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.
Following a year of fundraising activities as part of its 40th anniversary year, MDL Marinas has made a generous donation of £60,000 to Ocean Youth Trust South, a charity dedicated to providing ‘adventure under sail’ to young people aged between 12 and 25.
The £60,000 cheque was presented to the John Laing skipper Andrew Viney at Ocean Village Marina, with some of the young people the charity supports in attendance. The group came from Community Links, a charity based in Canning Town in East London which runs a wide range of community projects for over 16,000 people every year.
The money was raised through various activities throughout the year in particular during a special charity auction held at this year’s PSP Southampton Boat Show. There were some fantastic lots on offer including a skiing holiday in the Alps, a half-day Land Rover experience, a luxury hotel stay in Devon and a five-night sail training voyage. Funds were also raised through activities at each of our 19 UK marinas and boatyards throughout 2013, with MDL matching these amounts to reach the impressive total.
The donation will go towards the build of a brand new training vessel, which will provide ‘adventure under sail’ to young people from the widest possible range of backgrounds. With the charity’s current vessel, John Laing requiring constant maintenance after more than 20 years in service, the new vessel will allow Ocean Youth Trust South to open up the experience to a new group of disadvantaged young people.
Dean Smith, Marketing Director at MDL Marinas, commented: “We are very pleased and proud to have raised a significant amount for such a worthy cause. We have worked with Ocean Youth Trust South for over half of our 40 year history, and so it seemed only natural to further this relationship with fundraising during our anniversary year. It was an honour to be able to present the cheque to the charity, where we know it will be put to very good use.”
Mark Todd, CEO of Ocean Youth Trust South, added: “This donation is a fantastic stepping stone in our quest to raise approximately £3million to build our new training vessel. Whilst we rely on the goodwill of public contributions, we are absolutely delighted to receive such a large donation which puts us closer to our ultimate goal.”
Pictured with the cheque are Terry Bufton, Lucinda Neal, Mark Todd, Dean Smith, Andrew Viney, David Heffer and Amy Brown.
MDL Marinas, Europe’s leading marina provider, has overhauled its recycling and waste management strategy in order to divert 75 per cent of its waste away from landfill.
MDL has been working with leading recycling and waste management company, SITA UK, in order to prevent up to 750 tonnes of refuse generated at its 19 UK marinas and boatyards from entering landfill each year.
MDL’s new ‘zero to landfill’ waste solution involves regular collections of glass, mixed recycling (cardboard, plastic and cans), wood and metals at each marina. Berth holders are even able to recycle marine shrinkwrap – which will be turned into biodiesel – as part of the extended recycling services. Residual waste will be turned into Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF, which is used to power cement plants and power stations.
Anna Wyse, Environmental Policy Manager at MDL Marinas, said: “I believe MDL is one of the first UK marina operators to go down the 'zero to landfill' route for waste management. Working with SITA, we’ll be able to significantly reduce our carbon footprint, whilst also tightening up on costs. It’s a win-win situation and will benefit both our berth holders and our business.”
Leah Francis, National Accounts Manager at SITA UK, said: “This contract will mean that berth holders can do their bit for the environment. We look forward to helping MDL and its berth holders to be even more sustainable in the future.”
MDL already recycles 100% of its hazardous waste and purchases 100% renewable electricity for its sites. MDL is constantly striving to reduce its impact on the environment and in 2012 was the recipient of the Practical Boat Owner Magazine Award for Most Sustainable Service Provider.
‘Zero to landfill’ is a waste management philosophy designed to capture and re-use as much of the resource in the waste as possible.
Boat owners across the UK will be able to ensure that their boats are kept safe and well-maintained throughout the winter months, with great discounts on essential maintenance and berthing packages from MDL Marinas.
Visitors to many of MDL’s marinas on the south and east coasts can benefit from great value winter berthing packages, with prices ranging from as little as £27 per metre for a boat of up to 7m in length at Hythe Marina Village. Many of MDL’s marinas are also providing a further 10% discount on winter berthing for three months or more when paid in full in advance, an ideal option for those seeking out a home for their boat for the whole winter. More details of which can be found at www.mdlmarinas.co.uk/winter-berthing.
In addition to the winter berthing offers, marinas in all three of MDL’s UK Freedom Berthing zones are providing non-berth holders with the chance to experience MDL’s renowned service, with a 20% discount on lift, scrub, block off and re-launch at any of seven of MDL’s leading marinas, with some also providing storage ashore for a specified period.* There are additional packages at selected marinas, details of which can be found at www.mdlmarinas.co.uk/winter-boatyard-offers.
Dean Smith, Marketing Director at MDL Marinas, commented: “It’s very important to keep your boat well maintained, especially during the winter season when it tends to be used less frequently and is most at risk from adverse weather conditions. It’s important these options represent good value and we would encourage customers to book early as they are always popular.”
* Marinas offering 20% discount on lift, scrub, block off and re-launch are:
Hythe Marina Village, Shamrock Quay, Hamble Point Marina, Northney Marina, Sparkes Marina, Penton Hook Marina and Chatham Maritime Marina.
Boat owners in Torbay will soon be able to benefit from the very latest marine maintenance technology, thanks to the installation of a new lift at MDL’s Brixham Marina. The new boat lift dock will be open for business on Tuesday 7th October, bringing this exciting new technology to the area for the first time.
The new boat lift is only the third of its kind, with a state-of-the-art system capable of lifting boats of up to 50 tons and 60ft in length in just ten minutes, allowing quick and easy access for essential maintenance tasks. The whole process of lifting the boat, scrubbing the hull and returning it to the water can be completed in under an hour – far quicker and more convieinient than traditional methods. The new boat lift will be staffed by fully-trained operators and supported by MDL’s nearby Dartside Quay Marine Service Centre who will be on hand to provide a raft of maintenance packages, bringing their years of experience to a whole new group of customers in and around Torbay.
Shaw Smith, Manager at Dartside Quay Marine Service Centre and Brixham Marina, commented: “This new boat lift is set to be a real asset for all boaters in the area, whether they are local residents or visiting our beautiful coast for the first time. This is a unique service that cannot currently be found outside the Solent in the UK, and one, which we know will be hugely appreciated by the thriving marine community in Torbay.
“The extensive packages on offer will help boat owners get more out of their time spent on board – we can oversee the lifting and all aspects of maintenance, allowing owners simply to enjoy their leisure time. We hope to see many berth holders and visitors taking advantage of the new service over the coming months.”
Read more about the new Brixham Marina boat lift here.