Cruise ship company comes back for more at Portsmouth International Port

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Minerva  Spinnaker Tower

All Leisure Holidays (ALH), the British cruise ship operator, has just signed a three-year agreement with Portsmouth International Port that will extend a relationship that started in 2010 to at least 2018.

The group owns three well-known companies; Swan Hellenic, Voyages of Discovery and Hebridean Island Cruises. During the last five years ships from each company have visited Portsmouth International Port, a decision based on excellent transport connections, location and investment in new facilities.

The new three-year agreement with ALH starts in January 2016 and is a vote of confidence in the high levels of service offered at Portsmouth International Port. The cruise team at Portsmouth is renowned for offering a bespoke and flexible service to a wide range of visiting cruise vessels, with an ever-growing reputation for handling smaller luxury ships.

For the last five years Swan Hellenic’s Minerva has been based at Portsmouth International Port for cruises in Northern Europe, the Baltic and Scandinavia. That relationship will continue for at least another three years, with Minerva starting Portsmouth International Port’s 2016 cruise season on April 15th.

The first cruise of next year from the famous Waterfront City will see passengers taken on a two-week holiday to explore three fascinating French rivers – the Loire, the Seine and the Garonne. Throughout the summer Minerva offers a varied and distinctive series of nine cruises from Portsmouth International Port, including visits to the glorious gardens of Europe, destinations in the Baltic, an Icelandic quest, the Norwegian fjords, the Scottish Highlands and Islands, and a chance to discover the treasures of Portugal and Spain.

With a maximum of 350 passengers, Minerva offers a refined experience for her guests, the cruise ship invoking a feeling of a stylish country house hotel.

Rupert Taylor, Harbour Master at Portsmouth International Port, is responsible for the busy cruise schedule. Reflecting on the new agreement, Rupert said “I’m delighted that ALH has extended its relationship with Portsmouth International Port for another three years. The first agreement started in 2011, the same year we opened our modern cruise terminal and a key reason they chose to base ships with us for the summer season. Since then we have helped ALH send thousands of passengers off on holidays of a lifetime from Portsmouth International Port and look forward to watching that number grow over the coming years.”

Stuart Horne, All Leisure Holidays’ Director of Fleet Operations, said, “Our cruise brands have always had fantastic service from Portsmouth International Port and we are looking forward to continuing this relationship for the foreseeable future. Portsmouth is a fantastic base from which we will be offering 11 cruise departures with Voyager and Minerva during 2016 to some incredible destinations such as Iceland, the White Sea and the Gulf of Bothnia.”

For further information please contact Emma Gaisford/Julie Blackwell on +44 (0)1256 631696 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Anita Harris becomes Kings Theatre Portsmouth’s Patron

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DSC01027 webAs Cinderella’s Fairy Godmother tells us, ‘all dreams can come true’ and at the end of a spectacular pantomime season at the Kings Theatre in Portsmouth, actress and singer, Anita Harris who played Cinderella’s wicked stepmother, became the theatre’s newest patron.

Chairman of the Trust, Ron Hasker, took the opportunity to join the cast at the finale to tell a packed theatre audience that he was inviting Anita to become a patron in recognition of the long association with the Kings throughout her career.

Joined on stage by her husband Mike Margolis and holding back the tears, Anita said she was honoured to be invited and after such a wonderful pantomime season, looked forward to being involved with the theatre’s future.

Ron Hasker added, ‘We are so pleased that Anita was able to accept our invitation to become a patron. She is a delightful lady and we have really enjoyed welcoming her back on stage here at the Kings Theatre.’

Anita now joins the Right Worshipful Lord Mayor of Portsmouth, together with Ms Dillie Keane, Ms Lisa Riley and Mr Hugh Dennis as patrons of the Kings Theatre.


Shaping Portsmouth Conference 2015

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A huge thank you to everyone who came to the Shaping Portsmouth conference on Friday 20th November. Please see below for a message from Cheryl Buggy.

When we began to consider speakers for this year’s theme of Made [it] In Portsmouth, we quickly realised we were spoilt for choice. As soon as you begin to seek out success stories, you cannot help but notice the breadth and depth of talent, innovation and creativity that Portsmouth enjoys. And of course the more you look the more you find!

So we think we created a wide ranging programme of speakers, giving an insight into just some of the rich seams of talented organisations that exist in the city, many of whom also have a global presence.

It was also an opportunity to celebrate success, with each workstream selecting two business they wanted to shine the spotlight on. You can see the winners below.

Cheryl Buggy
Project Director

Running order for the day


 - Entry for Stallholders.

08:00 - 09:00

 - Registration - Tea and coffee, exhibition and networking time.

09:00 - 09:05

 - Opening - Walter Cha, Chair of Shaping Portsmouth.

09:05 - 09:20

 - Caroline Sharman, Artistic Director & CEO of the New Theatre Royal.

09:20 - 09:35

 - Mr Jim Khan, an expert in robotic surgery at QA Hospital.

09:35 - 09:50

 - Jason Bentley, Founder and Managing Director of The Recycled Assets Company.

09:50 - 10:05

 - Dr Susie Tomson, Sustainability Manager at Landrover BAR.

10:05 - 10:20

 - Neil Chapman, Managing Director of Hovertravel.

10:20 - 11:00

 - Break - Tea and coffee, exhibition and networking time.

11:00 - 11:15

 - Simon Terry, Innovation & Brand Director of Anglepoise.

11:15 - 11:30

 - Helen Bonser-Wilton, Chief Executive of the Mary Rose Trust 

11:30 - 11:45

 - Professor Catherine Harper, Dean of the Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries at the University of Portsmouth.

11:45 - 12:00

 - Stef Nienaltowski, Chair of the Business & Enterprise workstream, with the annual Shaping Portsmouth update.

12:00 - 12:45

 - Shaping Awards, presented by Cllr Frank Jonas, kindly sponsored by Southern Co-Operatives.

12:45 - 13:00

 - Closing - Cllr Donna Jones, Leader of Portsmouth City Council.

13:00 - 14:30

 - Exhibition and networking  time.


 - Exhibition closes.



Shaping Your Future event 2014

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As part of this years celebration of Global Entrepreneurship Week, the Future Generation's work stream of Shaping held a great event at 1000 Lakeside, called Shaping Your Future.
It focused on targeted secondary school pupils, who staff felt would benefit from being inspired by meeting people during their daily working day.

Organised by Lakeside's Karen Tyrell, a number of businesses based there opened their doors to the 'career detectives' from four of the city's secondary schools.

The event was a huge success, and there are plans to repeat the exercise with the remaining secondary schools in the Spring.

Thank you to Douglas Stafford, HTP, Verizona Law, and Wiggle.


Conference 2013

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The 3rd Shaping conference was a huge success, launching as it did, Portsmouth's week long celebration of Global Entrepreneurship Week
Over 350 delegates heard from a wide range of speakers who all shared a common theme. Its good to business in the city! 

Web Design: morph pr and marketing web design  Graphic Design: Mondas Matt tiny


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