Finesse Rally

Nick Ardley, our well known local ditch-crawler, reports a fairly successful rally for Finesse clinker built yachts at Chatham last weekend.

You can read Nick’s blog about it here.

Two of the boats with their current owners had never sailed into the Medway before – one said, ‘I was fascinated by the activity and obvious remains to be seen…’ And she commented on how pretty it was.

Paul Mace

Sadly we have to report that Paul Mace, long time Captain of the Medway Branch of the RNSA, passed away on 3rd May. A keen and knowledgeable sailor himself, Paul’s enthusiasm and leadership of the local RNSA developed the Branch and steered it through difficult times and it is much to his credit that it is now a healthy and flourishing club.  He will be sorely missed by all in the RNSA, and the many other river users to whom Paul freely gave his time, help and guidance.

Paul served in the Royal Navy as a submariner.   He also served on board HMS Cavalier, now preserved in Chatham Historic Dockyard and Paul was an active member of the HMS Cavalier Association, helping to maintain the ship when time allowed.

Our condolences go out to Paul’s family at this sad time.

Push the Boat Out in May 2018

This month, nearly 50 clubs and centres in London and the South East are offering free sailing taster sessions as part of RYA Push the Boat Out 2018.

Medway clubs known to be participating are Wilsonian Sailing Club (12 May), Elite Sailing (19 May), and Medway Yacht Club (19 May).

Nick Ardley in “My Classic Boat” film

A charming 12 minute film featuring local “ditch crawler” Nick and Christobel Ardley on their wooden Finesse 24. Whimbrel can often be seen cruising in the Medway and Swale, usually with her matching sailing tender in tow.

More background to the film on Nick’s website…

CA Winter Warmer Talk, 110 Years of Cruising by Jeremy Batch, 8 March

What is it? All will be revealed by Jeremy.

There is nothing… absolutely nothing, half-so-much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” Appropriately, those words were first published in 1908, the year that the Cruising Association was founded based on a different book: “Cruising for 100 Years” by Brian Hammett and with additional material provided by many other members, this is Jeremy’s adaptation of the story of the CA over the past 110 years, told against the background of a century of developments  in  leisure boating  and  marine   technology  including:  how  a  melted  ice- cream led to an invention which has been blessed – and cursed – by every CA member [and it wasn’t the freezer] and how  “the most valuable cargo we ever sent to America” can now be found on many of our homes

The Cruising Association Kent Section Winter Warmers are held at 8pm on the 2nd Thursday of each month at The Dog & Bear Hotel, The Square, Lenham, ME17 2PG, which is 8 miles east of Maidstone, just off the A20 in the village square. All are welcome. There is a small charge of £3. Many eat beforehand and it helps speed up service if you telephone the pub on 01622 858219 and order your meal before 5pm.

Is your bottom clean? Medway CC, now Thurs 8 March

  • Want to know why there are so many options of antifoul on the shelves?
  • Interested in how they work? And why they’re different?
  • How about the future for antifouling?

Join us at Medway Cruising Club clubhouse, The Strand, Gillingham ME7 1TT, at 7pm on Thursday 8 March, where International Paint’s Technical Support Specialist Tim Bannister will talk us through some of the different products and technologies available and the advantages/disadvantages of each. Antifoul vs. copper coat, and some of the new products that will be introduced over the next few years. Plus a Q&A session if you have any other paint queries.

ALL WELCOME! Contact: Chris Diaper, chrisdiaper58(at)gmail.com

CA Winter Warmer Talks, 8 Feb 2018

Caroline Milmo will give a short presentation on the CA Crewing Service and tell us about her trip from Lymington to Svalbard in the Norwegian archipelago. This will give you a flavor of how YOU can make use of the service. The CA’s Crewing Service puts skippers and crew in touch.

Clifford Mickleburgh will talk about his trip around the Frisian Islands in Dawn Owl. The Frisian Islands are a chain of islands in the North Sea off the Dutch coast, along the edge of the Wadden Sea. They continue further east as the German East Frisian Islands. If you have sailed the East Coast you will be fascinated by the Frisian Islands and the Wadden Sea.

The Cruising Association Kent Section Winter Warmers are held at 8pm on the 2nd Thursday of each month at The Dog & Bear Hotel, The Square, Lenham, ME17 2PG, which is 8 miles east of Maidstone, just off the A20 in the village square. All are welcome. There is a small charge of £3. Many eat beforehand and it helps speed up service if you telephone the pub on 01622 858219 and order your meal before 5pm.

The next CA Winter Warmer will be as follows:

  • 8 March 2018: Jeremy Batch on 110 Years of Cruising

Chatham Interface Land Proposal – please respond before 22 Dec

Please add your response to the Chatham Interface Land proposal using this questionnaire. Please share it on social media too.

PLEASE NOTE: For your views to count, you must send your response, ideally using the questionnaire, to Medway Council. Email planning.policy@medway.gov.uk

The Council say they want to retain the Dockyard slip, but will it just end up boxed in with inadequate parking and facilities like Gillingham Pier slipway?

There are two parcels of land involved in this planning proposal, which covers part of the Chatham Historic Dockyard. Let’s keep the housing on the landward part. The riverside part is not huge and is the only green space next to the river with access to the water, with far greater amenity value to the community. Lying between a busy shopping centre and a world class visitor attraction, it would not be an attractive place to live. The area gets very busy in the summer when events are on; traffic and parking will always be a problem. Having a residents’ parking scheme would create the problems that can be now seen at Gillingham Pier where overflow shoppers vie for parking spaces with residents and anyone wanting to use the Pier. Or will the Dockyard slip be abandoned and left unusable like Commodore’s Hard?

Please suggest in your response how the slipway and its surroundings should be used. How about a first class public slipway with a community clubhouse? Maybe nautical themed bars and restaurants nearby should be welcomed if they are not too close and the a pontoon would encourage boats to visit, thus boosting the local economy.

MSBA member clubs, the Royal Navy Sailing Association and the Royal Engineer Yacht Club are based at the Historic Dockyard where they use the slipway to access their moorings. Let’s support them by expressing our concerns to the Proposal: