New features for Soton Show announced

National Boat Shows is planning to build a central stage and screen to show on-water activity at this year’s Southampton Boat Show, which is also the event’s 40th anniversary.

They also promise a fun, interactive feature for the family which will be able to accommodate large numbers of visitors, and they will be increasing the amount of on-water activity. The layout for this year’s show will change. Southampton City Council is relocating the children’s play area from the centre of Mayflower Park, creating extra space that the organisers will use to use to trial new initiatives. It’s here, that the new stage and screen will be built. A two-storey structure will house extra meeting rooms and hospitality rooms. Downstairs they plan to attract non-marine, lifestyle exhibitors.

Following research from last year’s show, which revealed that visitors would pay for an enhanced experience, the organisers are trialling a special Platinum Ticket, to attract a premium audience. The £85 ticket will offer a special Platinum lounge, hospitality and a Millionaire’s Yacht Experience. The offer will be available to just 108 people per day.

Last year’s show was attended by 127,345 people – 8% up on 2006 and the third highest attendance in the show’s history. This year, they are aiming to increase attendance to 130,000.

They are also aiming to enhance their top six features:
– the Hydropool Marina
– ‘Search & Rescue’
– OnBoard
– Try-a-Boat
– a Tall Ship

In 2009, Southampton Boat Show will be undergoing even more major changes with the relocation of the main entrance and Solent Hall, due to developments and expansion of the West Quay shopping centre.