Celebrate Queenborough Independence Day on 17 June

Queenborough Independence Day

Queenborough Receives Independence from the Dutch in 1967

This year is the 50th anniversary of the official handing back of Queenborough by the Dutch. A ceremony was performed at Queenborough on 17 June 1967. The town will be holding a celebration of this on 17th June 2017 and it is hoped to make it an annual event. There will be a boat flotilla with changing of flags at midday plus events throughout Queenborough: Live bands, Treasure hunt, Stalls, Magic, Bouncy Castle, Fancy dress and Re-enactments. All are invited – please help to make this a memorable day! All proceeds will go to the local lifeboat station.

For more information, visit the Queenborough Independence Day website.

“Medway in Flames” Exclusion Zone, 17 June

Medway on Fire exclusion zoneOn the evening of 17 June from 21.40 to 22.40, a Temporary Exclusion Zone will be established from a line drawn perpendicularly across the river from Upnor Jetty (51°24.56´N 000°31.80´E) to a line drawn perpendicularly across the river at Whitewall Creek (51°23.90´N 000°31.40´E) as shown on the chartlet (left).

Between these times no vessel shall navigate, anchor or be secured to a mooring buoy, within the area, without the express permission of the Harbour Master.

The Temporary Exclusion Zone will be in place to facilitate the safe conduct of a firework and water screen display (“Medway In Flames”). Six barges will be positioned in the following locations:

  • 51° 24.22´ N 000° 31.82´ E
  • 51° 24.38´ N 000° 31.88´ E
  • 51° 24.06´ N 000° 31.72´ E
  • 51° 24.08´ N 000° 31.59´ E
  • 51° 24.20´ N 000° 31.64´ E
  • 51° 24.32´ N 000° 31.68´ E

Pontoons will run between the barges positioned on the west side of the river. Medway VTS will broadcast the start and completion of the exclusion zone on VHF 74. Mariners are reminded that no vessel shall navigate at a speed above 6 knots through the water Westwards of Folly Point.

Aerial video of River Medway

Beautiful aerial video of the Medway, Upnor, Chatham, Rochester and the Historic Dockyard. Well done MERRA, whoever you are!

Battle of Chatham / Medway in Flames – Latest Update

The Dutch are well underway with the registration of the 200 or so yachts and ships coming to the Medway for the historic event. The really good news is that the bulk of the Dutch visitors will be split into two fleets.

Fleet 1, consisting of; tall ships, including the HNLMS Urania, the brigs; Merganster and Aphrodite; many yachts from  the Royal Maas Yacht Club from Rotterdam, and; historic steam and motor vessels, will gather at Queenborough on Wednesday. 7 June 2017 and sail, in company, up the Medway, on the morning of Thursday, 8 June 2017, with the Dutch royal prince taking the salute at Upnor castle. Fleet 1 will leave the Medway on 12 / 13 June 2017.

Fleet 2, up to 90 yachts, largely from the Dutch Offshore Sailing Club, will gather at Stangate Creek and sail up the Medway on 14 June 2017, leaving on 18 June 2017.

Many of the historic ships will be open to the public as well as the visiting Dutch and British naval vessel, which will be berthed in Chatham Docks, Basin 2.

The event grand finale takes place on Saturday, 17 June 2017. The day includes entertainment on the river; a parade of sail with Dutch and local yachts and ships, including a modern steam vessel and many of the Fleet 2 yachts. The day culminates with the ‘Medway in Flames’, a son-et-lumiere and firework display with Upnor Castle as the backdrop, with magnificent views from MYC.

The Medway and Swale Boating Association (MSBA) and member clubs and marinas, including Medway YC and  Upnor SC, are providing moorings for our  Dutch visitors and arranging river activities.

Our Medway and Upnor clubs are working together to provide breakfast and evening meal galley facilities, and; to arrange Hog Roast evenings with a sea shanty band, at MYC, on Saturday 10 June and Friday 16 June 2017. There will also be a ‘Pub Night’ meal,  served from the counter, with Upnor SC running a Quiz, on Thursday 15 June.

Hoo Ness YC, together with Medway Cruising Club and Segas SC are providing moorings and hospitality for a small fleet of ‘Gaffers’ from Holland and the east coast.

Websites providing further information can be found at www.deruyter.org and www.visitmedway.org

Brian Corbett, MSBA Chairman

Don’t miss Deadman’s Island on TV, Mon 30 Jan

Deadman’s Island will be featured on BBC1 South East’s Inside Out on Monday 30 Jan at 7.30pm. The island near Queenborough contains many graves of those who died on the prison hulks and quarantined ships in Stangate Creek.

View trailer

Historic Tug Festival Cancelled

The Queenborough Harbour Trust regrets that the Historic Tug Festival that was to take place this weekend, 25/26 June, has had to be cancelled.

Why is Gosport Ferry in Stangate Creek?

Gosport FerryIt has nothing to do with the old Gosport ferry terminal pontoons being at Queenborough Harbour. According to Wikipedia, the ‘Portsmouth Queen’, built in 1966, was sold to Absolute Charters and left Gosport in February to start a new life on the River Thames in London. She will be renamed ‘London Queen’.

Nick Ardley book launch, Sat 23 July

Join the author at Baggins Book Bazaar, High St, Rochester, Sat 23 July, 1300-1500. Call Baggins on 01634 811651 to reserve a copy.Nick Ardley book launch poster

VIC 96 steams to Ostend

VIC96VIC 96, a WW2 Admiralty “puffer” was seen today under steam leaving Stangate Creek for Ramsgate, en route for the Ostend At Anchor classic boat event before going to Vlissingen. This year’s  trip will commemorate the voyage of the Defiance in May 1816, by Captain William Wager, who steamed from Margate to the Netherlands with the aim of introducing steam ships to Holland and Germany.

Bronze Age Boat discovered at Oare Creek

Bronze Age Boat

Archaeologist Dr Paul Wilkinson was contacted by Dan Tester, who owns a boatyard at Oare Creek, believing it to be an Anglo Saxon boat. However, Dr Wilkinson revealed that the boat is an important find dating from the Bronze Age (2,500 – 800BC) and is “rare as hen’s teeth”. . Read more at Kent Online