MDL is very proud to have worked with Ocean Youth Trust South for over 20 years, helping to provide adventure under sail to young people who have shown exceptional accomplishments and qualities which have inspired or supported others.
The winners of our annual Sail Training Awards are now being chosen, with a final team of six due to set sail for an unforgettable sailing experience on board the Ocean Youth Trust South's training yacht John Laing next month. The youngsters selected will spend five nights living and sailing on board, and will become involved in all aspects of life at sea, including hoisting sails, helping with maintenance, sailing the boat at night and cooking and cleaning with the rest of the crew.
The Sail Training Awards have so far allowed over 140 young people the opportunity to experience a trip on board the John Laing, something which has been life-changing for some of our past winners.
And it doesn’t stop there. Through fundraising activities carried out as part of our 40th anniversary year in 2013, we were able to present the charity with a cheque for £60,000 at the end of last year (pictured above).
Ocean Youth Trust South is now looking to launch a major new campaign to enable them to purchase a new training yacht for use by the young people helped by the charity. The campaign is being dubbed “A new boat for a new generation” and the charity is keen to spread the word and get more people involved in this long term project to replace the John Laing.
Donations and gifts will help to ensure that young people continue to enjoy the benefits of Adventure Under Sail. If you would like to contribute, you can do so in a number of ways:
To find out more about the important work carried out by Ocean Youth Trust South, and to find out how you can help in their fundraising efforts, click here.
Word is spreading fast about Quay Fifteen, the new family owned, family run restaurant that will be holding its official launch event this Thursday 13 February at Shamrock Quay. The restaurant has even enjoyed its first celebrity visit already, with Jim Davidson popping in for lunch last week fresh from his Celebrity Big Brother success (pictured above with Head Chef Raz Ali).
Tucked away in a spot overlooking the River Itchen, just a stone’s throw from the centre of Southampton, Quay Fifteen’s aim is to deliver a fine dining experience without the fuss, to exceed expectation and give its guests an all round dining experience rather than just a meal.
For brothers Rocky and Raz, the restaurant is their first solo venture together, bringing together careers that have amassed a wealth of experience at exclusive venues across the south. Head Chef Raz brings his expertise from kitchens at the likes of Lainston House Hotel and Chewton Glen, while front of house Rocky has many years of experience as a sommelier at Michelin starred 36 On The Quay in Emsworth, as well as Le Gavroche in Mayfair, home to the world renowned Roux brothers, and a number of Rocco Forte Hotels.
With Quay Fifteen, the brothers aim to bring their strong hospitality background to the fore, engaging customers with the sights, sounds and smells from their large open plan kitchen, as well as encouraging interaction with staff. All this contributes to the upbeat, family-friendly atmosphere but at the same time the brothers’ primary focus is on offering top quality food and service. They are committed to sourcing locally and using a mixture of modern and classical cooking techniques with various International influences to create an ever changing offering of beautifully presented courses.
Commenting on this Thursday’s opening event, Rocky said: “We’re really excited to be officially launching the restaurant this week and can’t wait to bring our new “fine dining without the fuss” experience to the people of Southampton. The feedback from our limited lunchtime and weekend openings in recent weeks has been great and we’re looking forward to taking bookings seven days a week.”
Dean Smith, Marketing Director at MDL, added: “We are proud to be supporting Rocky and Raz in this exciting new venture at Shamrock Quay. It’s a great development for the marina as a whole and the restaurant should prove to be a real destination venue, bringing in people from all over the area to experience their great food and hospitality by the waterside.”
You can find out more about Quay Fifteen on their website and they are open for bookings on 023 8033 6615, with a limited number of tables still available for their special Valentines Taster Menu this Thursday-Saturday.
Illustrating our continued commitment to offering class-leading marinas and the finest customer experience, we are continuing to invest in our marina portfolio.
Work already undertaken in 2013 included a full refurbishment of the facilities at Ocean Village Marina (pictured above right) as well as at Queen Anne’s Battery in Plymouth, where customers are now benefitting from new modern showers, toilets and washing facilities. Customers at both Brixham and Torquay marinas are able to use the new boat lift, making boat maintenance more convenient than ever, and the 60 new berths opened at Chatham Maritime Marina in the summer have already reached capacity.
Over the winter months works will continue and will include a complete re-deck of the catamaran berths at Sparkes Marina, alongside improvements to car park lighting and the installation of a new refuse area which will improve the appearance of the marina entrance. Northney Marina will be carrying out comprehensive maintenance works too, helping to improve the appearance of the marina.
At Shamrock Quay, 2014 will see the opening of a new on-site restaurant, Quay Fifteen (above), whilst Cobb’s Quay will also be offering new dining options as The Boathouse bar and restaurant comes under new management. Maintenance works are also continuing at Hythe Village Marina, whilst further improvements to the pontoons, marina electrics and facilities are planned for both Mercury Yacht Harbour and Port Hamble Marina. Investment at Hamble Point Marina continues as well, upgrading the main facilities block and marina reception / administration facilities, improving CCTV coverage and increasing the number of pontoon trolleys available.
Eamonn Feeney, Managing Director at MDL Marinas, commented: “We are committed to investing in our marinas and continuing to improve the facilities we offer. As Europe’s leading marina operator we refuse to stand still and are continually looking at ways to not only improve and update our marinas, but also to ensure our customer service and locations are of the very highest standards. This is why many of our customers have been with us for years, and for us the focus always remains on ensuring our berth holders and visitors continue to get the very best out of their boating.”
It may be the depths of winter, but MDL Marinas will be braving the cold and heading for the London Boat Show, taking place at ExCel from 4th - 12th January 2014. We will be welcoming visitors to our Stand E143 – pay us a visit to find out more about what MDL Marinas can offer you.
Staff will be on hand throughout the show to provide full details on all our marina locations, as well as more information about Freedom Berthing, the most comprehensive marina package in the marketplace, which for 2014 includes unlimited free stays across our entire UK network plus the freedom to cruise to fantastic destinations in northwest France, Spain and Italy.
You can also register for the MDL Experience at the show, allowing you to visit the marina of your choice for a free no-obligation overnight stay and personal marina tour. Or, simply click here for more details and to register online.
We look forward to seeing you there!
We’re inviting you to nominate deserving youngsters for the trip of a lifetime, with nominations still open for this year's MDL Sail Training Awards.
We are proud to have run the awards in conjunction with Ocean Youth Trust South for over 20 years. The annual awards are designed to recognise, reward and challenge young people who have shown exceptional accomplishments and qualities which have inspired or supported others.
The winning youngsters will receive an unforgettable sailing experience on board the Ocean Youth Trust South's training yacht John Laing in April 2014. The six youngsters selected for the trip will spend five nights living and sailing on board, and will become involved in all aspects of life at sea, including hoisting sails, helping with maintenance, sailing the boat at night and cooking and cleaning with the rest of the crew.
Past winners have included young people who have been outstanding achievers, as well as those who have been involved in voluntary work, those who have never had the chance to travel abroad, and those with added family responsibilities.
Anyone working with young people can send in nominations, including teachers, guide or scout leaders, youth group leaders, friends and employers. Anyone can nominate, apart from parents, guardians or close family. If this sounds like you or someone you know, click here for further information or to make your nomination.
Don’t forget the deadline – nominations must be made by Friday 17th January 2014.
Earlier this year we brought you the good news that several of our marinas have achieved the coveted Five Gold Anchor status, the highest grading possible from The Yacht Harbour Association.
We’re very proud to announce that two more marinas have joined the ranks of award-winners, with Five Gold Anchor status now granted to Hamble Point and Chatham Maritime marinas. The assessments included a mystery shop, berth holders survey and an audit against a wide selection of criteria, offering an impartial review of the services and facilities available.
The two marinas are to be congratulated on their achievement, which is just another demonstration of the consistently high quality offered by our marina portfolio.
The scheme has been designed by The Yacht Harbour Association, with contribution from the RYA, to help boat owners make an informed decision on where to berth.
The news follows the Five Gold Anchor status achieved by all three of our Thames marinas, as well as Shamrock Quay, Northney Marina and Mercury Yacht Harbour earlier this year.
The full list of MDL's marinas with Five Gold Anchor status is now as follows:
For more information on the Gold Anchor Award scheme visit www.which-marina.com.