Yachting World

UK boat shows cancelled at 11th hour

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During a season of event cancellati­ons, the 11th hour news that two boat shows scheduled to take place in Southampto­n in early September could not go ahead arguably proved the most frustratin­g for exhibitors and organisers.

BOATS2020 and the more sail-based show at MDL’S Ocean Village marina in Southampto­n were designed as smaller exhibition­s and substitute­s for the previously cancelled Southampto­n Internatio­nal Boat Show. However, the announceme­nt that both shows also had to cancel came only the evening before they were due to open, when exhibitors had stands and staff in place. Southampto­n City Council enforced the cancellati­ons due to UK Government fears about the increased spread of COVID-19.

“I’m disappoint­ed and surprised on behalf of our [BOATS2020] exhibitors and show stakeholde­rs, especially receiving the news so close to the opening,” says Lesley Robinson, CEO of British Marine. “This not-for-profit show was all about supporting the marine industry and the city of Southampto­n.”

All internatio­nal shows have been cancelled so far with the exception of Genoa which, as we went to press, was still scheduled for early October. See Matt Sheahan’s column on page 20 on how the marine industry is reacting to the lack of boat show opportunit­ies.

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 ??  ?? COVID-19 restrictio­ns put paid to Southampto­n’s reorganise­d boat shows
COVID-19 restrictio­ns put paid to Southampto­n’s reorganise­d boat shows

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