Liverpool is set to host the very first Northern Boat Show in June.
Proposals to bring the maritime showcase to the city were made public by Carnah Events in November, and since then, the company has been inundated with requests from exhibitors who want to be part of this brand new event.
Set to form part of the 2015 International Mersey River Festival which runs from 5-7 June, it is expected that there will be around 150 exhibitors and 60 boats attracting an estimated 25,000 visitors.
One of the first to sign up was Clipper Marine and they will showcase a series of Bavaria yachts and motorboats. Other exhibitors include Hamble Point Yacht Charters, Pantaenius boat insurance, Marine Teak and WiFi Onboard.
Richard Milbourn, Carnah Event Director, said: “Since we announced the boat show we’ve had a fantastic response which just goes to show that there is a real appetite for this show in the north.
“Those from the industry who have approached me so far are massively excited at the prospect of showcasing their product in Liverpool which is world-renowned for its majestic waterfront and maritime heritage.
“It’s also really important that the event will be part of an already fully established and hugely popular maritime event. We will hopefully add to the buzz around the city and make the festival bigger and better for 2015.”
The event will see world class sailing and power boats head for the Mersey attracting buyers from across the country who will not only be able to see these vessels against the beautiful backdrop of the waterfront, but also have access to the latest marine products, systems and services.
It is intended to showcase the latest sailing and power boats in Albert Dock and there will be a land-based exhibition on the quayside next to Salthouse Dock.
Assistant Mayor and Cabinet Member for culture, tourism and events, Councillor Wendy Simon, said: “We’re delighted the Boat Show is definitely going ahead, and we’re obviously pleased, but not surprised of course, about the positive response to Liverpool as the host city.
“We know as a city we excel when it comes to staging outdoor events and we’re always keen to look at ways in which we can enhance our events and make them appeal to a wider demographic. The Boat Show will add a different dynamic, bringing in a wider audience who can not only experience this new offer but see first-hand how Liverpool puts on world-class, free events.”
Early Bird tickets for pontoon access to the boats are just £2.50 per day, with the price going to £5 from Friday 1 May. The land-based part of the exhibition is free to all visitors. To book tickets visit http://www.northernboatshow.co.uk/.
Carnah Events has a strong track record of delivering highly successful consumer shows including The Northern Home Show in Manchester and The Southern Home Show held in North London’s Alexandra Palace.
The event is supported by the Albert Dock, Gower Street Estates and the Canal & River Trust.
Peter Cronin, director of development and marketing for Albert Dock Liverpool, said: “Albert Dock, along with our Waterfront partners, Canal & River Trust, are very supportive of the developing plans to bring The Northern Boat Show to Liverpool. The River Festival is a well-established and amazing event for the economy of the Dock and the city, and we look forward to working with Culture Liverpool and the event organisers as the Boat Show will be a brilliant addition to this annual event.”
Chantelle Seaborn, waterway manager with the Canal & River Trust which looks after the dock waterspace, said: “We are delighted to welcome a new boat show to Liverpool. It will certainly add to the vibrancy of the River Festival and be a fantastic attraction for boat enthusiasts.”
In 2014, the International Mersey River Festival attracted around 200,000 visitors and saw a packed programme of maritime activities for all the family. Tall Ships, naval vessels and barges were just some of the boats which people could explore. Walking tours, Yakovlev Air Shows, model boat displays, flyboarding, Zap Cat racing, have-a-go water sport sessions and the 25th International Canoe Polo Tournament also proved hugely popular.
Music on the Waterfront also forms part of the River Festival celebrations and last year the waterfront stage saw a DJ set from Craig Charles, as well as performances from acts including The Christians, Jaki Graham, Esco Williams, the Band of HM Royal Marines Scotland.
Julie Turner, Event Manager for the International Mersey River Festival, said: “Richard initially approached us back in September about including the Boat Show in the 2015 festival programme and it’s fantastic that we are now in a position to announce it’s going ahead.
“We’re always looking for ways in which to grow the festival at no additional cost to the city, and this has been a great way to achieve this. It’s also a really good example of how we can work in partnership with the private sector to bring new and exciting elements to our events programme.”