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Stars arrive for the opening of the 64th London Boat Show

by Annabel Wildey 11 Jan 08:57 UTC 10-14 January 2018
BT Sport personality, Jake Humphrey and England World Cup legend, Sir Geoff Hurst, made a special guest appearance alongside the Jules Rimet Trophy © Robert Stanwyck

The 2018 London Boat Show opened on Wednesday to a host of celebrities, global launches, hundreds of stunning boats and sporting silverware to wow visitors. Running until Sunday 14 January, the Show celebrates everything you can do and enjoy on the water. Bringing a world of inspiration and free on the water experiences, visitors are being treated to five days of the very best the boating world has to offer.

England World Cup legend, Sir Geoff Hurst, made a special guest appearance alongside the Jules Rimet Trophy, on loan from the FIFA World Football Museum. Sir Geoff was joined by BT Sport personality, Jake Humphrey, as he officially opened the Sunseeker International stand. The line-up of sporting paraphernalia displayed at the Show was completed by the Emirates FA Cup, available for visitors to get up close and personal to throughout the Show.

The event welcomes 347 exhibitors this year (up from last year) with 70 of those new for 2018. With 94 boat and product launches including 11 global debuts, 5 European, 29 UK and 49 Show launches, as well as fantastic new attractions for 2018, the Show is a spectacle not to be missed. World launches include the magnificent Princess V50, Hanse 348 and Rodman's Spirit 42 Coupe.

As well as some spectacular boats on offer, visitors will be treated to a variety of brand new and exciting attractions for 2018 across the course of the five-day Show. Unmissable features include the Beach Club, offering the ultimate urban beach experience. Visitors can come and chill out on the sand or take a free 'chalk and talk' beach class. Providing activities both on the land and water with the Show's large activity pool, this interactive area offers the chance to try out some of the latest watersports trends, including kayaking, dinghy sailing and Stand Up Paddleboarding. Also new to the Show this year is the Adventure Park, a new interactive zone featuring an indoor cable wakeboard park and a Stand Up Paddle Boarding experience.

Sky Sports Presenter Alec Wilkinson will once again be on hand to deliver a terrific programme of live speakers on the Show's Legend Theatre. Heroes of the sailing world appearing on stage include Mike Golding, one of the world's most successful offshore sailors, Dee Carrari, the first woman to sail single handedly around the world in both directions, Alex Thompson, the fastest Brit to sail solo round the world in a monohull, and Tracy Edwards MBE, British Sailing legend and the first woman to receive the Yachtsman of the Year Trophy.

Furthermore, the Practical Boat Owner Theatre is offering visitors the chance to find out latest hacks, tips and skills from now until Sunday. Knowledge is power and the expert speakers will be offering advice from how to kit up for the next cruise, what to take and how to cruise on a budget alongside learning the best time to use a jib or how to interface new and old electronics.

British Marine CEO, Howard Pridding, comments: "We have enjoyed a fantastic start to the 2018 London Boat Show. There has been a great buzz around the Show and some fantastic first day sales being reported by our exhibitors.

"The buoyant atmosphere is certainly reflected in the recent statistics launched today by British Marine which shows revenue from the UK's leisure marine industry has achieved its sixth consecutive year of growth. We're thrilled to have seen it rise 3.4% to £3.12bn, the highest level since the financial crisis of 2007/2008.

Howard concludes, "With a fantastic line up of events taking place over the next four days, with some brilliant activities available for the whole family the Show is one not to be missed."

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