Brixham Marina is your winner? Or maybe you prefer Northney Marina’s tranquillity, or Port Hamble’s status as the centre of the Solent's racing and boating scene?
Voting is really quick and simple – all you need to do is visit www.marinaawards.com before 30th November 2015.
Here are our 17 UK marinas that have been nominated across two categories:
|UK Coastal Marina:||Northney Marina||Woolverstone Marina|
|Brixham Marina||Ocean Village Marina|
|Chatham Maritime Marina||Port Hamble Marina||UK Inland Marina:|
|Cobb's Quay Marina||Queen Anne’s Battery||Bray Marina|
|Hamble Point Marina||Shamrock Quay||Penton Hook Marina|
|Hythe Marina Village||Sparkes Marina||Windsor Marina|
|Mercury Yacht Harbour||Torquay Marina|
The winners will be announced during the 2016 London Boat Show at ExCeL. Don’t let your favourite marina go unnoticed, get voting for your Marina of the Year now!
Thank you for your support.
The UK’s leading marina operator, MDL Marinas, has developed a powerful video to celebrate being signed as the Official UK Marina Partner for Land Rover BAR.
The video was made using a drone that filmed aerial shots of the Land Rover BAR team training and competing at their headquarters in Portsmouth. The video features a compelling script, which celebrates the dedication and training of the Land Rover BAR team values that are shared by the team at MDL.
‘Ropes whip, sails crack. hull creaks, wind screams.
Boom swings, crew scrambles, battling, winching, sailing, foiling… flying.
Preparing, securing, steadying, lifting... flying.’
Drones were also used to film the MDL teams hard at work at Hamble Point and Port Hamble, both situated on the River Hamble. The captivating footage promotes the likeness between the crew and the marina managers by highlighting the shared desire to win and succeed using a combination of hard work and determination.
The exciting video sees the MDL group get behind the team – as they compete on home waters for the first time – and join the nation to back Land Rover BAR’s quest to bring the Cup home.
To support the Team, MDL has provided essential access to the Solent to enable team training. Land Rover BAR has also been given full use of MDL’s network of leading marina locations and facilities across the south.
On behalf of the Team, Ben Ainslie commented: “It’s great to have MDL Marinas on board as our Official UK Marina Partner. As the leading marina operator in the UK and the longest-standing British marina group it was a natural fit. We are looking forward to closely working together on this momentous challenge.”
To keep up to date with the team and the America's Cup, visit our Online Portal.
We are pleased to announce that Lesley Robinson (pictured) will succeed Eamonn Feeney as the new Managing Director for MDL Marinas.
The change comes as Eamonn recently announced his intention to retire after almost 5 years at the helm overseeing the continued growth and success of Europe’s leading marina group.
Eamonn said “I’ve really enjoyed my time with MDL, in what is a great industry with great people, and I’m personally pleased to be handing on a business in great shape to my successor. Whilst this is the first phase of my retirement plan I’ll be keeping up my links with the industry as I think I’ll find it hard to stay away.”
Lesley joins MDL Marinas as a proven business leader with a strong commercial, customer focused background across a broad range of fields. Lesley has operated at director level in the leisure, FMCG, media and technology sectors both internationally and in the UK and will be joining MDL from her most recent Director role at the Money Advice Service.
Lesley will join the business in early November and will be relocating to the Hamble area.
Lesley said “I’m delighted to be joining MDL and looking forward to getting started as soon as possible. I’m excited about the many opportunities that lie ahead for the business and to being part of the excellent team dedicated to serving MDL’s customers.”
MDL Marinas, Europe’s leading marina operator, is looking forward to exhibiting at this year’s Southampton Boat Show, when it will return once again to its impressive two-tier waterfront location.
Staff members will be on hand throughout the show to welcome berth holders and visitors to the stand and showcase MDL’s network of outstanding marinas in the UK and Europe. This year, the team will be running a competition to win a year’s free berthing at MDL’s stunning five-star Marina di Stabia. Located in the beautiful Bay of Naples in Italy, 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.
Freedom Berthing members will, as normal, benefit from exclusive hospitality in our MyMDL Lounge. The balcony offers a wonderful view over the boat show marina, ideal to enjoy a complimentary drink or two in the sun (should the weather be kind to us). Berth holders can also take advantage of free parking at Ocean Car Park in Ocean Village Marina. Simply hand in your parking ticket when presenting your card at the Freedom Berthing reception desk and we will exchange this for an exit pass.
The show will also see the MDL team recognise the achievement of a group of deserving young people who have completed their Sail Training Awards, during a special ceremony. The MDL-sponsored awards have been running for nearly 30 years, offering admirable young people - carefully selected due to their exceptional accomplishments, or for overcoming adverse personal circumstances – the opportunity of a lifetime aboard a training yacht operated by Ocean Youth Trust South.
Other highlights of the show for MDL include cheque presentations to two UK charities, Heroes on the Water and Julia’s House children’s hospice, thanks to Cobb’s Quay Marina’s fundraising efforts. The marina holds an annual fishing competition to raise funds for sailing charity, Heroes on the Water, which this year raised £650. The team also recently held a golf day at Bulbury Woods golf course, raising an incredible £2,000 for Julia’s House.
Our cleat challenge game, first seen at the America's Cup World Series event in Portsmouth, will make a welcome return. Those participating will have the chance to win a Henri Lloyd jacket by posting the fastest time during the course of the show.
MDL will also be announcing the results of its annual ‘MDL in Bloom’ competition, which rewards green-fingered marina teams across all 19 UK locations, who have been working hard throughout the summer to ensure that their sites are looking their best.
Adrien Burnand, Head of Marketing at MDL Marinas, commented: “The Southampton Boat Show is a real highlight of the boating calendar for us and a show at which we really enjoy exhibiting. We look forward to welcoming visitors, along with our existing berth holders for exclusive hospitality, and have lots of exciting events planned. The show also gives us a great opportunity to recognise the achievements of our staff and the young people receiving their Sail Training Awards.”