Queenborough pontoon now in position

Queenborough pontoon croppedDick Holness took this photo today.  Yesterday the “harbour lookout” and container were taken by lorry to Sheerness then brought back again by sea.

UPDATE: The pontoon is expected to be open for business from 12 November.

John Kempton and Alastair Hand to abseil for the Medway Queen

Chatham Marina manager Alastair Hand and lock-keeper John Kempton will be abseiling down the side of the Premier Inn in Canterbury on Saturday to raise funds for the restoration of the Paddle Steamer Medway Queen. John has been a volunteer for the charity for 30 years. To find out more and to donate please visit www.justgiving.com/John-Kempton

Part of Kingsnorth Power Station to be demolished on 23 Oct

Kingsnorth Power Station

Photo Wikipedia

Not the chimney, at least not yet! E.ON have not published dates for demolition of the two power station chimneys but Peel Ports Notice to Mariners No 31 defines an exclusion zone 250 metres from the foreshore on Thursday evening from 18:00 to 19:40, when the demolition event will occur, followed by an all clear siren. The river will remain open to navigation.

Support Medway Watersports Centre

Medway Watersports Centre, which provides youth training, is no longer run by Medway Council. Trevor Peen asks you to vote for the Trust’s application for a grant to refurbish their changing rooms. Instructions for voting for Medway Watersports

PLA Public Meeting

Nick Ardley informs us that the autumn public meeting held by the PLA was held at the Island YC, Canvey Island, (his club) on Thursday. There were  issues which Medway and Swale sailors may be interested in:

Queenborough latest: pontoons now in place

News just in, as they say on CNN: the 60 metre x 9 metre pontoon (in 3 sections joined together) have now been installed and connected to the All Tide Landing hammerhead. However, the pontoons are not yet available for use.

RNLI yacht sailing safety survey

RNLI Safety SurveyIf you sail a yacht, please complete this survey to help the RNLI, Royal Yachting Association and Maritime and Coastguard Agency improve sailing safety in the UK. The survey is open from Oct 9th – Nov 9th. Follow this link for the survey and for a poster to print and display in your club or marina: http://www.rnliyachting.substance.coop/

Petition: Improving access to the River Medway

Please download the petition, print it, and get signatures from your club or organisation.

“We the undersigned call on Medway Council to improve access to the River Medway at the Strand in Gillingham. The condition of the slipway at the Strand, known as Commodore’s Hard, has deteriorated in recent years due to lack of maintenance. The edges of the slipway have broken away, making it increasingly difficult and dangerous to use. Until now it has been recognised as an excellent, all-tide access point and is well used by Medway Cruising Club, Medway Watersports, Rowing Clubs, Childrens Charities, Sea Scouts and individual residents. But we are in danger of completely losing this facility. The Council-owned access road leading up to Commodore’s Hard has also been neglected and is full of potholes which need attention. We urge Medway Council to help achieve its aim of “Making better use of the River Medway” by making permanent, extensive repairs to Commodore’s Hard and resurfacing the access road leading to it”

Trevor Peen hopes to submit the petition to the November council meeting. Please return the petition to Medway Watersports, Approach Road, The Strand, Gillingham, ME7 1TT

PS Waverley to visit Medway, 12 October

PS Waverley

The sea-going paddle steamer Waverley will visit the River Medway on the afternoon of Sunday 12 October. The embarcation point is Gravesend. Book here.

Port operator fined following deaths of tug crew

Clydeport Operations Ltd, owned by Peel Ports, have been fined £650,000 for health and safety breaches after the deaths of three tug crewmen. Tug operator Switzer was also fined £1.7m.

In December 2007 the Flying Phantom was one of three tugs assisting the 70,000 tonne cargo ship Red Jasmine as it made its way along the River Clyde. In thick fog, the Flying Phantom called the ship to say they had grounded and the pilot instructed the tug to let go the line. However, the line came taut and the tug was pulled over and capsized – a situation known as “girting”.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency found that there were shortcomings in the application of the Port Marine Safety code in that neither the company secretary, nor the operations/human resources director, received training to adequately fulfil their role as the designated person with responsibility to ensure health and safety. Nevertheless a spokesman for Peel Ports has told the MSBA that no causal link was established between these health and safety breaches and the fatal incident.