Issued: 27th October 2010
by: Peta Stuart-Hunt, CHC Communications Officer  T: +44 (0) 1590 679 621 | M: +44 (0) 7711 477 707


Cowes Harbour Commission (CHC) is delighted that full planning consent has been granted by the Isle of Wight Council for the next phase of the Cowes Outer Harbour Project – the East Cowes marina development on the Isle of Wight.

This consent follows the recent news that Sutton Harbour Holdings PLC has been announced by SEEDA as the preferred developer and operator for the new Outer Harbour development at East Cowes.

The site model courtesy of SEEDA

The planning consent covers construction of a marina comprising 300 permanent berths with dedicated visitor/event berthing and associated facilities including a marina building, public landing facility and temporary car parking facilities.

Outline planning permission has also been granted for further development, comprising the permanent marina car park, a 60-bed hotel, 12 town houses and 324 sq m of commercial floorspace.

The water-based elements of the Outer Harbour Project, comprising the outer breakwater and Eastern channel have already been granted the go ahead by the Marine Maritime Organisation (MMO).

Cowes Harbour Commissioners believe this strategic development is vital to the long-term prosperity of the Harbour and local economy. It will finally deliver a long held objective of making Cowes a  “truly sheltered harbour”, thereby maximising its potential and useability.

This development is also a key part of the regeneration of East Cowes, and will provide the opportunity to improve the links between East and West Cowes, open up of the waterfront to enhance East Cowes’ status as a gateway and boost tourism in the area.

SEEDA has also expressed its delight about the Isle of Wight Planning Committee decision, Paul Flatt, Senior Development Manager commented that, “The development will mark an important step in the transformation of East Cowes and support the growth of the local economy.”  SEEDA will now work with CHC and the Crown Estate on finalising the agreements and they expect work on the scheme to commence in Spring 2011.

The Chief Executive of CHC and Cowes Harbour Master, Captain Stuart McIntosh, said, “This decision and planning consent is great news and a major step towards delivering the Outer Harbour Plan that will finally make Cowes a truly sheltered harbour, improving safety. It is also a significant step towards securing the long term future prosperity of the harbour and the local economy.”


Editor’s notes:

Cowes Harbour Commission –

·      Cowes is a Trust Port constituted by Act of Parliament in 1897 and has a Board of Commissioners with day-to-day operation delegated to the Harbour Master/Chief Executive to manage the harbour.

·      Cowes Harbour Commission is the statutory harbour authority for Cowes Harbour. The Commission also provides services and moorings for harbour users on a competitive and commercial basis.

·      In 2001, CHC carried out significant changes as recommended by the Government in its Trust Ports Review. The aim of the new standard is to ensure that Trust Ports perform a valuable role in support of the local, regional and national economy and provide a benchmark for good governance, accountability, and openness.

·      The Commission is a self-financing, not for profit organisation that aims to make an operating surplus to reinvest into the continuing development of the harbour and associated services. There are no shareholders or owners and all operating surplus is re-invested back into the harbour for the benefit of the harbour users and stakeholders.

·      The Commission operates a robust financial management system to provide transparency and accountability in respect of the Commission’s dual functions as the statutory harbour authority and also a service provider. All income and expenditure is budgeted and accounted in five separate ring fenced cost centres which facilitates accurate reporting.


SEEDA is the Government funded agency responsible for the economic and social development of the South East of England – the driving force of the UK’s economy. Our aim is to create a prosperous, dynamic and inspirational region by helping businesses compete more effectively, training a highly skilled workforce, supporting and enabling our communities while safeguarding our natural resources and cherishing our rich cultural heritage.

Media Enquiries
Peta Stuart-Hunt
Communications Officer
Cowes Harbour Commission

T: +44 (0) 1590 679 621 | M +44 (0) 7711 477 707




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