Inside Track

Marine15 Call for Papers Deadline 31st July 2014

Organisers of the Marine15 conference, to be held next year on the Gold Coast, Australia from 3-5 May, have issued a call for papers. Abstracts are encouraged from all areas of the marine industry and should relate to at least one of the three streams of the conference: boating business, boating safety and marinas. A strong sub-theme across Marine15 will be marine tourism. Each stream will allow for detailed analysis of trends, case studies, new developments and best practices.
Boating Industries Alliance Australia chairman Darren Vaux said Marine15 is the major rallying point for the marine industry, not just in Australia, but across the Asia Pacific region. “This major international event attracts the very best national and international speakers. Already we are attracting keen interest from industry and government agency leaders in the USA, Europe and Asia.”
Abstracts for Marine15 should be no more than 200 words in length and a template for submissions is available from the Marine15 website at

Neil Ross Scholarships

Rhode Island Marine Trades Association (RIMTA) and Marine Trades Association of Maryland (MTAM) are the recipients of this year's Neil Ross Scholarships sponsored by the Association of Marina Industries (AMI).
The award is given to two trade associations each year who have shown excellence in promoting, supporting and sponsoring marine education and training. Each association is awarded US$1000 to give to one of their members to cover costs of International Marina Institute training programmes, the International Marina & Boatyard Conference, or the IMI fall (autumn) conference.
The Marine Trades Association of Maryland, led by executive director Susan Zellers, has always highlighted training as part of their overall association goal, but this year, through a $175,000  planning grant from EARN Maryland, they are able to really move training to the forefront for the industry in that state.
As a first step, MTAM convened a partnership of employers in the marine industry, economic development groups and trainers to determine the present and future marine industry jobs available. They are conducting a skills gap study which will help them to plan a programme that is customised to the needs of the businesses. They will also promote the marine industry as a career choice to post-secondary, post-college and veterans, and, in turn, increase the membership of the partnership.
Specifically, they are facilitating the placement of several interns at marinas, and organising a train the trainer programme whereby those looking to retire out of the marine industry can learn how to train their replacements.
The Rhode Island Marine Trades (RIMTA) is another state association at the forefront of workforce training, and has a programme that other states are beginning to emulate. RIMTA, led by executive director Wendy Mackie, has a plan to cultivate a strong workforce for the marine trades, to accommodate the growing needs of an expanding marine business climate, and an ageing workforce.
Elements of their workforce training programme include a Pre-Apprenticeship Programme, which is a six week training programme to give students a foundation on which to launch their careers. And new this year is a Marine Trades Marketing Internship that provides eleven young people with six weeks of summer work and experience in the recreational maritime industry, marketing, public relations and event planning. Both of these programmes are funded through state grants that RIMTA worked hard to acquire.
AMI Chairman Jeff Rose commented: "The effort that these two associations have put into training to ensure our industry has skilled employees to lead us into the future is exemplary and should be something we all work to model. I thank them for their hard work and congratulate them on their success."
The scholarship was formed in recognition of the numerous contributions that Neil Ross has made to the Association of Marina Industries and to the marina industry overall. Ross was a founder of the International Marina Institute, helping to set the standard in education in the worldwide marina industry. He facilitated the creation of the Certified Marina Manager (CMM) designation and worked to advance professional marina management. He remains an active consultant to the industry.

Oil pollution conference in UK highlights best practice

On 21 May, more than 60 delegates, including guests from across Europe, gathered in Falmouth, UK to attend a conference on oil pollution, hosted by Falmouth Harbour Commissioners (FHC). 
The event shared best practice and findings from recent research on oil pollution and included speakers from France, Spain, Portugal and the UK.
Staff from FHC also shared their expertise of a recent oil spill response test exercise. The outcomes incorporated the research findings from two European projects: Oil Spill Prevention and Response at Local Scales (SPRES) and Improvements of Shorelines Defences Against Marine Pollution (ISDAMP).
The two research projects, which started in 2012, aim to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of oil spill response in Europe and beyond. Falmouth Harbour Commissioners has been involved with the research alongside six other case study ports. The study has seen experts develop forecasting software to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of oil-collecting devices as well as designing risk assessment and planning tools used to inform and improve response plans.
As part of the event, FHC also talked through the deployment of a 280m boom, an oil-collecting device, which was in situ in Falmouth Harbour from 13 May to 23 May.
Simon Porter from the UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency, the authority responsible for UK pollution response and legislation, was among the event’s speakers. Commenting on the conference Porter said: “I know everyone got a lot from the conference. FHC’s booming solution was most interesting and innovative. I hope that others will see the benefit in this and it can be taken forward.”
For more information, visit or, for information on the European research projects, go to or

Ten awards announced at Australian industry gathering

At the 2014 Club Marine Australian Marine Export and Superyacht Industry Awards organised by the Australian International Marine Export Group (AIMEX), ten awards were announced.
Muir Winches Australia won the prestigious ‘Exporter of the Year’ award. It also received an award for ‘Best Export Performance - Large Exporter’’. The company has been a dominant force in Australian anchoring system technology since 1968 and is recognised as an industry leader in anchoring systems worldwide for superyachts, pleasure craft, fast ferries and commercial vessels from five to 140m in length. 
Richard Chapman was awarded Marine Export Industry Champion and Stephen Fisher awarded Superyacht Industry Champion in recognition of his work for the Australian superyacht industry.
Steber International was awarded the ‘Most Innovative Exported Product’ award for its state-of-the-art SSS Blue Bottle – Unmanned Surface Vessel (USV), which addressed the worldwide demand for small security vessels that could be operated by one person, on-shore and away from any dangers. This vessel can operate 24/7 and uses solar power. 
Arctic Steel won the ‘Best Export Performance – Small Exporter’ category. This Queensland-based business designs and manufactures a range of cast stainless steel marine engine water strainers. The company exports to 16 countries across North America, Europe and the Asia Pacific region. 
Superior received the ‘Best Marine Industry Export Performance – Medium Business’ award. Superior is a specialist in marine berthing systems, industrial flotation and accessories for commercial, domestic, private and government clients. 
The ‘Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show Best Export Marketing Strategy’ award went to GME Marine Division, which manufactures and distributes a broad range of marine electronics beacons, entertainment systems, active/passive antennas and accessories. 
Hanseatic Marine|SilverYachts, USA took out the prestigious ‘Superyacht Industry Business of the Year – Manufacturer’ award. SilverYachts is the only large superyacht builder in Australia and has enjoyed success abroad.
Rivergate Marina & Shipyard won ‘Superyacht Industry Business of the Year – Service Provider’. This Queensland-based marina is recognised as Australia’s and the South Pacific’s leading premier superyacht refit and project management destination. 
For more information about the AIMEX awards, contact

A new addition to TransEurope Marinas

Dart Marina’s Yacht Harbour in Dartmouth, Devon, UK has become the 60th member of TransEurope Marinas, an association of select European marinas offering reciprocal visitor benefits and discounts to its berth holders. 
Charles Bush, MD of Mayflower Marina in Plymouth and the UK representative of TransEurope Marinas, said: “We are delighted to welcome Dart Marina Yacht Harbour to the group. The South West has a huge appeal for cruising yachtsmen and Dart Marina adds a very attractive new destination for berth holders to enjoy. Our strategy is to have a necklace of destinations around the coast with each member marina being approximately a one day sail from the next. Geographically, Dart Marina is perfectly positioned to bridge the gap between Plymouth’s Mayflower Marina and Poole’s Poole Quay Boat Haven and it will also be a great jump off point for berth holders looking to visit Beaucette Marina in Guernsey. I am sure that Dart Marina will become a very popular destination for TransEurope visitors.”
Tony Tucker, director of Dart Marina Yacht Harbour, added: “The news that we’ve been accepted as a member of TransEurope Marinas presents an excellent opportunity for our own berth holders and the many berth holders from the other 59 members of the group. It’s also a great tourism boost for Dartmouth as our membership of TransEurope opens up our location to sailors from all over Europe who will be able to take advantage of the reciprocal arrangements between members of the group.”
For more information on Dart Marina Yacht Harbour, visit

Woolverstone Marina reopens following redevelopment

MDL Marinas' Woolverstone Marina in Suffolk, UK reopened in April following a £650,000 pontoon layout redevelopment, designed to enhance its berthing facilities. The investment marks a significant phase in the development of the marina and is part of MDL’s ongoing £34 million investment programme. 
The marina's mooring piles and pontoons on piers A to D were all replaced as part of the renovation and berth holders now benefit from extra width between berths and greater distance between fairways, allowing for easier access when mooring. 
The new pontoons are part of a larger refurbishment project at Woolverstone Marina, which also included installing a new access bridge to further increase ease of entry to the marina and completely re-decking the marina's fixed pier. A new state-of-the-art fuelling pontoon was also installed to replace the previous fuelling facilities.
Trevor Barnes, marina manager at Woolverstone Marina, said: “We had a brilliant time celebrating the results of all our work at Woolverstone Marina and would like to express our thanks to all our customers for the patience they’ve shown during the works. The marina has been completely transformed and the work has brought major benefits to our berth holders. The investment MDL has made in this redevelopment underlines our commitment to constantly improving our marina services and facilities for our customers.”
For more information about Woolverstone Marina, visit

Bandar Al Rowdha joins "Destinations"

Oman's largest, oldest and most prestigious marina, Marina Bandar Al-Rowdha, has joined 'Destinations', an international network of exclusive marinas created by ART Marine Marinas, a leading management company in the Middle East. The alliance creates more opportunities for relationships between marinas in the region and members enjoy discounted rates within the network. There are now 17 Destinations marinas. 
Bob Looker, general manager at Marina Bandar Al-Rowdha, says: “We are delighted to be a part of the Destinations network and look forward to a long and successful association with our colleagues around the world. Marina Bandar Al-Rowdha has a lot to offer, located as we are in the very heart of the fantastic cruising ground that is coastal Oman.”
Bruno Meier, CEO at ART Marine and head of the Marina division, commented: “I am pleased that Marina Bandar Al-Rowdha is the latest addition to our network of marinas around the globe … This alliance should benefit all yacht owners in the region and work in favour of the development of yachting in the GCC. 'Destinations' is not only about offering additional privileges to our berth holders, but also aims at creating stronger relationships and communication between the best and most exclusive marinas in the world.”
With 500 wet and dry berths, boatyard and travel lift, Marina Bandar Al-Rowdha is a world class facility. For more information, visit

MIA tour attracts 23 industry experts

A three-day tour of world class facilities in Australia, organised by the Marina Industries Association (MIA) attracted 23 marina managers, administrators and operators. Facilities included Gold Coast City Marina, Runaway Bay Marina, The Boat Works, Rivergate Marina & Shipyard, The Yard Brisbane, Southport Yacht Club, East Coast Marina, Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron and Wynnum Manly Yacht Club. The tour culminated in a visit to the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show, which offered an opportunity for participants to learn and compare world best practices in marina operations and network with other marina operators from the Asia Pacific region.
Adam Wade, general manager and CEO of Vuda Marina, Fiji said: “The ability to visit nine professionally operated marina facilities over a couple of days, while having the opportunity to tap into the knowledge and experience of many respected and experienced industry operators was invaluable.”
The MIA develops the marina study tours in Australia and overseas each year as part of an extensive education timetable for industry operators. 

Queensland's Southport Yacht Club receives MIA Gold Anchor

The award-winning Southport Yacht Club (SYC) in Queensland, Australia has received MIA Gold Anchor accreditation. At its most recent meeting, the Marina Industries Association (MIA) approved SYC’s Gold Anchor status as part of its MIA International Gold Anchor Rating Scheme for marinas.

MIA president, Andrew Chapman, said: “Southport Yacht Club is a great example of a destination marina. The Club is a recognised tourist draw card on the iconic Gold Coast, providing an extensive range of recreation and leisure activities for members and guests. It has well-maintained dockside facilities, services and booking practices. It is committed to environmental best practice and effective communication with its members. The Club’s signature restaurant was a worthy recipient of the 2013-14 Marina Restaurant of the Year.”

“The strong focus on customer service is evident and third-party member feedback conducted as part of the Gold anchor audit process supported this finding. The Gold Anchor Scheme sets a very high bar and it is a credit to Southport Yacht Club that it rated as a four and a half Gold Anchor Marina,” Chapman added.

RYA Active Marinas programme launches in Wales

Sailors and power boaters in west Wales can take advantage of the successful Royal Yachting Association’s (RYA) Active Marinas programme for the first time, thanks to two neighbours working together in a unique partnership.
Milford Marina and Neyland Yacht Haven are the first marinas in the region to become part of the programme, which has helped sailors improve their skills and develop their social sailing throughout the UK.
Although the two marinas are normally competitors, they will be sharing the programme to help people enjoy the waters of the River Cleddau and the coastline around Pembrokeshire.
“Milford and Neyland become our third and fourth Active Marina partners after the initiative was launched in Wales in August 2013 at the All Wales Boat Show,” said Steven Morgan, Welsh Yachting Association (WYA) chief executive officer. The scheme offers training and social events for sailors to hone their skills and find like-minded water enthusiasts. It encourages and supports increased berth holder activity by partnering with marinas, RYA-recognised training centres and yacht clubs to establish or enhance training and cruising programmes and social opportunities. 

Clean Marina status for Mourjan facilities

Two of Mourjan Marinas’ most impressive facilities – Lusail Marina in Doha, Qatar and Almouj Marina in Muscat, Oman – have received International Clean Marina accreditation.

In March, the marinas were visited by a representative from the Marina Industries Association (MIA) who carried out a flag hand-over ceremony in recognition of their achievements. The two boating destinations sailed through the audit stage of the accreditation process, each scoring in the mid-90s.

Lusail Marina and Almouj Marina were judged on their commitment to environmental management systems in an extensive list of areas, including storage of boats, fuelling, facility management, emergency planning, signage and information.

Wayne Shepherd, general manager at Mourjan Marinas, said: “We are delighted that two of our marinas are now Clean Marina accredited and pleased to be involved in such a programme. We are fully committed to reducing pollution in both the local community and boating industry as a whole.”

The inclusion of Mourjan Marinas’ prestigious facilities reflects the significant expansion of the programme internationally with accredited Clean Marinas now increasing not only in the GCC but also throughout China, Korea and Singapore.

MRA's RACE to Success conference to be held in California

The Marina Recreation Association’s 43rd Annual Educational Conference and Trade Show will launch in the first week of November at the luxurious Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel and Spa in Monterey, California, USA overlooking the scenic waters of the Pacific. 
The hotel offers lavish accommodation, exquisite dining and spacious recreational facilities – including a 24-hour gym, lighted tennis courts, heated swimming pools and an 18-hole golf course.
The theme for this year’s three-day conference is R.A.C.E to Success, with an emphasis on increasing Revenue, establishing Accountability, Customer service excellence and precise Execution.
Attendees not participating in the pre-conference events on Tuesday are now offered a new option in 2014. A new one-day series of educational seminar workshops has been launched, designed to teach new managers and operators the best practices for maintaining fresh and salt water marinas. The inaugural topic is "Introduction to Marina Operations", a series of topics drawn from the most popular seminars held at previous conferences. 
On the third and final day, a panel of experts will discuss the biggest legal challenges plaguing the marina industry and explore possible solutions to overcome them. A lively Q&A session is likely to follow.

Scholarships available to attend AMM courses

The Global Marina Institute (GMI) has announced that two international scholarships are available this year to attend Advanced Marina Management (AMM) courses in Australia and the UK. The AMM course is a highly regarded training course within the recognised career pathway for marina managers and is one of the key prerequisites to acquiring marina industry certification. 
The recipient of the British Marine Federation (BMF) Marinetek International Scholarship will travel to Australia to participate in the Marina Industries Association (MIA) AMM course in Sydney from 14-19 September. The recipient of the MIA Bellingham International Scholarship will travel to the UK to participate in the AMM course from 26-31 October on the south coast of England.
The 2011 scholarship winner, Michael Glanville, MDL area manager in the UK commented: “Being awarded the Bellingham Marine Scholarship was a once in a lifetime opportunity and it was a brilliant experience both personally and professionally. I would highly recommend that marina managers looking to develop their knowledge and skills attend an Advanced Marina Managers course.”
GMI chairman, Mick Bettesworth, said these international scholarships recognise the importance of education within the global marina industry. “The scholarships have been established to reward high achieving marina managers with the competence and skills that are so highly valued in the industry. The scholarships also contribute to the flow of knowledge across the globe. The recipients bring to each course a different and stimulating perspective and take back to their regions newfound knowledge, ideas and networks.”            
Winners of the respective scholarships will be announced at the ICOMIA World Marinas Conference 2-4 June in Istanbul, Turkey. 
Application forms are available on the GMI website
[Photo: GMI Chairman Mick Bettesworth]