04 March 2021 : Somerset West & Taunton Council News
The Marine & Property Group Ltd (The Marine Group) is pleased to announce that it has acquired Watchet Marina. The harbour will be operated by the company from 1 April 2021.The acquisition comes after careful and collaborative negotiations between The Marine Group, Somerset West and Taunton Council and Watchet Harbour Marina Ltd, and has been concluded for an undisclosed sum.
The Marine Group would like to thank all parties for working so constructively to complete the transaction.
The Marine Group will immediately commence a major programme of works to upgrade the harbour and ultimately deliver a first-class marina matching the very best in the UK.
The company’s Harbour Management team will commence a comprehensive dredging campaign in the late spring which, by the summer, will ensure that adequate water depths are available within the marina. A long-term maintenance programme will mean the harbour never again suffers from siltation issues.The rehabilitation of the harbour will be community focused. The Marine Group have a track record of working with local businesses and communities and welcomes local engagement.
Christopher Odling-Smee, Director of The Marine Group, said: “Watchet is a proud and beautiful town and we owe it to the community to deliver a harbour that reflects its potential as a destination and a fabulous place to live. We are pleased to also welcome the existing marina employees to the company and to count them amongst our team.”
The Marine Group has ambitious investment plans for Watchet and, working closely with the community, plans on delivering upgraded landside facilities in future.
Cllr Marcus Kravis, Executive Member for Asset Management at Somerset West and Taunton Council, said: “We are delighted to be working with The Marine Group and support their plans to invest in Watchet. Their development plans will bring welcome investment, jobs and enliven the harbour.”
Berth holders at Watchet will benefit from the company’s visitor exchange network and, when restrictions allow, a busy calendar of events with open days and regattas.
Director of Operations Rob Freemantle said: “Having conducted a successful dredge campaign in the outer harbour at Watchet in 2020, we are familiar with the technical dredging requirements of the marina. The Harbour Management team are looking forward to be working on a comprehensive campaign to renovate Watchet Marina.”