Many our marinas across the UK will be playing host to a series of exciting events for berth holders and visitors to enjoy.
Open Days, in conjunction with the RYA’s Active Marina Programme, will be held at several of our south coast marinas, including:
|Ocean Village Open Day||26th April, 10am to 5pm|
|Northney Marina Open Day||26th April, 10am to 3pm|
|Hamble Point Open Day||27th April, 9am to 6pm|
|Hamble Point Boat Show||10th and 11th May, from 10am on both days|
|Cobb’s Quay Open Weekend||17th and 18th May, from 10am on both days|
These free family events offer a great opportunity to try out new boating activities for the first time with training and ‘try a boat’ sessions, as well as providing a wealth of advice and information to help you make the most of your time on the water this season.
Woolverstone Marina will be the home of The East Anglian Boat Show this year, held in conjunction with the BMF. On Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd June visitors will be able to try their hand at a host of on and off the water activities designed to keep the whole family entertained, as well as browsing exhibits from major boat manufacturers and small independent businesses. For further information call Woolverstone Marina on 01473 780206 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Queen Anne’s Battery in Plymouth will also be welcoming visitors for two prestigious boating events. Thousands of sailing enthusiasts are expected to descend on the city for the La Solitaire du Figaro race from 11th – 15th June, with this top international sailing race generally recognised as the World Championships of single handed sailing. And if powerboats are more to your taste, make a date in your diary for the start of the exciting Round Britain Powerboat & RIB Challenge 2014, due to depart from Queen Anne’s Battery on 25th July, returning to the marina on 5th August after completing a full circumnavigation of Britain.
Click here for a list of events taking place at our marinas this season.
Hamble Point Marina will be hosting an Open Day in conjunction with the RYA Active Marina programme. There will be free on-water activities for all the family boat handling training and sea safety checks amongst many other things. Through Coastal Pursuits, you will be able to try out family training opportunities - for those over 6 years of age aboard a 31ft sailing yacht, 29ft sports cruiser motor yacht and, for those over 12, a RIB.
You can also try a boat – step aboard RIB Club boats and a 46ft motor cruiser for a on-water charter experience. There is a free water taxi service between Hamble Point Marina, Port Hamble Marina and Mercury Yacht Harbour and refreshments and hospitality will be available all day on board our 51ft motor yacht Dolphin.
On-water courses are free but a suggested donation of £5, with all proceeds towards supporting the Ocean Youth Trust South, would be greatly received
To book your place, please contact the Marina Office at Hamble Point Marina.
Ocean Village Marina is looking forward to welcoming visitors for an action-packed day on the water on Saturday 26th April, in conjunction with the RYA’s Active Marina Programme initiative. Open to all, this event offers a great day out for all the family with a range of activities, stands and demonstrations on offer.
From 10am to 5pm, Ocean Village Marina will be opening its facilities to local residents, boating enthusiasts and MDL berth holders and their families. Visitors are invited to experience exhilarating RIB rides, jet ski sessions and motorboat training, during ‘Try a Boat’ sessions provided by Solent Boat Training. There will also be on-shore demonstration sessions, covering sea safety, first aid and boat maintenance.
Visitors will be able to take advantage of a complimentary water taxi, running between Hythe and Ocean Village. Refreshments will also be available at the Royal Southampton Yacht Club.
Debbie Burns, Marina Manager at Ocean Village Marina, said: “We are really looking forward to welcoming the local community and our berth holders into the marina for an action-packed day of water activities. It’s a great opportunity for people to enjoy an exhilarating spell out on the water, brush up on their safety and maintenance skills, and enjoy our facilities here at the marina. The money raised by the open day will be donated to the Ocean Youth Trust South, a charity providing adventure under sail for young people.”
The open day is part of the RYA’s Active Marina Programme which encourages and supports increased berth holder activity by partnering with marinas, RYA recognised training centres, berth holder groups and yacht clubs to establish or enhance a programme of training, cruising and social opportunities.
Booking for on-water activities is essential. To book your place, call 023 8022 9385 or click on the button.
At MDL we have been hard at work investing in all of our marinas over the winter to achieve our ambitious target of continually improving the MDL estate with new facilities, new developments and extensive renovation work across many of our sites.
We’re continually reviewing and planning for the maintenance and renewal of our key marina infrastructure across the group, continuing our commitment to offering class-leading marinas and the finest customer experience.
Demonstrating our commitment, we are pleased to announce our plans to invest a minimum of £20 million across our 19 UK marinas over the next five years, marking the halfway point in our long term £34 million investment programme.
Here are just a few examples of where that money is going…
£650,000 renovation works at Woolverstone
This major redevelopment project, which has taken three months to complete, has enhanced the layout of the marina with all piles and pontoons on piers A to D replaced, giving a completely new look to the marina. Find out more here.
£150,000 investment in new facilities at Shamrock Quay
This full refurbishment of berth holder facilities at Shamrock Quay, which includes the redesign and upgrade of the existing showers including completely new hot water generation and supplies, upgraded heating, ventilation, toilets and lighting throughout, is set to be completed in time for the new boating season. Find out more here.
£500,000 winter dredge programme
Routine dredging operations are essential to maintaining full tidal access in the marinas and this is always a top priority. Dredging work is constrained to the winter months to preserve the sensitive marine environment and so as not to interfere with the boating season. This also means that our dredging teams and contractors are regularly faced with challenges from the weather, none more so than this year!
Despite the relentless strong winds and heavy rainfall, MDL is making good progress with its £500,000 winter 2013/14 dredge programme, with dredging works already completed at Cobb’s Quay, Hythe, Hamble Point and Mercury. Dredging at Northney, Sparkes and Saxon Wharf is planned for the remainder of March, and will be complete in time for the boating season and better weather. Next year’s dredging programme is already being planned with projects expected to total around £600,000 spread across many more of MDL’s marinas.
Further planned investment projects for 2014 - Further projects planned for the coming year include pontoon re-decking and replacements across many of the marinas, replacement of some of the pontoon mooring piles at Shamrock Quay, Port Hamble and Northney, ongoing maintenance of wavescreens, yard and roadway re-surfacing. There will also be investment in new berth holder facilities at Hythe Marina Village, which like Shamrock Quay will see a full refurbishment of the berth holder toilet and shower facilities.
With our first taste of spring warmth last weekend and the season bringing with it increasing daylight and the rebirth of flora and fauna, why not take the opportunity to discover some of the UK’s stunning coastline? Freedom Berthing allows you to explore the seashore from the West Country round to East Anglia, including cruising the Hamble and the world-famous Poole Harbour. Freedom Berthing members can stay at any of the marinas in our UK network for FREE* – perfect for stays away.
If you fancy something more adventurous why not sample the delights of cruising in France, Spain or Italy? As Europe’s largest marina operator, we are proud to offer the most comprehensive berthing package available, which will give you the chance to take advantage of unique and unrivalled access to some of Europe’s very best cruising destinations.
And as summer approaches you can start planning your European getaway, with access to our MDL marinas in Spain and Italy, as well as over 50 marinas on the northwest coast of France, from Granville on the Normandy coast right round to Port Médoc in the Gironde. Ideal for those who are keen to extend their cruising and discover new destinations without the additional cost of visitor berthing fees.
As part of your Freedom Berthing package you also receive a whole host of other benefits and savings throughout the year including fuel at cost, up to 30% off MDL boatyard services and various events and social activities - click here to see our events calendar. Your Freedom Berthing pack, which contains all the information you need to take advantage of the benefits, will be available for collection from the Marina Office. The pack will also include your Freedom Berthing card and a Tide Table booklet – we hope you find it useful.
You can also log on to MyMDL – the customer online portal - for the latest discounts and offers and to see at a glance all the benefits of Freedom Berthing. Don’t forget you can also use MyMDL to book and manage your marina visits and arrange berth swaps at other marinas, giving you – and your boat - even greater freedom than ever before.
* Subject to availability
Berth holders at MDL's marinas will be benefitting from several new faces for this coming season, as new businesses open on site at many of our marinas.
Shamrock Quay will be providing a brand new dining experience with the opening of the new Quay Fifteen restaurant. 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 fine dining without the fuss, to exceed expectation and give its guests an all round dining experience.
Quay Fifteen will join other recently-opened tenants at Shamrock Quay, Oil Spill Response, RIB Shack Marine and Inderkitchen. Existing tenant, Sakks Menswear, has also extended its premises on the site, whilst beauty parlour Beauty Bay also opened its doors late last year.
Berth holders and visitors to Cobb’s Quay in Poole can also try a new eating experience, with The Boathouse bar and restaurant now under new management and renamed Cobb’s Yacht Club Bar & Restaurant.
The restaurant’s new owner Julia Sweatman (pictured above with the team) said: “With superb marina views of Cobb’s Quay and Holes Bay, we offer a stylish and friendly environment for enjoying breakfast, lunch and dinner, 7 days a week. Our team has created an exciting range of dishes based upon what is fresh local & seasonal, with a special emphasis on fish & seafood. We are proud to offer an extensive range of beers, ales and ciders, an attractive modern wine list and freshly ground Illy coffee. We look forward to welcoming all to the Club.”
Meanwhile at Saxon Wharf, yacht upholstery firm Passmore of Southampton is now operating from its new unit at the marina. Amongst other customers, the established Colchester-based firm supplies Oyster Yachts, already a neighbouring tenant at Saxon Wharf.
Dream Yacht Charters, the largest privately owned charter company worldwide, is also now based within an MDL marina, following the opening of a base at Port Hamble Marina late last year. Managed under a joint venture with Britannia Corporate Events and Fairview Sailing, the firm will be welcoming sailors to explore the cruising available in the area, from Cowes to Lymington, Yarmouth to Gunwharf Quays, Hamble to Beaulieu and numerous other destinations in the Solent.
You can search our entire online Services Directory here.
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.