It has been a long time coming – the site having been under consideration since the 1970s – but on Friday, May 27, the developer who has finally brought it to life, Geomac Limited, will be welcoming dignitaries and boaters to the opening of the new 250-berth Shakespeare Marina on the River Avon.
And guest of honour is Timothy West, the renowned actor, great canal boat enthusiast and patron of the Avon Navigation Trust.
He has spent three seasons with the Royal Shakespeare Company and has filmed ten series of Channel 4’s Great Canal Journeys with his wife Prunella Scales.
Celebrations will begin with him boarding Lily, an Edwardian river launch, in Stratford and sailing down the Avon to the marina.
As Lily sails under the marina’s towpath bridge, he will cut a ribbon to mark the opening.
On the dock beside the marina buildings, refreshments will be served to guests, celebratory speeches will be given and there will be music from traditional Dixieland jazz band, Twenties Again.
Neil Warren, of Geomac Limited, says: “We are delighted to be welcoming Timothy West together with local dignitaries, boating enthusiasts and the local community to the opening of Shakespeare Marina.
“Marinas are about people, not just boats and we are proud to have worked alongside Land & Water Services and the Avon Navigation Trust to create a first-class, exclusive, leisure boat marina that provides customers the chance to moor their boats in a prestigious location and popular tourist destination.”
Shakespeare Marina is less than a ten-minute walk to the centre of Stratford and provides access to the Avon Ring and the national canal network.
The marina is designed to look like a natural water body and is complemented by floating jetties. with non-slip decking. The jetties will rise with any change in water levels.
It has been designed and built using sustainable solutions, such as the re-use of spoil material and recycled steel piles to minimise waste and so reducing its carbon footprint.
For more details, go to: www.shakespearemarina.com/