Southampton International Boat Show cancelled on eve of opening

The UK's Southampton International Boat Show 2020 (BOATS2020) was cancelled the day before the event was due to begin. The show, BOATS2020, had been set to run 11-20 September. Organisers British Marine said they received the news that the city council had cancelled the event, at 6:34pm on Thursday 10 September.

British Marine said there had previously been close collaboration with Southampton City Council to ensure the event complied with Covid requirements. The organisers are offering all BOATS2020 ticket holders a credit against their ticket purchase for Southampton International Boat Show 2021.

Lesley Robinson, CEO of British Marine, said: “We are desperately disappointed that BOATS2020 will no longer be taking place, especially receiving the news at the eleventh hour before opening. A tremendous amount of work had been put in.

“British Marine has remained committed to staging this not-for-profit boat show to support the leisure marine industry and our host city of Southampton, and I am deeply saddened that it will now no longer be taking place. Alongside our exhibitors, we were ready to open a show that exceeded all safety requirements.

“We are truly perplexed as to why we were unable to run the show at least until Monday, in line with the government restrictions imposed. The global pandemic and unprecedented times mean that the latest circumstances are beyond our control. Public health and safety come first and naturally, as the show organiser, British Marine must comply with all guidance.”