Set aside as much of the weekend of 24/25 October as possible, because the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham in the UK will be awash with divers – and you and your friends and family need to be there with them.
DIVE 2015 is the Show of the Year, and it’s an extra-special event because it marks 25 years of successful Shows organised at the NEC by the DIVER Group in that time.
Booking ahead brings significant cash savings but every ticket sale brings with it the chance to win a fortnight’s dive trip for two to the Mexican Pacific worth £8000 in the Grand Prize Draw.
ON THE FLOOR
Get your bearings at the New Product Showcase, a snapshot of the diving-equipment market’s latest offerings, and decide which kit you want to look at in more depth around the aisles.
You might even decide to try some of it out in the Technical Pool, especially if it’s one of the new generation of rebreathers.
You don’t have to be a CCR diver to get wet, of course – for beginners the Try-Dive Pool awaits, with Stoney Cove dive school divers standing by to introduce you to the joys a regulator, tank and BC can offer.
As usual, one of the pleasures of the Dive Show is the chance to meet the people who have hosted your dive holidays in the past or who will welcome you on trips in the future.
Whether you’re catching up or looking for information, check out the Asia-Pacific Showcase, Caribbean Village, British Isles Experience and all the other parts of the diving world represented around the hall and find out where your next dive-trip will take you.
Kit ticked, holidays ticked – and the third part of the equation is skills development, with a number of training agencies represented at DIVE 2015.
The PADI VILLAGE and SSI ZONE offer a further swathe of training and travel ideas, while the British sub-aqua club, which is holding its annual conference at the NEC, will be present in force with its branch pods.
Then there is the Photozone, where kit, holidays and training combine in a magnificent outpouring of underwater photographic talent. Take part in judging the British Society of Underwater Photographers’ annual prints competition and get involved in the constant exchange of tips and ideas flowing between speakers, exhibitors and visitors.
ON THE STAGES
The 25th Dive Show line-up of diving presentations take place on the main DIVER Stage, the Centre Stage and in the two Ocean Theatres, and although it’s early days yet, we can promise you treats in store:
Paul Rose: “What will you be talking about, Paul?” “I’m here at Pond Inlet about to head north to establish camp at the northern tip of Baffin Island – how about ‘Diving the Wild Places’?” Sounds good!
Mark Powell: “Training Doesn’t Work” – some of the problems with current scuba-diving training and what we can do to fix those problems. Controversy alert – not for the first time with this popular Show presenter.
Monty Halls will be back from an exciting top-secret expedition “and doubtless I’ll be blithering on about it at the Dive Shows,” he said in last month’s column, so stand by for hot news! Monty’s custom Land-Rover Defender and Humber RIB will be back too, and with him at the Show. The trip? We hear that sharks may have been involved…
Louise Trewavas: “The All-Time Top 10 Diving Mistakes – And How To Survive Them.” We’ve all been there – more advice you can’t afford to miss.
Alex Mustard is the man who straightened us all out about the contents of our favourite Red Sea wreck, and he’ll be back with a new twist on “Thistlegorm’s Cargo” which requires you to get involved.
Alex will also be talking in the PhotoZone alongside Martin Edge – and talking of the PhotoZone, drop into the audience at the Centre Stage to see some of the finest double acts since Eric & Ernie, including Saeed Rashid & Nigel Wade, Nick & Caroline Robertson-Brown and Jane Morgan & Gill McDonald.
Win an £8000 trip to the Land of the Giants just by turning up for DIVE 2015!
A landmark show, a landmark prize: By entering the DIVE 2015 Grand Prize Draw, you and a chosen companion have the chance of winning a trip of a lifetime.
Your jumping-off point will be the bustling marina resort of Cabo San Lucas in Mexico. From there you will join a luxury liveaboard to dive in the eastern Pacific. Your trip will take in some of those dive-sites that make even the most experienced divers go weak at the knees – the spectacular Socorro Islands, San Benedicto and Roca Partida.
Expect to dive with the super-friendly giant Pacific manta rays (their wingspan has been known to reach 9m!), dolphins and sharks often in their hundreds, whale sharks, seals and ( from January to April, subject to availability) humpback whales. This area isn’t referred to as “the Mexican Galapagos” for nothing.
The prize, organised by UK tour operator The Scuba Place, comprises flights from London to Cabo San Lucas, one night all-inclusive hotel accommodation in the suite-only Dreams Cabo San Lucas Resort & Spa; nine nights on board either the spectacular Nautilus Belle Amie or Explorer on a full-board basis, and two further nights back in Cabo to get your land-legs back! All airport transfers are included.
Socorro is one of the hottest dive destinations on the market, so don’t miss this or any opportunity to dive it! All this could be yours and a buddy’s – just buy a DIVE 2015 ticket! Terms & conditions apply.
Buy tickets to DIVE 2015 here.