More than 92,000 people attended the 54th Southampton International Boat Show.
Show organisers, British Marine, say that despite the weather causing havoc mid-week, with high winds and driving rain, exhibitors, sponsors, and visitors alike heralded the show a success.
The show – which covered an area of 70,000+sqm – saw more than 650 craft, with more than 350 boats berthed in the marina, an increase of 17% year on year.
These ranged from the Sunseeker 100 Yacht and the Spirit 75 to the electric hydro-foiling Candela C-8 and craft of all shapes and sizes. The show also welcomed 86 new companies.
“There has been a great atmosphere at this year’s show,” said Lesley Robinson, CEO, British Marine. “We have been delighted to welcome over 92,000 people over the past ten days and we had been well on track to hit our target of over 100,000 visitors this year, until the bad weather hit.”
New features included The Shipyard, with its live music and DJ sets, the Beach Haven & Watersports Lake from Haven Knox-Johnston, and a fly past from the Red Arrows, while this year’s celebrity guests included Captain Sandy from the TV Show Below Deck Mediterranean, and Daisy Kelliher from Below Deck Sailing Yacht.
“Due to lightening on the first Sunday and to the exceptionally high winds on Tuesday and Wednesday, a decision was made to close all of the show’s water activities for the safety of our visitors and exhibitors,” added Lesley. “Despite this we still managed to host over 9,000 visitors on the water, who were able to try everything from dinghy sailing, paddleboarding and kayaking to RIB rides, yacht cruising and motorboating.”
Featured craft included the tall ship Thalassa, an F8 landing craft, the motor gun boat 81, the high-speed launch 102 and a mini cruise ship.