Norfolk boat industry suppliers are feeling optimistic at the London Boat Show

Boat industry suppliers are seeing buoyant business as people refit their boats.

While the boat builders and agents were out in force at the London Boat Show, industry suppliers from the region also used the flagship marine event to meet customers and clients.

Andrew Peachment, technical director of Brundall based engine company AR Peachment acknowledged there had been tough times when the recession hit a few years ago but things has picked up at the end of last year.

He said: 'Two years ago it was very slow, but in the last two quarters there has been a noticeable increase. This year is looking the same. We have got good forward orders.'

He said that the firms customers were professional boat builders as well as private boat builders.


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He said: 'Business is not what it was four or five years ago. It doesn't matter what industry you are in.'

He said that they had seen firms drop away when the recession first hit, but it had not been so bad in the last couple of years.

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'We are very optimistic for this year,' he added.

Chris Jeckell, managing director of Jeckells the Sailmakers, which is celebrating its 180th birthday this year, said the boat show was used by a class of people who did not want to buy over the internet.

He said they had been really busy. We cannot remember being as busy in January,' he said.

'People have got boats and if they have got sailing boats and if their sails are worn out they buy sails. If you need to buy some sails you are doing it for a long time.'

Andrew Jeckells, of Jeckells and Sons, which designs and manufacturers upholstery and covers, is from the same family as Jeckells the Sailmakers, but a different business.

He said: 'We are finding more and more people are turning to doing up their boats.

'They are thinking about selling and not getting the money they would like.

'New boats are so much money people are improving what they have. We know we are different. We seem to be pretty busy. Our staff levels are not reduced too much.'

A video about the boat show's attractions and what our local firms have on view appears on the website of the EDP's sister boating magazine, Anglia Afloat.

Visit the website at www.angliaafloat.co.uk to view it.

The March issue of the magazine will carry more reports from the show. It will be on sale from newsagents, supermarkets and chandleries or you can order single copies delivered to your door via www.buyamag.co.uk/angliaafloat. Or annual subscriptions for �15 are available by calling 0844 848 0846 or through the website at www.subscriptionsave.co.uk/angliaafloat.

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