Mayflower Marina Announces Retirement of Long Serving Harbour Master

Mayflower Marina’s harbour master, Tony Saunders (pictured), retired this autumn after near 37 years of employment, making him the longest served employee in the company’s history.

Tony’s career started when he joined P&O as a deck cadet, rising to the rank of Chief Officer. He went on to join Mayflower Marina in 1986 as assistant harbour master, where his sea going skills and practical approach to life proved a great fit. In 2001 Tony was appointed harbour master after the retirement of his long-served predecessor.

Charles Bush, managing director said: “One of the great strengths of Mayflower Marina is the long service of its employees and the vast pool of experiences and skills they have amassed over the years. Tony has been at the vanguard of this, and it is a gross understatement to say we will miss him.
“When he told me of his plan to retire, one of his overarching concerns was that he would leave the marina in a better place than he found it – it is safe to say, ‘mission accomplished’! It has been a pleasure working with Tony and I would like to thank him for all that he has done both for me personally and for the marina over his years of service.”

Tony Saunders said: “I have had a very enjoyable 37 seasons at Mayflower Marina, and I have worked with some great staff and met some very interesting characters from the sailing world. It has been a great privilege to be part of the Mayflower family. We have built a good team and I wish them and Mayflower Marina continued success.”

David Crouch, chairman of Sailport PLC which owns and operates the marina, said: “We are indebted to Tony for the service he has provided to us as a company and the great many boat owners who have berthed at Mayflower Marina over the years.

“I recall when Greta Thunberg visited the marina a few years ago. She was scheduled to leave by boat to sail over to the United States, and they were leaving very early in the morning to catch the most favourable tide. It was Tony, in his own time, who was down on the pontoon helping the last-minute preparations for departure. No one asked him to do this, it was a typical selfless act to help deliver the maximum Mayflower experience.”

Mike Knowles, Tony’s long-served deputy harbour master, took over as harbour master this month.

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