Farewell Baroness Thatcher

Peter Nash is editor of Boating Business

Regardless of how you viewed Mrs Thatcher’s political decisions, I hope most credit her for putting the Great back in Britain.

And to watch her giving a sound handbagging to Neil Kinnock over the despatch box was always a joy.

A divisive politician, certainly. Rarely does one meet a person without strong feelings about her, regardless of whether their politics veer towards the left or right.

While sitting in an M25 traffic jam the other day...
On my way down to the office in Fareham to clear this issue for press, I was reminded of my comments when it was announced the London Boat Show would move from Earls Court to the new Exhibition Centre London (ExCeL) over in Docklands.

I wrote at the time there were two reasons why the move would be problematic.

The first was the M25. I pointed out being an M25 local meant I preferred being on my motor bike if I had to use the road that was soon described as the largest car park in the UK.

I pointed out my journey times from home to ExCeL – 40 miles from where I live – could vary from just over 30 minutes to four hours in a car.

The second reason was ExCeL was a tiny oasis surrounded by East London. There was nothing there. Just ExCeL and East London. I pointed out it would remain like that until London grew out past ExCeL.

Well, London hasn’t grown out to envelop ExCeL in a cuddly Earls Court atmosphere. And I ended up sitting in my car yesterday for six hours, during which I logged 19.7 miles from my home.

So what else cam we not thank ExCeL for? How about the NBS led decision to book the venue for the 2014 London Boat Show?

This show will start on 4 January 2014. It has no title sponsor. It was booked knowing the Outdoors Show, the London Bike Show and the Active Travel Show were all moving to a date later in the year to get better attendance.

It was booked with another fall in visitor attendance: 2011 - 109,778; 2012 – 102,841; 2013 – 93,327.

What on earth makes NBS and the BMF Management Board think 2014 is going to buck this trend?

What’s going to change?

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