The Southend Marine Activities Centre stands in a privileged beach side position on Southend's Eastern Esplanade and provides an excellent base from which to enjoy a wide variety of adventurous activities afloat and ashore. The Centre has an excellent reputation for the quality of its courses, built up during the last twenty five years as a provider of nationally recognised watersports courses.
Our programme includes introductory level courses in Sailing, Canoeing, Windsurfing, Powerboat driving and Personal Watercraft (Jetski) riding. For those with previous experience, we offer a full range of improver training, through formal courses, informal practice sessions with advice and assistance at hand, or membership of our watersports club.
Our watersports club, launched in 1997, provides an opportunity for regular participation in watersports without the need to buy a boat or expensive equipment.
The centre also offers a wide range of beach based activities and orienteering at a variety of locations. If you would like to know more about these activities, please give us a call.
The centre would like to cater for everyone regardless of age, gender or ability. However, our facilities and courses are unsuitable for very young children and we have been forced to set our lower age limit at nine years of age. Therefore, to be booked onto a course you must be nine years of age or over on the first day of your chosen course.
We are often asked about our upper age limit, but the simple answer is that we don't have one. Providing that you are in good health we can't see any reason why you shouldn't have a go if you want to.
We don't see limited mobility, sight or hearing as a barrier to participation. The Centre has full toilet and shower facilities and a variety of craft specifically designed or adapted for those with limited mobility.
If you have limited mobility, partial sight or poor hearing but would like to come on a course please write or give us a call and we will do our very best to get you afloat.
As you will see on this website, the Centre offers a wide range of courses which probably cost less than you thought. We are keen to react to local needs for watersports training and work together with local watersports clubs, the R.N.L.I. and H.M. Coastguard to ensure that essential safety training is available.
On a less serious note, the Centre can be booked for children's parties. You'll find that our prices are very competitive and that the kids love doing something a little different on their special day. Go on, splash out and have that party with a difference!
We have also just introduced Course Vouchers which can be used to provide a special surprise present for a friend or loved one.
The Centre provides all of the specialist equipment needed on your course including the boats, canoes and windsurfers, together with anchors, paddles, and other essential safety equipment such as buoyancy aids.
Our courses are staffed by well qualified, experienced instructors who teach according to methods laid down by the RYA and BCU.
Your course fee also includes the cost of a logbook and certificate, where this is applicable. You need only bring the items listed below.
All participants in watersports need to bring suitable clothing to wear afloat, plus a towel and a full set of dry clothing. A swimsuit might be useful to wear under a wetsuit (essential for windsurfers).
For most activities, shorts and a light shirt will be suitable on the warmest summer's days but long trousers and layers of warm clothing are essential most of the time. Old trainers or plimsolls are ideal footwear to use afloat.
Sunburn can be a real problem afloat and we would urge you to bring a high factor sunscreen and to use it. A sunhat and sunglasses may also be helpful in this regard.
The café at the end of our building does supply hot and cold food but long delays may be experienced in peak season so we recommend that you bring a packed lunch if your course lasts all day.
Because safety is of paramount importance, all of our activities operate according to a strict set of safety guidelines. These are contained in our "Instructor Manual", a copy of which is available for you to read (in the main classroom). However, for your convenience we have summarised some of the main safety rules below:
The centre is licensed to provide Kayaking, Canoeing, Sailing and Windsurfing activities, under the Adventure Activities Licensing Regulations 1996. Our other activities do not come within the scope of the regulations, but adhere to the same rigorous safety standards.
Please address enquiries about the licence to the Adventure Activities Licensing Authority on Cardiff (029) 2075 5715. Please do not use this number for other enquiries.