Show dates back to 1969 | News | Boating Business

INDUSTRY NEWS Show dates back to 1969 24/07/2023 Save article The Southampton International Boat Show was founded by Norman Kemish and Arthur Gale in 1969, with the show running for six days with around 50 exhibitors contained within Mayflower Park. SHOW FULLSCREEN SIBS began as a six-day event and expanded to a ten-day event The show was taken over by the British Marine Industries Federation (BMF) in 1983 with the army, supplying a small pontoon for mooring a handful of boats. The running of the show remained with the original organisers. During the early years of BMF ownership, early hovercrafts, water-bikes and concept hydrofoils were amongst the inventions that were given their first showing at the event. In 1986 Richard Branson displayed his Virgin Atlantic Challenger at the show, fresh from an unsuccessful transatlantic crossing, whilst Virgin Atlantic presented a fashion show in the Virgin Atlantic Hall. Other guest appearances included stars of the popular sailing soap, Howard’s Way. In 1988, Arthur and Norman handed over the reins of running the event to BMIF and the event saw a dramatic expansion on the water with 254 boats afloat. SHOW FULLSCREEN SIBS has seen many boat launches over the decades Over the years, the show expanded to a nine-day event, until 1997 when the event was debated by Parliament which granted permission for an extra nautical day of pleasure and the show was extended to ten days. Key dates in the history of the show include its first celebrity chef, Ross Buden, in 2004. The show has since worked with Anthony Worrall-Thompson, Jean-Christophe Novelli and James Martin and Si King and Dave Myers (a.k.a. The Hairy Bikers). SHOW FULLSCREEN Southampton Boat Show in 1993 In 2005, the event featured a makeshift beach, with tonnes of sand imported. In 2012, the show welcomed the successful sailing Team GB, fresh from the 2012 London Olympics and Paralympics. Visitors to the show also witnessed the Royal Marines attempting a 24-hour underwater 240-mile cycle. The first passenger boat was introduced in 2017 and in 2019, the show broke previous records with 600+ marine brands, 240+ boat and product debuts and 103,000 attendees. The 2020 edition of the show was cancelled due to the ongoing global pandemic COVID-19 but in 2022, the show bounced back with 685 stands and berths covering a 70,000+ sqm footprint. More than 650 craft were on display, with around 300 boats berthed in the marina. Topics Industry News

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