James Cracknell to open 2019’s Southampton International Boat Show, powered by Borrow A Boat

British rowing champion, double Olympic gold medallist and new star of Strictly Come Dancing,James Cracknell OBE, will co-headline Britain’s biggest festival of boating this year.

He will be joined by TV personality and fitness entrepreneur,Lucy Mecklenburgh, for the Official Show Opening this Friday (13 September) at 11am. Together they will help kick off 10 days of incredible fun at one of the world’s premier nautical events.


Celebrating the lifestyle, fun and excitement that being on the water has to offer, this year’s event is set to welcome a line-up of thrilling entertainment alongside family-friendly attractions. Europe’s largest purpose-built marina will feature hundreds of stunning boats for visitors to hop on and off, completing the experience.

James Cracknell comments: “I’m delighted to be opening the 51st Southampton International Boat Show, powered by Borrow A Boat. I’ve spent most of my life on the water, both competitively and for fun. From kayaking on the river and making rafts with mates to holiday inflatables and surfboards in the sea, the water is an amazing place to be.

“The Boat Show aims to get thousands of people out on the water during the 10 days of the event. There are loads of brilliant activities which are completely free of charge, offering really easy access for anyone to enjoy the open water.”

Lesley Robinson, British Marine CEO, adds: “We’re delighted to welcome James Cracknell OBE and Lucy Mecklenburgh to the Show this year. Attracting thousands of watersports enthusiasts, whether beginners or seasoned professionals, this year’s Show offers a fantastic day out for friends and family. There are a host of new features on offer for 2019, setting this global-leading event on course for another fantastic year.”

Also joining the line-up of famous faces is professional surfer and Love Island 2019 star, Lucie Donlan, who will be taking to the water this Saturday (14 September) to revel in the fantastic on-water experiences on offer at the Show.

There will also be a host of sailing personalities appearing across the 10 days sharing their personal experiences of life on the water. This includes Dee Caffari MBE, Helena Lucas MBE, Pip Hare, Conrad Humphreys, Mike Golding and Conrad Manning, as well as global social media influencers, Sailing Uma and SV Delos.

While on the Show’s new Foredeck Stage, an array of legendary boating experts will be joining visitors to share skilful insights and savvy top tips. This includes Tom Cunliffe, Stokey Woodall, Sam Llewellyn, Rod Heikell and Max Liberson, plus many more.

It’s expected that more than 15,000 people will take to the water across the full 10 days of the Show, with numerous free activities to enjoy, including paddleboarding, dinghy sailing and mini cruises. Additional features include live music and interactive attractions.

The Show will run from Friday 13 September to Sunday 22 September 2019. Tickets are available to purchase from the Show website:southamptonboatshow.com