Published: October 15, 2010
New tourist hovercraft service launched in Burnham-On-Sea

A new commercial hovercraft service offering trips along Burnham-On-Sea beach to tourists and visitors was launched today (Friday).

Tourism Minister John Penrose was the VIP guest at the launch ceremony on the town's beach.

The Red Devils Parachute Display Team performed a spectacular display as part of the launch celebrations, as shown in the video below.

Hovabout owner Paul Barnett told that the service offers hovercraft rides piloted by former military personnel whilst raising funds for Help For Heroes.

"One of Hovabout's aims is to employ former military personnel who have been injured in the line of duty and to offer them a new and interesting role piloting the hovercraft," he said.

"We will be taking tourists and visitors around the bay for a small fee and will be offering an exciting new tourist attraction."

MP John Penrose said he was delighted to throw his support behind the "innovative tourism venture" as he took the first official flight on Hovabout's craft, which is a HovPod hovercraft.

Other dignataries at the event included Mayor and Mayoress Michael and Maria Clarke and Sedgemoor District Council Chairman Jane Moreton.

Bob Nicholson, Chairman of Somerset Tourism Association, told "This is a wonderful way of helping our troops while also introducing a fun tourism facility to the area. We wish Hovabout every success."

The rides, which open to the public shortly, will cost £7 per person for a 7-8 minute flight along the beach.

Jamie Cooper, a member of the Rifles Regiment who served in the Middle East, is one of the hovercraft pilots

Cllr Jane Moreton and Cllr Dennis Davey meeting the Red Devils team

Mayor and Mayoress Michael and Maria Clarke at Friday's launch

Tourism Minister John Penrose took the first flight in the hovercraft

Mr Penrose gave his support to the new business

The Red Devils put on a superb show, floating down onto Burnham beach

Local schoolchildren were invited along to the launch


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