20/06/2019

Coleraine Watersports Centre Anticipates Record Year

Northern Ireland's most popular watersports destination is celebrating the milestone of 130,000 customers and is on track for reaching record footfall this year.

The Edge Watersports at The Crannagh Activity Centre, Coleraine, was established 23 years ago by Rob Skelly, a British Waterski and Wakeboard (BWSF) senior instructor, and his wife Joan.

The longest established waterpark in Northern Ireland, its popularity is growing significantly year on year. In 2017 it welcomed over 18,000 customers, increasing to 22,000 last year. The anticipated footfall for the 2019 season between May and September is over 24,000. 

Originally established at Drumaheglis Marina, Ballymoney, The Edge Watersports moved to The Crannagh Marina four years ago and is now idyllically located on the banks of the Lower Bann between Coleraine and Portstewart.

A range of activities are on offer from waterskiing, wakeboarding and banana boating to tube rides, kayaking and stand up paddleboarding. It was awarded the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for the past three years and 'Tourism Attraction of the Year' for the Causeway Coast and Glens area in the local business awards.

Discussing the business' appeal, Rob Skelly said: "We are constantly innovating and investing in the facilities at The Edge Watersports to retain our position as the go-to venue for water sports enthusiasts who want to excel.

"Last year we invested over £25,000 to reconfigure the existing layout, increasing the waterpark size by 40% to 2,500 square metres with a potential capacity of 120 visitors. However, we consistently strive to create the ultimate quality customer experience and therefore restrict our numbers to 80 at any one time."

Mr Skelly continued: "We carefully select the various modules for the waterpark to ensure they are great fun, but more importantly, safe. A team of forty highly experienced and qualified staff supervise the activities which are suitable for anyone from the age of five.
News Image
"Unlike some other waterparks, all of our lifeguards are RLSS Open Water qualified. We also have twelve qualified boat drivers and waterski/wakeboard coaches. The two maxims for our business are safety and customer service.

"We are also committed to supporting individuals of all abilities to embrace water-based activities. The Edge was the first watersports centre in Northern Ireland to offer waterskiing for the disabled and we now have the equipment to teach wheelchair users, the visually impaired and amputees. So, whatever your ability, there are no barriers to enjoying this action-packed sport."

Since it was established, The Edge Watersports has been at the forefront of developments in watersports, in particular wakeboarding, in Northern Ireland. It was the first centre to teach the sport, hosting Ireland's first ever wakeboard competition in 1997. Since then the company has hosted five national championships, trained twelve national champions, and in 2016 hosted the first ever European Wakeboard Championships to be held in Ireland.

Welcoming the announcement from The Edge Watersports, Seamus Carey, owner of Crannagh Marina Complex, said: "This is a really exciting time for us. We are recording record numbers of visitors and are thrilled to see the success of The Edge Watersports at The Crannagh Activity Centre. We will also be announcing a number of exciting new developments at The Crannagh in the near future and this will undoubtedly further increase the profile of this wonderful destination.

"The Lower Bann has been extremely underused as a recreation and tourism resource and we aim, with the help of various partners, to change this and make it a prime destination where people can come and spend a number of days packed full of fun activities. Indeed, we have recently added some luxury on site accommodation, which can be booked directly via our new website. The entire Crannagh Marina Complex is becoming a major hub for tourists and locals alike. There is something for everyone, no matter what your age, ability or interests."

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

10 March 2020
Coronavirus Closes Schools & Belfast Call Centre
The coronavirus outbreak has caused the temporary closure of two schools and a Halifax call centre. The business in the Belfast Gasworks area closed for deep cleaning today, Tuesday 10 March, after a colleague was diagnosed with Covid-19. It's understood employees have been told not to attend work at the south Belfast site.
10 March 2020
Probe Over Armed Robbery In Belfast City Centre
Police are investigating a suspected armed robbery of a cash-in-transit van in Belfast City Centre. The scene in Academy Street and Exchange Street was held at around 7.50am this morning, Tuesday 10 March, following the alleged incident. No further details have emerged as yet.
16 March 2020
Covid-19: Seven Further Cases Confirmed
Seven further cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in Northern Ireland, bringing totals to 52. It comes amid continued controversy over whether schools should follow suit with the Republic of Ireland and close their doors. Several local schools have taken the option to close along with bars and restaurants across the region.
12 March 2020
Coronavirus: BCC To Hold Special Meeting
Belfast City councillors are to convene in a special meeting to assess the growing threat of coronavirus. It comes after it emerged that protection measures are to be stepped up in the Republic of Ireland, with all schools, colleges and childcare facilities to close. A total of 20 cases of the virus have been confirmed in Northern Ireland.
12 March 2020
Budget: Extra £210m For NI Public Services
Business and political leaders have been giving their reactions to the Budget, with an extra £210 million allocated for public services in Northern Ireland. The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, yesterday pledged a £12 billion package of measures aimed at tackling the spread of coronavirus across the UK.