Tag Archives: UKSA


HRH The Princess Royal will be visiting Cowes Week this year, for two days; from 31 July to 1 August 2017.

During her stay, in her role as President of Riding for the Disabled, she will visit the Isle of Wight Riding for the Disabled at Osborne House. She will also visit the offices of Cowes Week Limited, as Admiral, attend a Reception at the Royal London Yacht Club, and attend dinner as an Honorary Member of the Royal Yacht Squadron.

On the following day, she will start the Triple Crown Yacht Race from the Royal Yacht Squadron Battlements, before as Patron, visit the United Kingdom Sailing Academy.

HM Lord-Lieutenant, Major General Martin White CB CBE JP said: “I am very pleased to welcome back to the Island HRH, particularly during Cowes Week when she will also have an opportunity to see other aspects of life in our community.”

Chairman of the Isle of Wight Council, Councillor Lora Peacey-Wilcox, said: “We are delighted that HRH is visiting and continuing the Royal presence for Cowes Week.”


Notes to Editors:

For further information contact:

Riding for the Disabled:  Julie Elliston 07790 791057

Cowes Week Limited, Kate Johnson 01983 248003

Royal London Yacht Club, Secretary Kate Paris 01983 299727

Royal Yacht Squadron, Secretary Trisha Lewington 01983 292191

United Kingdom Sailing Academy – Rosie Peckham 01983 294941 ext 177

Issued by:
Helen Wheller, Media Team Leader

Email: helen.wheller@iow.gov.uk


The 2016 Isle of Wight Festival of the Sea: bringing together sailors, pirates, bards and story tellers (June 18-July 3)

The world’s leading annual solo sailing race, the Solitaire Bompard – Le Figaro comes to Cowes on the Isle of Wight in 2016 from June 22 to 26.

A new highlight for the Isle of Wight’s Festival of the Sea, which this year runs from June 18 to July 3, the race will also bring with it one of the most eye-catching five-day coastal events to be seen anywhere around the UK coastline this summer.

The Solitaire Race Village in Cowes will be free to visit during five full days fun, and will include food markets, a drinks bar, live music, plus an opportunity for those who want to try their hands at sailing on the Solent – courtesy of the sailing academy UKSA. Alongside the live entertainment, there will be a host of interactive family-friendly stands and activities.

Portsmouth has had the America’s Cup, Southampton has had the Volvo Ocean Race and this is being seen as another chance to reaffirm Cowes as the UK and Europe’s sailing capital. A genuine spectacle of the sea, and a showcase of top level sailing, the Solitaire is sure to attract crowds from both the island and mainland to the Isle of Wight.

Solitaire Bompard – Le Figaro takes just over a month to complete and has a reputation of pushing competitors to the edge – one man, one boat, 1,500 miles of rough seas, harsh weather and little sleep!

The Isle of Wight is one of four venues playing host to this world-class sporting event in 2016. Starting from Deauville – a grand French town twinned with Cowes – on the June 19, the Solitaire competitors are expected to dock into in Cowes Yacht Haven around the June 22 after sailing 510 miles. The race will then restart in the Solent on Sunday June 26 – a spectacle not to be missed from the water, or the Parade – and from Cowes, the fleet will race to Paimpol (France), and finish in La Rochelle (France) on July 7.

Torbay was the previous UK host for the event, when 20,000 visitors passed through the Race Village in just five days. This year’s race, however, is a flagship event in the Isle of Wight’s 2016 Festival of the Sea, which has already become a leading event on the Island calendar, and brings together a host of diverse events for all the family.

Shipwreck Isle, for example, arrived on Appley Beach with a swashbuckling swagger in 2015, as the golden sands became a pirates’ paradise for one glorious day. And this year’s event on June 18 and 19 promises to be even bigger and better, with two days of fancy dress fun, and an evening of entertainment on the Saturday night. Shipwreck Isle of free of charge to visit – but all visitors are urged to dress up as a pirate for the day, to become a part of the event.

Another highlight of the 16-day Festival of the Sea is The JP Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Yacht Race on July 2, which will bring together 16,000 sailors and 1,600 boats for the one-day race. Only the London Marathon, and the Great North and South runs can compete for scale, as The Solent and the English Channel turn into a sea of colourful sails.

Story telling, lighthouse tours, coastal crafts, and maritime melodies will also feature on the full schedule of events in 2016. As will The Isle of Wight’s Mardi Gras, which is set to be held in Ryde on June 25, and will have a Shakespeare theme in the year which marks the 400th anniversary of the Bard’s death. A story told through a community performance in the Island’s biggest seaside town, the procession will be led by costumed actors and drummers representing Shakespeare and the Lord Chamberlain’s men.

Full details of The Isle of Wight’s 2016 Festival of the Sea will be found at http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/whats-on/events/festival-of-the-sea. For information on where to stay, visit http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/accommodation.


For further information about The Isle of Wight, please contact:
Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Visit Isle of Wight
07766 705672

Notes to Editors
Working in partnership with Visit England, Visit Isle of Wight Ltd (VIOW) is responsible for developing tourism and attracting more visitors to the Isle of Wight. As well as the consumer website www.visitisleofwight.co.uk the DMO also operates a small industry website containing recent research and tourism news along with links to Visit England reports and opportunities www.visitwight.org

Cowes brings colour and spectacle to the Isle of Wight

Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week on the Isle of Wight has been a significant fixture on the British sporting summer calendar ever since 1826, and has gone on to become one of the longest running and most successful sporting events in the whole of the UK.

Offering a breathtaking combination of colour and spectacle, it is a highlight for residents and visitors to the Isle of Wight alike, as well as yet another reason for planning a visit to the Island in the height of summer.

The first ever race at Cowes was for a Gold Cup valued at £100. Just seven yachts competed for this under the flag of the Royal Yacht Club (later to become the Royal Yacht Squadron which is celebrating its bicentenary this year). The following year King George IV indicated his approval of the event by presenting The King’s Cup, which was subsequently competed for at every event up to 1939, and the event became known as Cowes Regatta.

The regatta has evolved enormously since 1826 and, in staging up to 40 daily races for between 850 and 1,000 boats, it is today the largest sailing regatta of its kind in the world.

Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week will take place this year from Saturday August 8th to 15th, and will feature an exciting and diverse blend of competitive sailing – as well as a strong social scene.

The 8,000 competitors range from world class yachtsmen to weekend sailors and household celebrities, and in excess of 100,000 visitors come to enjoy the festival atmosphere and experience that the event offers.

Traditionally a key component of the British Summer “Season”, taking place after Goodwood and before the Glorious 12th, the event has attracted both British and foreign Royalty – and many famous faces. The Duke of Edinburgh and Princess Anne are frequent visitors.

Events of particular interest this year include a Family Fun Day on August 9th; Ladies Day on August 11th, which is a celebration of women in sailing, as well as a spectacle in its own right; and the Artemis Challenge on August 13th when visitors can watch some of the best boats and sailors in the world set off on a 50 mile sprint around the Isle of Wight, to win a £10k charity prize. (Teams competing in the Artemis Challenge in the past have included sports stars Zara Phillips, Amy Williams, Will Greenwood, Mike Tindall and James Haskell, as well as other stars from the world of entertainment, including Davina McCall & Bryan Adams).

Further details about Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week can be found at www.aamcowesweek.co.uk and the event can be followed on social media through @Cowes_Week and #CowesWeek.

The Isle of Wight, or course, has a great sailing heritage, and is the perfect place to visit for anyone who not only wants to watch events such as Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week, but also the wants to spend time on the water themselves

UKSA in Cowes, for example, offers a full range of courses (http://uksa.org/leisure-courses/); as does the Medina Valley Centre in the sheltered tidal estuary near to Newport (http://www.medinavalleycentre.org.uk/isle-of-wight-sailing.php).

For a full round-up of all sailing opportunities on the Island, visit http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/things-to-do/sailing-and-charters-boat-trips.


For further information, please contact:
Sue Emmerson, Visit Isle of Wight Press Officer
Tel: 07766 705672 E-mail: sue@visitwight.co.uk


The Education market is the target of a new campaign to be rolled out by Visit Isle of Wight (VIOW) in a bid to attract new visitors and raise the profile of the Island.

The campaign activity spanning print and online media, aims to promote the Island as a study destination worldwide, inspiring schools and those involved in all aspects of education to book a visit to the Island for day trips or longer stays.

The campaign will be supported by a new 40-page printed guide, packed with ideas and tour options for schools.    Entitled “We know Education”, the brochure capitalises on the Island’s strengths across all curriculum areas, including the themes for History, Geography, Art and design and Physical Education.  A downloadable app version of the brochure will also be available.

Working with a range of specialist operators, including the UKSA, English Heritage and Education Destination, VIOW will host familiarisation trips for teachers who will be invited to explore the UK’s ‘biggest classroom’ and find out what makes the Island such an outstanding place for their subject and their students.

“This is the first time we have specifically gone out to target the education market,” said David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight.  “We are extremely fortunate to have such a rich variety of exciting learning experiences and we believe this campaign is a great opportunity for the Island to increase its share of this market.”

Jonathan Green, marketing director for Red Funnel Ferries commented “With journey times of just 2½ hours from London and ferry-inclusive, curriculum based itineraries available from just £11pp, the Isle of Wight represents great value for money for school trips.

Jon Carter, Group General Manager, Education Destination, added “Having done extensive research with teachers, we know the key to this market is offering curriculum focussed teaching resources. Education Destination is working with all the leading venues and transport providers to ensure the Isle of Wight offers the best teaching materials of any destination in the world.”

Mark Persad, Head of Marketing for Wightlink Ferries said “With up to 150 sailings per day, a choice of three routes, crossings to the Island in just over 20 minutes and a choice of world class attractions nearby, school trips to the Isle of Wight have never been easier and are available from just £6.40 per child.”

Part of the new marketing campaign will involve creating an education section on the visitisleofwight website with up-to-date information on businesses that provide educational things to do and accommodation for educational parties. By showcasing the many businesses providing learning experiences it will help organisers to plan their trips effectively and efficiently.

Island businesses that provide learning experiences and would like to be included in the campaign should e-mail their details to jill@visitwight.org


For further information, please contact: Sue Emmerson, Press Officer, Tel: 01983 201048, 07766 705672, E-mail: sue@visitwight.org

Attached image shows (LtoR): Sarah Dawson, Sales Development Manager, Red Funnel, Jon Carter, Group General Manager, Education Destination and David Thornton, CEO, Visit Isle of Wight at the launch of VIOW’s new “We know Education” brochure.   The launch took place at the Education Show held on 19/20 March at the NEC Birmingham. http://www.education-show.com/