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MALDON’S HYTHE QUAY COLLAPSES

A 25m section of the Hythe Quay at Maldon has collapsed and the stonework is being supported by a dry dock barge that has been sunk in position alongside.


The Blackwater River Bailiff, Nigel Harmer, said that: “Maldon District Council has taken the matter in hand and has provided funding for repairs and are currently discussing design options for improved facilities with their consultants. Planning and licence applications are currently being made. It is likely that the works will not be completed until the latter part of the year and with many barges to accommodate and the loss of one mooring tier, potential visiting yachtsmen are asked to make alternative arrangements for this this season. A number of the local boatyards have berths available and I would ask that they make arrangements prior to arriving.”


When we visited the quay, the pontoon normally used by visitors was occupied by a pair of Dutch barges, which appeared to be in long term occupation, again leaving no space for visiting yachts to lie.



WORK FINISHED - BUOY REMOVED

A Notice to Mariners issued by the Crouch Harbour Authority on 28th March states that all seaborne deliveries to the Middlewick Wind Farm north of the River Crouch have been completed and the temporary yellow buoy at Holliwell Point (see story below) has been removed.



MIND THE YELLOW BUOY

A temporary special mark — a yellow buoy with a cross topmark — has been established near Holliwell Point on the River Crouch in approximate position 51º 37.255’N 000º 54.206’E.


According to the Crouch Harbour Authority, this buoy marks a temporary tide and swell gauge on the river bed, which is associated with the installation of the Middlewick Wind Farm.



CROUCH BUOY RETURNED

The Crouch NCB has been put back on station, according to a notice issued by the Crouch Harbour Authority.



CROUCH BUOY REMOVED

The Crouch Harbour Authority has issued a warning that the Crouch NCB off Shore Ends has been taken off station until further notice.



ROGER TAYLOR TALK ON BUILDING MINGMING II

She’s been launched, she’s begun sea trials and now Roger Taylor is booked to give an illustrated talk about her design and creation. Where? The Royal Corinthian YC, Burnham on Crouch. When? Saturday, 1st February.


For full details, click here.



SWALLOWTAIL BUOY REINSTATED

After a brief absence, the Swallowtail WCB has been returned to its station in the River Crouch approaches.


SWALLOWTAIL BUOY REMOVED

The Crouch Harbour Authority has removed the Swallowtail WCB from the River Crouch approaches until further notice.


REDUCED BRIGHTLINGSEA LIGHTS BACK

The leading lights for night entry to Brightlingsea Creek have been reinstated, but at temporarily reduced power, a notice to mariners from the harbour commissioners has announced.


The two red lights, located on white and red back boards above the beach are kept in transit after passing the Brightlingsea Spit SCB.



BRIGHTLINGSEA LEADING LIGHTS OUT

The two red leading lights for night entry to Brightlingsea Creek are temporarily extinguished, according to a local notice to mariners issued by the Brightlingsea Harbour Commissioners.


Visitors can call on Ch.68 if further information is required.



LIMEHOUSE BASIN LOCK CLOSED

The Limehouse Basin tidal lock between the River Thames and Limehouse Marina is currently closed for repair work on the lock gates.


British Waterways Marinas Ltd and the Canal and Rivers Trust expect the lock to be back in action on about 13th December.


For further information contact the Limehouse Basin Marina, Tel: 0207 308 9930 or Email limehouse.marina@bwml.co.uk.



QUEENBOROUGH ALL-TIDE LANDING CLOSED

The All-Tide Landing at Queenborough has been closed by its owners, the Queenborough YC.


Apparently major repairs are needed to make the landing safe for use and we understand that such funds are simply not available.


Negotiations for the Harbour Trust to take over management of the landing fell through, leaving the QYC unable to keep it open. Everyone now has to wait and see what happens before next season.



HAVENGORE REOPENS

The Havengore bridge is back in full operation and “can be accessed when the Range is not active and Havengore Creek is navigable”.


To contact the bridge keeper, call on VHF Ch72 ‘Shoe Bridge’ or phone 01702 383436.



HAVENGORE BRIDGE CLOSED

The Havengore bridge is out of action awaiting the delivery of spare parts, according to the Range Control Manager, Shoeburyness.


The repairs are scheduled for Tuesday, 5th November and notice will be given when the bridge is back in operation.



MERSEA BUOY MISSING

The Quarters Spit ECB, which marks the divide between the Mersea and Tollesbury channels, is off station and is likely to remain absent over the winter.


It appears that the riser chain for the buoy parted and the buoy went float-about towards Tollesbury, but was recovered to Mersea, where it will remain ashore until its reinstatement.


Until the ECB is returned to its station, mariners bound into Mersea should tend towards the starboard (east) side of the channel, marked by SHBs, and those going to Tollesbury should make a sweeping turn between the last Mersea channel PHB and the first Tollesbury one. Keep a little south towards the Nass to stay off the Quarters Spit.



NEW VISITOR PONTOONS AT KING’S LYNN

A new pontoon has been established in the heart of King’s Lynn specifically to draw visiting cruisers to the port.


This is the first time the port has offered dedicated facilities for visiting leisure craft. The pontoon provides up to eight berths for vessels up to 20m LOA with a maximum draught of 1.5m.


Under the campaign banner of ‘Sail the Wash’, King’s Lynn has worked closely with Fosdyke Yacht Haven and Wisbech Yacht Harbour to set up the website www.sailthewash.com and promote cruising in the Wash area.


For full details, including local transport, click here.



HARWICH DREDGING OPERATIONS

Harwich Haven Authority (HHA) has issued a Notice to Mariners announcing the commencement of dredging operations in Harwich harbour and the Deep Water Channel as far as the South Shipwash.


Operations are to begin on or about Sunday, 18th August and will continue for approximately 10 days. Vessels involved are the dredger Mjolner R and the tug Westsund. Detailed dredger movements can be had from Harwich VTS on Ch 71.


For full details of the operation click here.



DETAILS OF BUOYAGE CHANGES FOR LONDON GATEWAY

There have been a number of significant buoyage changes in the area of Sea Reach to the Sunk because of the London Gateway Project, which will affect both Estuary crossings and passages to and from the London river.


These changes have now been collated by Roger Gaspar (www.crossingthethamesestuary.com) and presented with full details plus chartlets of their locations to help navigators with their planning. Click here to download the informative PDF.



BARGE TRUST WINS LOTTERY FUNDING

The Thames Sailing Barge Trust (TSBT) has received confirmation of a £100,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to complete conservation work on the barge Centaur.


The project, which begins this month, will include restoration of Centaur’s wooden bottom planking to its original thickness and is due to be completed by early next year. This will enable the TSBT to continue operating the 118 year old barge for the use of local groups and members of the public. Trainee shipwrights will be able to extend their experience of working on larger wooden vessels while working on the barge and there will be opportunities for volunteers, youth organisations and schools to “research the early history of Centaur and to use modern media and displays to share their output with the wider public”.


Roger Newlyn, Trustee and Chairman of the TSBT, said: “We’re delighted that the Heritage Lottery Fund has given us this grant. SB Centaur carried bulk cargoes on the Thames Estuary and the rivers of Essex, Suffolk and Kent for over 60 years and these days she is central to the Trust’s aims of passing on to the next generation the traditions of sailing and maintaining these iconic East Coast vessels.”


For more information about the TSBT and Centaur visit www.bargetrust.org.