London Boat Show starts on Friday

The 2010 Tullett Prebon London International Boat Show opens on Friday 8 January until Sunday 17 January. More than 500 exhibitors will be showcasing the best of the marine industry at the ExCel hall in London’s Docklands.

Exhibitors to the London Boat Show are trimming their sheets to harness the fickle winds of the

recessionary climate. So it’s no surprise to discover there will be 10 per cent

fewer of them setting up shop at the 56th edition, using 15 per cent

less space than last year.

Even so there are still more than 400 exhibitors

paying around £140 per square metre for their ExCel stands. Many have made the

most of deals offered them by National Boat Shows – a 30 per cent discount for

booking early.

So how does this affect the visitor?

Well there will be no more sitting on the floor to eat

your sarnies in the central boulevard as all stands will be shoe-horned into

the North and South Halls instead to maintain ‘intimacy.’

NBS have received complaints from visitors every year

since the show moved to ExCel from Earl’s Court, about lack of seating in this

area. Now there will be dedicated banks of seats.

The one concession in the boulevard will be a special

dedicated area for six branded owner’s associations including Moody, Westerly

and the Old Gaffers. NBS are running this as a ‘pilot’ and, if successful, more

OA space will be provided next year.

While Oyster and Northshore will have their normal

dedicated stands in the North Hall, 18 other marques including Hanse, Moody,

Bavaria, Legend and Najad will share a raised boardwalk in the North Hall paid

for by NBS to save these exhibitors their stand costs. Meanwhile in the South

Hall Beneteau and Jeanneau are cutting costs by combining both sailing boats

and power boats on their stands. It will be the first time sailing boats have

been on show in the South Hall.

Also visitors will now queue for tickets inside the

ExCel centre as the entrance will be part of the South Hall to allow the glass

lobby to accommodate queues. Again this is a benefit to the visitor by default:

part of bringing ‘vitality’ to the show, by shrinking what’s available and not

making it look too abandoned.

The Marine Trades Association will have an unusual

stand in the south east corner of South Hall with the display of Barangoola a

36- year- old Hunter 19, which has been rebuilt for under £5,000.  She will help raise funds for RNLI

through a £5 per ticket raffle to win her. This and the Owners’ Association

feature are territory one would have expected from the failed Sail, Power &

Watersports Show which was held at Earls Court, and a bid to see them off for

good!

By the 2011 London Boat Show, the ExCel exhibition

centre will have expanded by almost half – at 44 per cent – as the eastern end

of the venue is developed. NBS say they are considering using the extra space

for a conference area, forums, and training.

Located in the North Hall of ExCeL, the Show Stage

powered by Fairline has undergone a redesign and will be packed with non-stop

entertainment throughout the 10 days of the Show.  Each day the dance explosion ‘Rock the Boat’ will showcase fashion, as graduates of the

Brian Rogers Dance School perform a series of dance spectaculars incorporating

jazz and tap moves. Presenters include Giles Vickers-Jones,

host of ITV at the Movies for ITV1 and Torie Campbell, host of the Honda

Formula 4 stroke offshore powerboat series for ITV4. 

Visitors can hear inspirational stories from Boating

Heroes such as Geoff Holt and Hilary Lister, sailing legend Dame Ellen

MacArthur, and youngest ever round-the-world sailor Mike Perham.

Our sister magazine Classic Boat’sstand will feature a working boat yard,

experts on gaff rig and a fun feature: learning how to climb into a hammock.  

At the Brokers Village experts from the Boat Retailers and

Brokers Association and the Association of Brokers and Yacht Agents will be on

hand to advise on VAT, insurance and documentation for visitors looking to buy

a boat.

And world-famous yachting cartoonist Mike Peyton, now in his 90th year,

will be signing copies of his biography, Peyton, at the Adlard Coles

stand on 16 January.

 Outside in the

Royal Victoria Dock the Army will display amphibious warfare craft.

The title sponsor this year is Tullett Prebon, Citybrokers  who buy and sell shares for

commercial and investment banks. Many exhibitors will be hoping to snare their

bonuses.

Tickets and Show information

For all the latest information on the Show itself,

including opening times, ticket prices and sales, news, feature information and

exhibitors, log on and check out the Show’s website at www.londonboatshow.com

Visitors purchasing tickets in advance will enjoy a discounted rate,

which is available through the Show’s website, or by calling the ticket hotline

on 0844 209 0333.