RYA Affiliated Clubs Conference, Maidstone, 24 Nov 2019

It’s not too late to register for this excellent conference, free to representatives of local RYA affiliated clubs. The day is a fantastic opportunity for you to meet and network with other clubs, share ideas and success stories and discuss the current issues that are having an impact, both in clubs and the sport more widely. Places for this conference are free with lunch and refreshments provided at no cost. Due to limited capacity pre-booking is essential, so get in early to avoid disappointment. This year’s conferences are about ‘Putting people first’. That means understanding what your members, volunteers and new sailors need, and putting that at the forefront of your decision making. Whether you want to grow your membership, increase your volunteer base, develop your instructors and race coaches or simply get better at retaining members of all ages, interests and abilities, you will leave with the ideas and information you need to make it happen.

To find out more and register click here.

CA Winter Warmer: Medway Pilot, Thu 14 Nov 2019

David Lloyd will reminisce about his life and times as a pilot, picking up ships off Ramsgate and advising the master of a safe route to the Medway. David’s home port was Sheerness but other ports were served including Ridham Dock and we will hear of “near misses” when the train had priority. David will describe a typical trip into the Medway and highlight occasional “difficulties” both with ships and captains. There will be much for us to learn.

We are all invited to these excellent Kent Cruising Association talks, which are held at 8pm at the Dog and Bear, Lenham, near Maidstone. It’s a good idea to book a meal (by 5pm please) on 01622 858219 for 7pm, before the talk. A special CA menu is available.

Chatham Docks to close in 2025

As long suspected, Peel Land & Property have revealed that Chatham Docks will close in 2025 for redevelopment into housing, retail, tourism and leisure. Business Minister Kelly Tolhurst has expressed concern at the potential loss of up to 800 jobs at the docks that have been the centre of Chatham’s economic activity for hundreds of years. Peel have not yet responded to the MP’s request for a meeting.  The privately-owned Peel Group makes no secret that their business is primarily about highly profitable property development at the many old docks and harbours that they have acquired. Dave Harris of Medway Council is reported to have said, “It is a landowner’s decision as to whether existing use of a site continues and the local authority has no control over this.”

Kingsferry Bridge Closures, Oct 2019

Network Rail have informed Peel Ports Medway that, due to essential maintenance, the Kingsferry Bridge will be inoperative and unable to be lifted on the following dates and times: 21:00 07/10/19 – 00:30 08/10/19 • 21:00 08/10/19 – 00:30 09/10/19 • 21:00 09/10/19 – 00:30 10/10/19 • 21:00 21/10/19 – 00:30 22/10/19 • 21:00 22/10/19 – 00:30 23/10/19 • 21:00 23/10/19 – 00:30 24/10/19. Admiralty Chart Numbers 2482 & 2572 refer. Further information may be obtained from Medway VTS on VHF Channel 74, call sign “Medway VTS” or telephone 0151 949 6148 or 0151 949 6650

CA Winter Warmer: Colin Brown on RNLI, Thu 10 Oct

Colin Brown has been an active boating enthusiast and, owning his own boat for most of his life, the RNLI has always been close to his heart. Having the knowledge that they were always there should he ever have the misfortune to be in trouble whilst at sea has been very comforting. The RNLI story is one that captures audiences young and old The presentation is a fast moving talk supported by video, slide and sound and tells the story of the modern RNLI operations, equipment and training Colin will also bring with him a charity box and some merchandise and leaflets

We are all invited to these excellent Kent Cruising Association talks, which are held at 8pm at the Dog and Bear, Lenham, near Maidstone. It’s a good idea to book a meal (by 5pm please) on 01622 858219 for 7pm before the talk. A special CA menu is available.

New RYA training dates at Medway YC

Inti, the new training manager at Medway Yacht Club, invites members of RYA/MSBA affiliated clubs to MYC training events at the special members’ rates. Here are the dates for for October and November 2019:

RYA POWERBOAT LEVEL 2 COURSE: 17/18 OCTOBER, 31/1 OCTOBER/NOVEMBER, 14/15 NOVEMBER, 21/22 NOVEMBER

RYA SAFETY BOAT COURSE:  24/25 OCTOBER, 7/8 NOVEMBER

FIRST AID COURSE: 16 OCTOBER, 11 NOVEMBER 

More info here: http://www.medwayyachtclub.com/training/formal-training

“Stress Free”, Hollowshore CC, Oct 19

Duncan Wells.

DUNCAN WELLS, author of the highly-regarded “Stress Free” series of instructional books and DVDs on sailing, motor boating and navigation, will be guest speaker at Hollowshore Cruising Club, Faversham, on Saturday October 19 at 7pm. There is no entry charge, and visitors are welcome. He has a wealth of experience as an RYA instructor and skipper, and as Principal of Westview Sailing School, which produces the Westview Sailing RYA shore-based Day Skipper and Yachtmaster video tutorials used by RYA students. His presentation will include “robust” techniques for casting off and coming alongside from the cockpit. Hollowshore CC’s clubhouse is at Youngboats Yard, Oare Road, Faversham ME13 7TX.

Patman’s Wharf to become housing development

A planning application has been submitted to build houses and flats on the site of Patman’s Wharf at Upnor. Comments may be submitted on Medway Council’s planning portal ref MC/19/2361

Should you wish to object here are some of the issues that can be raised for starters:

  1. Loss of increasingly scarce recreational amenity, namely affordable boat storage and maintenance, especially for the neighbouring sailing club and other local boaters.

2. The size and mass of the 3-storey terraced houses sited directly against the river front is totally unacceptable and a detriment to the area. The reference to the 3-storey estate under the heading SCALE is not relevant as the estate is not on the river front!

3. There is a need for Affordable Housing contribution. These residential units are aimed at middle and upper income earners.

4. Contrary to the statement that the air quality will not change, the proposal suggests 17 cars on the site, without counting any visitors.

5. Two cars per unit, one behind the other, is an impractical solution. No doubt cars will be parked all over the site and in the adjacent roads, adding to the existing highways problem locally. A Highways Statement is required for the reason of the already congested traffic flows and parking within the local area.

6. Under Lighting, the suggestion that a statement is not required is concerning as there are no controls proposed over the future lighting. Without doubt the future owners will add to the exterior lighting to the balconies and gardens. Enforceable controls need to be in place to ensure that this does not happen. Light pollution is a local problem and this development will only add to that.

7. Within the Design and Access Statement the Agent suggests that there is not a demand for a boat storage and maintenance yard. In support it refers to recent years when the business has been  failing. The current operation has been allowed to fail simply to justify this proposed development. The boatyard is a valuable asset for Medway boaters and with new management could once again be a thriving enterprise to the benefit of the local river community.