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: email@example.com
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.
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.
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.
At MDL Marinas we pride ourselves on providing the very highest levels of quality and service at our marinas and facilities to our customers throughout the year. That’s why we’ll be investing further in our marina sites all over the country, to make sure that we maintain and wherever possible improve your marina experience.
Just some of the works and improvements planned for the coming months are:
Already completed this year has been extensive refurbishment of the facilities at Queen Anne’s Battery, providing beautiful modern showers, toilets and washing facilities, and customers at both Brixham and Torquay marinas are now able to use the new boat lift, making boat maintenance more convenient than ever. The 60 new berths opened at Chatham Maritime Marina earlier this year have also already reached capacity.
Six deserving youngsters who won a place on our Sail Training Awards this year are now back on dry land, after setting sail from Woolverstone Marina in late August for six days at sea. The winners were presented with their trophies on our stand at the PSP Southampton Boat show by the owner of MDL Marinas, Lord Iliffe.
The awards, which have been running for over 20 years, offer admirable young people - carefully selected due to their exceptional accomplishments, or for overcoming adverse personal circumstances – the opportunity of a lifetime aboard the training yacht.
This year’s week-long trip, which travelled from Woolverstone to Ocean Village Marina in Southampton, saw the youngsters plotting their intended course and getting involved with all elements of sailing. During the voyage the participants also had the opportunity to obtain the Competent Crew certificate, an RYA recognised qualification.
Nominations are already open for next year’s awards, with a round-trip from Southampton’s Ocean Village Marina taking place from Wednesday 16th to Monday 21st April. The deadline for submissions is Friday 10th January 2014, so if you know a young person who deserves a place on this once-in-a-lifetime trip, make sure to place your nominations as soon as possible.
For more information or to nominate a young person for next year’s awards, please visit www.sailtrainingawards.co.uk.