After numerous complaints about the increased quantity of hazardous floating debris in the upper reaches of the tidal Medway, especially between Aylesford and Allington, we have just been informed by James Goodfellow that Peel Ports will at last be undertaking a river clearance today. Peel Ports have traditionally run regular rubbish clearance operations using the Medway Otter but this elderly vessel has had operational difficulties of late. The debris includes numerous large logs, several gas cylinders and floating rubbish of all kinds. Motor boaters, deterred from using the river for fear of damage to hull and propellers, have been deserting the non-tidal marinas because of the danger of passing this stretch of the river. A major rowing event was cancelled too.
A talk by Simon Judge on last year’s visit by eleven boats from St Pancras Cruising Club. A narrowboat convoy went from London to the Medway last year: 11 went, 10 came back.
Kent and East Sussex IWA
Wednesday 11 Oct 2017, 7.30 for 8.00pm
At Gravesend Sailing Club, East Promenade, Gravesend. DA12 2BS
Network Rail will be closing the non-tidal River Medway to navigation at the railway bridge, just upstream of the disused lock and below Branbridges at East Peckham, (known as East Peckham Rail Bridge). This is effective from the 1st October until mid December – for essential Bridge repairs.
Less than a month after the reopening of East Farleigh lock, the non-tidal Medway is again closed to navigation. This time it’s because of severe damage to Teston Bridge, allegedly caused by a drunken driver who was arrested at the scene. Read more on Kent Online…
UPDATE: It’s expected that the river will re-open for navigation this Sunday (20 August).
The Environment Agency, which manages the non-tidal Medway, is reported to be confident that East Farleigh Lock will reopen on the afternoon of Friday 21 July. There may be a scramble as boats which have waiting all season to move up or down the river will take the opportunity to move.
We are sad to report that Ron Judd has died tragically. He fell from a ladder whilst working on Nepos in Gillingham Marina last Thursday. He was air lifted to London but he never regained consciousness. He had extensive head injuries and life support was turned off on Friday evening. Ron was a member of the Medway Motor Yacht Club, which was a member of the MYA. Details of the funeral can be obtained in due course from Nigel Jennings, past Commodore of MMYC, on 07775 701631.
In addition to the delay in repairing the lock wall, a pair of Grey Wagtails have made a nest in a key part of the construction site. The contractors are unable to work near the nest until the young birds have fledged. The earliest date for the lock to re-open is now 21 July. The footpath and canoe portage remain passable.
UPDATE: The fledglings have now flown so the lock is expected to open by 21 July.
Medway Bridge Marina invite you to their Motor Sport Themed Black Tie Charity Ball on Friday 6 October at Mercure Hotel, Brands Hatch. Enjoy the company of a mystery F1 driver from the 70s and a 3 course meal with wine, then auction and entertainment till 1am. Tickets £55 per person or table of 10 for £500. To reserve your tickets call Sam or Kelly on 01634 843576.