Royal Cork Yacht Club's marina has been awarded five gold anchors by the Yacht Harbour Association and becomes the fourth facility on the coast of Ireland – and the only one on the south coast – to win the distinction.
The 200 berth facility on the Owenabue river in Cork harbor joins Dun Laoghaire marina, Carrickfergus marina and Bangor marina on the east coast with the five anchor flag.
There are over 25 coastal marinas in Ireland and the facilities are key to providing marine tourism revenues from visiting yachts and boats.
The award follows two major reports that recognise that Cork's long and varied coastline is one of its greatest assets. The Mayor of Cork County, Councillor Kevin Murphy, and the County Manager, Martin Riordan, launched two major reports on Cork's coastal areas last Summer; a Marine Leisure Strategy for South Cork, and a Draft Study of Cork Harbour.
The Marine Leisure Infrastructure Strategy for South Cork, 2010-2020 is a document that has paved the way for additional marine leisure facilties to get established in the harbour.
Royal Cork also picked up an International Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA) Clean Marina during a recent inspection.
The awards are a short in the arm for the world's oldest yacht club who debated the future direction of the club at its annual forum last November. The club are preparing for its 400-boat biennial Cork Week 2012 regatta this July.
The Gold Anchor award scheme is a voluntary assessment programme focused on customer service and providing Quality Assured Berthing for any boat owner. The scheme is designed for the marina consumer by The Yacht Harbour Association with contribution from the Roysl Yachting Assocation. With 23 years experience of Gold Anchor standards, the award is a point of reference for all boat owners to make an informed decision on where to berth.