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!
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.
The team at MDL’s Shamrock Quay in Southampton are celebrating after receiving recognition for maintaining excellent low risk operational standards at the marina. Presented by Allianz Insurance, the ‘Marina Excellence’ award recognises the overall presentation of the marina site, the team’s risk awareness, efficient record keeping, staff training and strong daily processes.
Jonathan Walcroft, Marina Manager at Shamrock Quay, was delighted to accept the award on behalf of the marina, along with a prize of £250. He said: “This award reflects the extra mile that the team at Shamrock Quay go to ensure we are operating in the safest way possible and to benefit all our berth holders by ensuring that we are keeping risk to a minimum. I’d like to say a big thank you to all the staff that helped us win this award.”
Ideally located within easy reach of the waters of the Solent, and Southampton’s bustling city centre, Shamrock Quay offers modern facilities and first-class berthing and marina services in a friendly, welcoming atmosphere. The marina has 255 berths, including a 70 metre superyacht berth, and offers storage ashore for 200 boats.
The team at MDL’s Shamrock Quay and tenants at the marina, Stormforce Coaching, recently ran a successful cruise in company event, inviting berth holders to join one of their experienced skippers on a cross channel cruise.
Prior to the event, berth holders were able refresh their knowledge with a passage planning session at Shamrock Quay. The group discussed what they wanted to learn from the crossing, their previous experience and any concerns they had about the journey ahead. Lead Skipper, Tommy then gave his briefing, talking the group through the approach to Cherbourg and giving everyone a few tips.
After the briefing, the company sailed into Portsmouth ready for their early morning departure to Cherbourg. The next morning, everyone was in good spirits as they began the crossing bright and early and all boats kept within 10 miles of each other with regular radio checks throughout. The first of the boats reached Cherbourg at 5pm after a calm flat day, with the crew ready to head into town for a well earned beer! The next morning, some of the group continued on to Alderney. The flotilla left Cherbourg and embarked on an easy sail, finishing the day with an evening meal at the Braye Beach Hotel.
Jonathan Walcroft, Manager at Shamrock Quay, said: “We were delighted with the success of our cruise in company event. Everyone had a great time and we had some encouraging feedback, with participants telling us they felt fully supported throughout the weekend and that they now felt now confident enough to cross the channel. We are planning similar events with Stormforce Coaching next summer, as this one went so well.”
Shamrock Quay in Southampton will host its 10th successful ‘Classics on the Quay’ event on Sunday 18th October. The monthly event, which has been running since January this year, regularly attracts over 60 classic cars and supercars to Shamrock Quay.
Shamrock Quay has organised a ‘Brunch Club’ at The Waterfront bar and restaurant and The Yellow Welly cafe. The Brunch Club will run from 10.30am – 12.30pm, which includes an offer from The Yellow Welly of free tea and toast with the ‘Driver’s Breakfast’.
Mark Elliott, Dockmaster at Shamrock Quay, a classic car enthusiast himself has been pleasantly surprised by the popularity of the event, commenting: “All our events this year have been a resounding success with over 60 vehicles and over 100 visitors at most events. We are expecting around 100 vehicles for our October event. We see many berth holders bringing their own classic cars and supercars along to the Quay, our event is open to anyone who owns a classic car from before 1990 or a supercar of any age”
To keep up to date on Shamrock Quay’s ‘Classics on the Quay’ please like their Facebook page by following this link. The next event dates are 15th November 10.30am – 12.30pm and December 20th 10.30am - 12.30pm.
MDL Marinas is proud to announce the winners of its 2015 MDL in Bloom competition, which rewards the ‘green-fingered’ teams across its marina sites.
The marina teams entered a variety of garden displays and floral arrangements into the competition’s five categories – Best Hanging Baskets, Best Tubs and Containers, the ‘X’ Factor and Best Overall Marina Display.
Scooping the coveted Best Overall award, along with the ‘X’ Factor and Best Hanging Baskets titles, was Cobb’s Quay Marina in Poole – receiving an engraved trophy and gift vouchers for its marina team during a special award ceremony at this year’s Southampton Boat Show. Meanwhile, the Best Tubs and Containers trophy was won by the team at Shamrock Quay in Southampton, who also received gift vouchers.
David Wilson, Manager of MDL’s Cobb’s Quay Marina, said: “We are delighted to have won the award for Best Overall Marina Display, as well as two additional awards. The team work so hard to make sure our marina always looks its best and is a clean, tidy and pleasant place for our berth holders to enjoy. This has inspired us for next year, when we hope to take home as many prizes again!”
Mike Glanville, Group Head of Operations at MDL, commented: “It’s great to be able to recognise and reward all the hard work and effort that goes into keeping our marinas looking fantastic with the MDL in Bloom awards. Across our marina network we have a diverse collection of open and green spaces, some marinas have large and beautifully landscaped grounds, others have small but equally immaculately presented outdoor spaces which have been transformed using hanging baskets, tubs and containers packed full with wonderful floral displays. Special recognition must go to the team at Cobb’s Quay Marina for their outstanding effort this year!”