Excitement builds as Gosport Marine Festival set to return in September
WINDSURFING, kayaking and other watersports will all take centre stage as a popular festival returns later this year.
Gosport Marine Festival is making a comeback on Saturday, September 4, giving families the chance to explore what the town has to offer in terms of marine leisure – all free of charge.
The event was last held in 2019, seeing thousands of people flock to Gosport’s waterfront to try their hand at something new.
It is hoped that this year’s festival will be the best yet, with plenty to do both on the water and on dry land.
Festival chairman, Barry Easton-Corke, said: ‘Now in its fifth iteration, the festival is very popular, with nearly 5,000 people attending in previous years.
‘It is a great family event, especially for young people who can come along and enjoy themselves.
‘If you don’t fancy going afloat, you can watch or enjoy the exhibitions and entertainment ashore.’
Organised by Portsmouth Habrour Marine, the event is supported by organisations and businesses from across Gosport, including the borough council, British Marine and Gosport Sea Cadets.
In Haslar Marina, dinghy sailing, kayaking and rowing will be available for people over the age of 12.
Meanwhile at Cockle Pond, next to Lakeside Cafe, youngsters between six and 11 years old can try their hands at kayaking, windsurfing nad paddleboarding.
Mr Eastone-Corke added: ‘Living in an area surrounded by water, with 24 miles of coastline on three sides, it’s important that every youngster has the opportunity to enjoy the water while, at the same time, having knowledge of water safety.
‘The festival gives everyone a chance to have fun on the water or try a new sport in a fun, friendly and safe environment.
‘This event would not be possible without the support of our many volunteers who donate their time and the generosity of local charities, businesses and our sponsors.’
For those who prefer to keep their feet dry, there will be live entertainment all day from local performers, model yacht building for children, food and drink sold by Hampshire producers and an inspiration zone, which will offer careers advice to those interested in working for the marine industry.
Most activities will require pre-booking, which opens in July.