Case Study: Stannah at the 2012 Olympic sailing venue, Portland Marina

In Osprey Quay, Portland, everything is new and shiny. It sits in Weymouth Bay and Portland Harbour, the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic sailing venue, which is also ready and waiting to attract millions of visitors.

The Harbour is already home to the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy and has hosted numerous international sailing events, proving its suitability for 2012.

The commercial Marina is Dorset’s finest and is looking forward to being centre-stage too. The Marina offices and ‘The Boat that Rocks’ bar and restaurant, both two storey buildings at the water’s edge, feature Stannah lifts, to ensure easy access for all and great customer service too.

Osprey Quay Marina Offices

In the bustling Marina offices alternative vertical access needed to be provided for people unable to use the stairs. A Stannah Midilift SL vertical platform lift ensures alternative easy access over two floors for everyone unable to use the stairs. The lift was supplied in its own structure, with no need for a pit, so only required minimum building work. It’s a very economical solution to easy movement around the offices. It also helps the building adhere to the latest building regulations in line with The Equality Act 2010.

The 2-stop lift travels from an inner hallway to a suite of offices on the upper floor. Unlike a conventional passenger lift, only the platform and operating panel moves within the fixed shaft, saving energy and so operating costs, compared to a conventional passenger lift.

Standard platform lifts, like the Midilift SL, are ideal for providing passenger vertical travel in buildings where the lift is not constantly in use, but rather provided for occasional use. The lift has easy operating buttons and a full height landing door on both levels. The large platform is designed to accommodate up to three standing passengers or a wheelchair user and one standing passenger.


Just across the extensive deck from the Marina office is ‘The Boat that Rocks’, a popular dining venue and bar with some of the best views on the south coast. It is set to be a hub of activity by taking centre stage in 2012. The venue will be taken over by the Olympic Authority and used to feed The Olympic Family through the whole Olympic and Paralympic period.

Great Service

A large panoramic bar and restaurant area wraps around the ground floor of the building, providing a friendly family-orientated oasis in which to relax. Beyond the central service bar the busy kitchens service both this ground floor eatery and the first floor private function rooms.

For two floor service, this inviting rendezvous relies on its Stannah Trolleylift 250kg to make light work of the movement of food and goods. Upstairs, behind the function room’s sweeping bar is a small kitchen where the Trolleylift arrives straight from the working kitchen below. The busy service lift is essential for maintaining great service during the event by ferrying all the food and tableware with ease, leaving the staff to wait on the guests.

Easy access to a great view

The entertainment suite overlooks the marina and affords great views right around the harbour, making it a very popular venue for special occasions. For ease of public access to the first floor a second Stannah Midilift SL sits alongside the steep stairway to the function room to ensure no one is left out of the party.

Apart from the sailing…

Portland Marina is a fabulous location. If you are not mooring up after some fine sailing, you can enjoy the sights and sounds of marine activities whilst relaxing with your feet firmly on the ground.

The Marina sits at the most southerly point of the Isle of Portland, an area approximately 6km long and 2.4km wide. It’s about 8km south of the popular beach resort of Weymouth in Dorset and the area from Weymouth to Portland forms one of the largest man-made harbours in the world. The area was established as a Royal Navy base and played a crucial role during both the first and Second World Wars.

Running the length of the island, opposite the harbour, is Chesil Beach. This marks the central point of the Jurassic Coast of England that stretches over the South Devon and Dorset coastline. This World Heritage site is popular hunting ground for both professional and amateur geologists as the limestone has preserved some of UK’s finest fossils and created outstanding land forms.

The summer of 2012 will focus the world’s attention on this relatively tiny part of England and, hopefully, leave behind a legacy that will benefit the perfectly formed Portland Harbour development.

“The lifts at ‘The Boat that Rocks’ are crucial in our day-to-day operations. We just couldn’t function well without them. The food lift just makes our upstairs functions so much easier to manage, protects our staff from excessive or awkward manual handling and ensures our customer service is tip top. Just what we need for our own Olympic challenge!”
Russell Levett, Marina Manager, Portland Marina

Post Olympics longevity

All three Stannah lifts installed at the Marina were supplied with a Stannah 1-year, full maintenance package as part of the supply contract. The South of England branch of Stannah Lift Services, a national network providing 24-hour, 365 days a year support will be ensuring that everything runs smoothly at Portland.

Total capability

More than 250 lift engineers look after more than 83,000 lift products from all manufacturers, so Stannah really do keep the nation moving. Stannah also provide comprehensive bespoke lift services, lift refurbishment and the engineering expertise to supply a whole range of lift products, including escalators and moving walkways.

The Stannah promise

Stannah is committed to delivering:

  • The best quality products
  • Superior service
  • Good value for money
  • And, last but not least, reliability

All backed by a 150-year lift manufacturing pedigree.