Do you recognise this boat?

This rare lifting-keel Sadler 32 was seen on Greenborough Marsh, near Stangate Creek. Thanks to helpful members of the boating community, the owner has been traced and informed. It appears that Allegretto became detached from her mooring in Gillingham Reach some days ago and drifted 4.5 miles due eastwards.

Allegretto – photo Denis Johnson

Try Sailing at Medway YC, Sat 21 March

Come and visit Medway Yacht Club for our first event of the season. It is open to everyone and free of charge: you can go for a sail with an experienced club member. If you already have some sailing experience, you can try a different class of boat. If you are an absolute beginner and you would like to try the great feeling of sailing on River Medway, this is an unmissable opportunity!

Also try our Stand Up Paddleboard with one of our instructors, guiding you for your first experience on a board!

Medway Yacht Club offers a warm welcome to all new visitors and members, we have a new training programme including sailing on regular basis, powerboat, paddle and shore based courses. We are family friendly with a strong focus on our junior and youth sailing pathway, but we also offer a lot of learning and racing possibilities for adults.

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/98759699921

https://www.facebook.com/events/187680585872474/

Marine & Coastal Biosecurity Workshop, 10.30-2pm, Thurs 12 Dec – PLACES STILL AVAILABLE

The Marine & Coastal Biosecurity and Invasive Non-Native Species (INNS) workshop will be held at Riverside Country Park, Gillingham on Thursday 12 December. It is primarily targeted towards people involved with the management of coastal/marine waters, or for those who work, organise, or deliver activities in coastal/ marine areas. For example:

•       Marine kayaking/watersport/boating clubs
•       Marinas, ports and boat yard owners
•       Estuary & Catchment Partnerships
•       Harbour authorities
•       Coastal managers/beach owners

This is the first of two workshops to be held in this area, and is designed to provide attendees with the tools to better manage the threat of INNS and help create a draft biosecurity plan. It will include:

•       An overview of regionally important INNS
•       Improving site biosecurity
•       Tools to write an effective estuary biosecurity plan
•       INNS reporting

This workshop is free to attend and there will be refreshments available throughout the morning and a light networking lunch provided at the end of the workshop.

A second, follow-up workshop will be held in early 2020 with the aim of pulling together the outputs from the first workshop and producing a draft estuary-level biosecurity plan for the Medway Estuary area.

Here is the link to register your attendance for the event: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/marine-coastal-biosecurity-workshop-tickets-80872236035

If you have any questions about the event or would like more information, please feel free to contact Alice Morley, Marine Conservation Officer, Kent Wildlife Trust, phone 07702 551524 or email Alice.Morley (at) kentwildlife.org.uk

RYA webinar “Putting People First”, 5 Dec

If you didn’t get to the RYA Regional Affiliated Clubs seminar last Sunday you missed some very useful tips and information for keeping your club members engaged, particularly with regard to volunteering for the committee, work parties and so on.

All is not lost however; an access-for-all webinar will be broadcast on Thursday 5 December (7-8pm) to delve deeper into the findings and recommendations with the chance to ask questions. If you can’t join us please sign up anyway and you’ll be able to hear the recording after the live show. Register here for the webinar.

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. 

Arrival of HMS Medway, Tues 17 Sept 2019

HMS Medway. Photo Royal Navy.

HMS Medway is expected to arrive at Chatham Docks at 1400 on Tuesday 17 September. After locking into Basin 3 via the Bullnose, the warship will proceed to Basin 2 in Chatham Maritime. On Sunday 22 September the ship will be open to visitors from 10am to 4pm but no visitors will be admitted unless they have booked in advance. Visits can only be booked via www.eventbrite.co.uk from Tuesday 17 September.  UPDATE: All tickets are “sold out” but teh Navy hopes to make more available.

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PC David Lavender retires

At the MSBA business meeting last week we were sorry to report that PC David Lavender of the Kent Police Marine Unit has retired after many years of service to the local marine community.  He wrote to us in January as follows:

“I have been attending the MSBA meetings for the last eleven and a half years. I joined Kent Police Marine Unit in 2007 and one of the first things I was asked to do was to take over from Steve Elliot to become, for want of a better title, the police liaison. At the time the group was the Medway Yachting Association and Jenny Deacon was the chair. The group has gone through some changes during that time. The biggest of course was changing the name and new branding, but the group has kept the same ethos. The Medway and Swale themselves have also changed in those years, two powers stations chimneys gone! There have been a number of notable events over the years such as the Climate Camp 2008, Protester at Kingsnorth, the London Olympics, the Medway River Festival, not to mention the annual Admirals Cruise and of course Medway In Flames. I thank you from a policing perspective for your support in these, for example willingness to change race start times to avoid clashes! The marine unit has also gone through some changes during that time, which I have shared with you and you have been supportive. After thirty years of policing it is time for me to retire. I have, some of you may think, gone to the dark side and I start a new job with the Marine Management Organisation in early February. I have enjoyed the meeting and interactions, though some occasions have been challenging. Some may say this is all part of the job. I have tried to be honest and open when asked difficult questions and I know that you appreciate that. There have been things that I have achieved over the years and some I have failed to do. The lack of a proficient form of communication such as marine watch has been one of these, but hopefully when Country Eye gets into full swing this may finally happened.  I thank you for the information that you have shared with us and have been willing to pass on information to your clubs and MSBA website on our behalf. Such as stolen/boats of interest and missing persons etc. I thank you for welcome and inclusiveness. You may see me again in my role with the MMO.”

We sincerely wish Dave success and satisfaction in his new role. It’s not clear at the moment who, if anyone, will replace him as our police liaison person.