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BY THE DART TALKS TO ROB GILES, DART HARBOURMASTER Planning for the big ones


THE natural beauty of Dartmouth’s harbour already acts as a magnet to some of the world’s most luxurious super yachts and cruise liners but the port’s harbour master wants to attract even more. In the past the River Dart has hosted The World, the lavish cruise ship, home to an exclusive community who enjoy an infinite voyage around the globe, plus numerous deluxe super yachts including Eos, the biggest private sailing yacht on the planet. Many cruise liners such as Le Diamant, Swan


Hellenic, Sea Cloud and the Hebridean Princess return time after time. So why do they come here, to this little town tucked away in a corner of South West England? Dart harbourmaster Rob Giles says it’s a no-brainer.


‘They


come for the simple visual perspective of entering this beautiful and magnificent port,’ he said. ‘The American cruise ships particularly like the history


of Dartmouth and the surrounding area, then there are the shops and the unique experience of taking a river trip to Greenway or Totnes and the significant attractions of Sharpham Vineyard and even Brixham as a fishing port. All of that is of interest to cruise liner passengers.


‘The super yachts like the fact they can moor in the middle of the river where they can be seen, with their own moat around them. They don’t like being stuck in the middle of a container port. They like the service we give them but they also like the location. There’s a certain kudos that Dartmouth has that other places don’t.


of Destination South West, a group of local ports who club together to market the South West to cruise liners at trade shows. On top of that, the authority is planning its own marketing strategy to entice cruise ships to the river. Rob said: ‘We are in amongst it but I think we can do better to promote the port. We are in the process of putting together our own marketing package to extol the virtues of coming to this part of the world as opposed to other places. We will spend a small amount of money in producing a piece of public material for the cruise liner trade. It will be quite a focused marketing piece. ‘We are also looking to get a little bit more into the super yacht market. We had a couple of great visits


It’s a pretty special place with its historic interest,


and there’s enough going on in the town.’ Dart Harbour and Navigation Authority is a member


Photograph Nick Shepherd - www.nickshepherd.com 115


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