The Story So Far, A Potted History
Established in Cornwall in April 1989 we started as a scuba diving centre, quickly becoming a PADI 5 Star scuba diving and scuba training centre which quickly established itself as West Cornwall’s premier diver training centre. Business began with a RIB – Little Deeper – loads of enthusiasm - loads of dive gear – no where to keep it.
1989 October - moved to our first proper dive centre and retail premises in St. Ives – wow, loads of space.
1990 October - how did we manage to fill the space so quickly?
1991 - continued to build solid core of regular UK scuba divers – needed more space.
1992 - an excellent year in St. Ives but now bursting at the seams – four instructors working flat out throughout the summer.
1993 - more beginners than ever before - looking for a new premises – need more space.
1994 - moved to superb new premises in Canon’s Town between Penzance and St Ives, in Cornwall. We’d found our utopia, or so we thought, own pool, offering accommodation for students and beautiful grounds. But unfortunately were presented with a serious planning headache culminating after planning appeal and public enquiry, with us having to look for new premises. In the same year we also opened a unit on Long Rock Industrial Estate, Penzance, Cornwall for scuba equipment sales and to house the compressor.
1995 - toward the end of the year we found new premises. Another, much larger unit on Long Rock. This year also saw the arrival of a new boat – Little Deeper’s ‘sister’ - Little Deeper II - enabling us to carry more divers and comfortably cope with difficult weather conditions around the Cornwall coastline.
1996 - Opening early that year having moved the whole operation into Unit 15a – where we spent several years, loads of space!
1998 - Our 'new' premises now bursting at the seams, how did we fill it so quickly?
1999 - We introduced GUL wetsuits to our product range, and expanded further with many other top watersports brands incl Crewsaver, Bodyglove, Typhoon products.
2001 June - saw the culmination of three years of work and planning (and frustration) when we opened 'Undersea Adventures Red Sea' in Hurghada, Egypt.
2002 March 9th - was the launch date for our new, online shop with a wide range of products to purchase directly from the site.
2003 - massive expansion in the range of products on our website, now struggling to cope with more space urgently needed.
2004 - after 14 years of operating the scuba diving and training side, we decided it was time to switch the emphasis, by far the largest part of the business is now the online shop, so we decided to 'contract' out the scuba diving and scuba training side of the business.
2005 June - still growing, at last a move to our superb new premises in Hayle, Cornwall, 3 months later than planned, but glad to have managed the move, now we really have loads of space!
2005 August - where oh where did all that space go? We've filled the floor already, at least we have the height to go upwards in this building!
2005 September - Undersea Adventures Ltd gains 'Highly Commended' in the E-Commerce Awards 2005, South West Region. We were very pleased to receive the award in the 'Best Sales and Marketing Online' category for WatersportsWarehouse.co.uk. The presentation was held Wednesday 21st. September at the very impressive HP Labs, Bristol. And we enjoyed the champagne – Thank you.
2005-2006 - During all the moving and expansion we also developed our own line of Snorkelling Equipment - Reefwear Masks, Reefwear Snorkels, Reefwear Fins and even a Reefwear Snorkelling and General Purpose Buoyancy Aid
2006 - Adding to our snorkelling range and working in conjunction with a local Cornish surf brand we designed and launched our first Reefwear wetsuit collection with Junior Wetsuits for Spring Summer - a range of Full suits and Shorties for general waterports use
2006 - later that same year we also spread our Reefwear wetsuit range to Adult suits for Spring Summer and a range for Winter
2008 July - Wow – we are now in the roof – well almost. We’ve increased our storage and despatch facility and taken on more staff to help with our growing online and IT needs, our retail shop requirements and warehousing. Our shop continues to attract visitors from far and wide as we appeal to an ever increasing customer base here in Cornwall, throughout the UK and from Europe.
2009-2010 - Saw the expansion of our Reefwear range of wetsuits and Reefwear Snorkelling gear we've been able to stay one step ahead of the competition by providing superb dive quality masks and snorkels at superb prices to appeal to the holidaying and 'have-a-go' snorkeller from complete beginner through to Freediving level.
2011 - By continually adapting our business we've developed a huge product range and are able to offer the best selection of watersports equipment from our base in West Cornwall - our aim has always been the same. This could be a tough year for all retailers but we simply keep doing what we've done for the last 20 plus years, we don't stand still, provide excellent customer service supported by a solid base of Watersports brands, and have a wealth of knowledge and experience to aid customers buy the right product and at a competitive price.
Our success has been due to the dedication of our team to continually maintain a standard of service and quality of scuba training other diving establishments could only admire. Our advice is often sought by non-divers and divers alike for our ‘insider’ knowledge of the coastal region around Cornwall – everything from the best places to go snorkelling and boarding to providing neoprene to decorate a surgical bandage !! The service previously provided in the scuba diving business is now carried through to our online business with 97.5% of orders being despatched on time (same day weekdays) and 98% of our stock lines in stock at any one time, so we are able to despatch orders as soon as they hit our computer screens, figures hard to beat but as always, our aim is to do better.
We would like to thank all our customers both regular and new.