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End of Year Round Up & New News for 2024!

Updated: May 2

2023 saw a whole host of positive events & some new learnings for us all. Below we round up some of the key moments of 2023 and what to expect as we roll into our 2024 season!


The feedback from our December 2023 survey, although contained some heart warming praise, also highlighted a number of areas which we have since, and continue to improve on. These include:

  • Better security especially at night

  • Better cleaning of the w.c & shower facilities

  • Improvement to pontoons

  • Car parking & PCN issues

  • Bar & restaurant standards

  • Customer service & management communications

  • Limited service days

  • Improvements to general look & feel of building

  • Convenience store on site

  • Better WiFi


Rather than operating between 9am - 5pm (closed at weekends), we extended our operational hours to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This decision was taken in order to ensure that we could extend the service days to 7 days a week, offer better security especially at night and implement an hourly w.c/shower cleaning check. I hope you have all seen & felt the benefit of having our night staff Lyndon & Mark conducting their evening grounds/pontoon patrols and have seen a significant improvement in the quality and cleanliness of the showers & w.c's.



Frustration surrounding the car park management company and specifically, the issuing of PCN's has been discussed with Smart Parking. We have improved our process for handling any unfair PCNs so that they are dealt with swiftly. We are also in discussions with Smart Parking to extend the wait time from 10 minutes to 3 hours which should, alleviate some of the loading issues experienced to date.


Feedback ideas for the general improvement of the aesthetics of the main marina building have also been taken into account, with new carpeting throughout, fresh professional paint work, new art work, improved notice boards and the addition ceiling speakers playing ambient music throughout.


Another idea from a berth holder which we thought was a fantastic one was the introduction of an on-site convenience store. Our lovely Elaine was keen to open a box-shop style store which, with the office relocation freeing up the large space at the front of the foyer, meant there was a space ready for her to takeover. We are delighted to have Elaine and her 'Quayosk' join our marina family and hope you all support her as she embarks on this exciting new venture!


Customer service and management communications was picked up also, with one berth holder noting

"there is still some way to go in terms of making customers feel valued. To challenge or disagree with a management view is met with the threat of eviction and no attempt is made to engage or understand...".

Sadly, although hard to read, I could understand the root of this problem and I do hope that, although still some way to go, the introduction of 'The Collaborative' liveaboard committee meetings, regular feedback opportunities and my regular presence on-site has helped towards easing this feeling. Personally, I absolutely welcome any feedback, good or bad. It is my mission to create an environment here where all of our customers feel welcomed, valued and heard. One recent example of collaboration with berth holder feedback was over the decision to remove vans from the inner car park. One berth holder came to see me and suggested that actually, it might work better if vans were allowed to use the empty RV spaces between 8am - 8pm if they were concerned for security reasons. The idea was rolled out almost immediately and to date, is working well.

I am working with a number of berth holders to create a new berth holder committee which will welcome representatives from the many and various customer groups we have at the marina. More news on this in due course... In the mean time, please do feel free to reach out to me personally with any feedback or improvement initiatives you would like to see implemented at any time.




The deteriorating standards of the bar & restaurant was highlighted during the feedback survey, our own site inspections, customer reviews and formally via the HSE inspection. This, along with a multitude of other issues, resulted in the eviction of the existing operator and the closure of the bar & restaurant whilst we sought an alternative operator to take over. It has been an incredibly challenging period to manage the transfer, and whilst we have desperately wanted to update you all on the news of the new operator, in an attempt not to add fuel to the fire, we decided for the safety of the marina staff and the new operator, it was best to remain quiet for now.

However, I am pleased to announce that the new bar & kitchen, 'The Anchor' will be opening on the 1st May with a soft launch for berth holders only shortly beforehand. More details below.


Another new addition to the marina family is of course, our RYA training school 'Harbourside Sea School' who occupy the old Brunswick Suite on the upper level of the marina building. The Sea School has taken off brilliantly and enables all berth holders, staff and outside customers to take advantage of the fantastic new facility.

Training was another focus for us for our team, and all of the staff underwent retraining for H&S and VHF where required. We also introduced a new three week onboarding training matrix for all new staff members which will be rolled out across the bar & restaurant staff too, to encourage better synergy going forwards. I was of course delighted to have completed the intensive 8 day Advanced Marina Manager course hosted by British Marine, TYHA & GMI in Abu Dhabi. The experience allowed for me to meet and discuss ideas/issues with the likes of platinum anchor marina's globally - ideas and improvement techniques I endeavour to thread into Liverpool Marina in 2024.



Another key project for 2023 is the dredging of Brunswick dock. The dredging programme began mid March and is now complete. Conducted by Humber Work Boats, the programme has improved the water depth in Brunswick from 2m to 4m across the board. This programme has cost just short of £500,000 in total and sadly has taken stripped the financial allowance away from other initiatives we had hoped to reinvest in such as the WiFi upgrade and bollard upgrade to cloud/app based servers. However, as the scale of the project was enforced upon us, we had very little choice and now that it has completed, we look forward to planning the wifi and bollard upgrades at a later date.


A highlight for us was our partnership with Marine Hygiene, offering bespoke eco-friendly cleaning boxes complete with reusable spray bottles and cleaning sachets & pods which will last up to year. The boxes retail in the Quayosk for £19.99, but, we will be giving one box away to the first 50 customers who come to claim one! Pop by the office and collect yours to try for free today!


The icing on the cake was our Gold Anchor Accreditation. This award has been three years in the making and a grueling process of health & safety and policy introductions and reviews, staff training and facility and service improvements. A TYHA examiner reviewed our back of house systems and processes, our health & safety audits and checklists and conducted several 'mystery shops' before awarding us with a fantastic 4 Gold Anchor accreditation!

When I took over the marina operation in 2020, achieving a gold anchor accreditation seemed impossible. It is thanks to the many hard working team mates, and your valued feedback which has steered us in the right direction to achieving such a prestigious award. Thank you to all of you who took the time to leave your feedback and to the marina team for making the impossible, possible!




New News for 2024


The Anchor - Bar . Kitchen . Terrace

It is with great pleasure and excitement I announce the reopening of the bar & restaurant operation. 'The Anchor Bar Kitchen & Terrace' is set to reopen on the 1st of May. The business is owned by Diane Maddock and chef Kiaron. Diane has ran our functions for over 10 years and is well versed with our dynamic clientelle. She will be joined by Kiaron as Head Chef joining as partner who will head up the back of house operation.

Diane and Kiaron would like to invite you all for a taster session, details of which to follow.







Harbourside Hot Desks

Our upstairs crows nest has been converted into a hot-desk for those berth holders and residents of adjacent apartments who work from home. The space will allow 12 remote working spaces complete with free tea & coffee station, water and wifi. Carpets are being fitted in the next few weeks and then we will be live. Access to this space will be on subscription only for £16.99 per month which can be booked online.


Events

We're excited to partner with Diane running the Anchor after working with us for our functions for over 10 years. Marina sponsored quiz night, Summer social, marine industry speakers and LYC partnership events will soon be published online.


Pontoon Repairs

The pontoons are ongoing repairs such as replanking and retightening the flashings but we also will be seeing new life rings and holders, new ladders and lighting. We are embarking on a new block and chain renewal programme which you will see enforced over the coming year.


There is a magazine worth of news to share, but I will do so via a news letter shortly and perhaps, our long overdue meeting finally!


If you have any questions or concerns in the meantime, please email me personally.


Kind regards

Chloe










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