Britain's Biggest and Best Festival of Boating | Rockley


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Britain’s Biggest and Best Festival of Boating Southampton Boat Show retains its title as Britain's biggest and best festival of boating. 

Celebrating 50 years by showcasing more brands, boats and products than ever before. Southampton Boat Show 2018 drew to a close yesterday (Sunday 23 September) with organisers, exhibitors, sponsors and visitors all hailing the Show as a great success. A quality attendance, buzzing atmosphere, exciting new attractions and a wide range of products and services all on offer resulted in significant sales for exhibitors, with some reporting that this was their best Show ever.  

Rockley Operations Director, Rob Clark said: "At Rockley we have had another fantastic boat show and enjoyed meeting so many of our previous groups and students, as well as chatting to lots of people looking to get on the water in the future. 

"Once again we have run the show's popular Get Afloat feature as a core attraction and, in spite of Storm Ali, we managed to get visitors of all ages dinghy sailing, paddle boarding and kayaking throughout the week. For some this was a first ever watersports experience, whilst others wanted to have a go on a specific boat or board, and judging from feedback all seemed to go away happy – we certainly enjoyed Monday afternoon’s 15-18 knots of breeze and uninterrupted sunshine as a highlight for our water team. 

"Southampton Boatshow marks a key time our year, where the majority of our summer season is winding down and we are starting to put thoughts towards the following year, and this year has been no different with interest and bookings across our individuals courses and training, junior residential, RYA instructor training, summer family holidays and educational programmes."

The Show welcomed more exhibitors than last year, with over 100 of the 500+ fleet of brands on display new for 2018. Combined, these companies showcased more boats and products than seen in recent years at the Show. This included models from leading global brands such as: Arcona Yachts, Spirit Yachts, Jeanneau and Crewsaver, to name but a few. This is a testament to the calibre of this iconic event, which is internationally ranked within the world's top 10 boat shows and has now celebrated 50 years as Britain's biggest boating festival. 

Despite the worst weather conditions the Show has experienced in over 35 years, it welcomed c. 100,000 visitors across the 10 days to an exciting programme of daily activity both on land and water.  

Watch the wrap-up video >


Richard W. Roberts, CEO and Co-founder of TheYachtMarket, remarked: "We are delighted to have been the Title Sponsor for the second consecutive year at the 2018 Southampton Boat Show. It is a superb event that has grown to become a major highlight in the global boat show calendar. 

"It's a very special year for and the Show itself. Not only are we celebrating 50 years of the Southampton Boat Show, 2018 marks the 15th anniversary of TheYachtMarket, and the Show has provided the very best platform to celebrate all of our successes."

Lesley Robinson, CEO of British Marine, commented: "With such an array of boats, products, services and expertise on offer at this year's Southampton Boat Show, it truly was a celebration of 50 years of fun, lifestyle and excitement that can be had on the water. It once again offered visitors of all ages, from seasoned skippers to young beginners, the opportunity to explore the marine world and get out on the water, whether that be in a kayak, dinghy, sailing yacht or RIB. 

"The Show has been a resounding success with an exhuberant atmosphere across the 10 days and I am delighted to hear reports of strong sales from across a spectrum of exhibitors. This year's event was very much about looking ahead to the next 50 years whilst we acknowledge our heritage. We are proud to be Britain's biggest boating festival, as well as being internationally renowned, and we are now set to look at how we can develop the Show to meet the level of interest we are receiving."

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