Peel Ports Completes Trial of Autonomous Unmanned Survey Vessel

Peel Ports is the first Port group in the UK to take delivery of an autonomous unmanned survey vessel, which completed its first successful trial at Crosby Marine Lake, north of Liverpool. Developed by L3 Harris and featuring pioneering technology, the 4.5m vessel, named Fitzroy, weighs 1 ton and carries multibeam sonar equipment capable of high resolution seafloor mapping down to 100m. Fitzroy will soon be deployed on the Medway.

More information…

A new name for River Medway

Chart Courtesy of Navionics.

In a surprise move to end confusion with other rivers of the same name, Peel Ports have announced that from 1 April the River Medway will be called River London Medway. A spokesman for the company, now named Peel Ports London Medway, explained that as they legally own the river from Allington to Sheerness this is within their powers and follows an extensive consultation with stakeholders in Liverpool. Another well-placed insider revealed that the “aspirational” change of name is expected to bring new business to the port and increase the value of local property.

Conservancy Licences now available online

All craft except open unpowered dinghies under 5.1 metres in length based on the tidal Medway and Swale are required to purchase an annual conservancy licence. Many clubs offer these licences which they obtain from Peel Ports at a discount.

Alternatively you can now buy a licence online at:
https://peel-port.myshopify.com/

To assist with the roll-out of this new payment method Peel Ports have have written some guidance to help us through the application process and also addressed some frequently asked questions. The links below will take you to those two documents.
https://www.peelports.com/media/6288/leisure-craft-conservancy-disc-application-faq.pdf
https://www.peelports.com/media/6289/step-by-step-guide-to-applying-for-a-licence.pdf

If you have any queries regarding leisure craft licence applications please contact Beth Cuddington on 01795 596525 beth.cuddington@peelports.com

New signage for PWCs

This is a sample of one of the new signs designed in partnership with the Personal Watercraft Partnership (PWP) and local authorities. The signs will be set up at known launching sites for jet skis (PWCs). Most PWC users are responsible boaters but an irresponsible minority spoil it for everyone else and will be liable to prosecution. Peel Ports will increase the number of patrols using a harbour launch or RIB, including holidays, weekends, and during heatwaves. The patrol personnel will be equipped with body cams.

Speed limits

This chart shows the zones where there are speed limits, yellow for 6 knots and red for 8 knots. The purple zone from Cuxton to Wouldham is where members of the Kent Boat and Ski club have exclusive permission to water ski.

New boats for Peel Ports

At the Peel Ports Leisure Users Forum, held virtually on 25 February, our harbour authority announced several new vessels.

Waterwitch “Gannet”

This brand new all-electric (zero emissions) vessel is purpose-built to scoop up floating debris, a ton at a time. This week, after trials at Chatham, “Gannet” will be deployed above Aylesford, where there are lots of floating logs and other hazardous debris to clear.

ROV “Fitzroy”

April 2021 will see the first Medway trial of the group’s remotely operated survey craft ‘Fitzroy’. Should be fun!

And there’s more! These two new handy-looking work boats are due to arrive later this year. Suggestions for names please to AllMedwayMarineManagers@peelports.com

Beware of Wreck on Segas SC moorings

Peel Ports have been notified of a sunken vessel on the Segas Sailing Club moorings at the following approximate position: 51°24.017’N. 000° 33.842’E . This is roughly opposite Gillingham Marina. The wreck is believed to be a red motor launch/cruiser, 22-23ft long, which is occasionally visible at low water is now marked with an unlit, yellow ‘pellet’ buoy denoted “Wreck”. When practicable an attempt to recover the vessel will be made and once complete a cancellation to this notice will be promulgated. Until the obstruction is removed all mariners should keep clear of the area. Peel Ports NtoM 18/2021 refers.

Pirate ship wreck now has marker beacons

photo Richard Murr

Peel Ports have arranged for two red beacons to be placed beside the wreck of the infamous “pirate ship” Revenge in Faversham Creek.

photo Michael Wilcox

Unfortunately one of the beacons is positioned just the wrong side of the channel and we have suggested that it should be moved. If you are passing the wreck please try not to knock the beacons.

Peel Ports gets tough on dangerous boaters

Peel Ports have issued the following statement: “On the 26th of April 2020 a water craft collided with another vessel causing it to sink and causing serious injury to one of the occupants. Police attended the scene and the defendant was breathalysed and found to have a levels of alcohol in his system exceeding the amount permissible for driving a vehicle on the road, resulting in his arrest. The injured party maintained that the defendant had been performing ‘doughnut’ turns around her vessel but had lost control of his vessel causing it to collide with hers.

“The Port of Sheerness Ltd brought prosecution proceedings against the defendant pursuant to the Port Byelaws alleging that the defendant had failed to navigate his vessel with the requisite level of care and that he had been in charge of his vessel whilst unfit by reason of drink, contrary to byelaws 22 and 33 respectively. The defendant was summoned to appear before magistrates sitting at Medway on the 10th of December 2020. At this hearing the defendant pleaded guilty to both allegations and was ordered to pay fines, compensation and costs totalling £3,950.”

UPDATE: The “water craft” referred to in the Peel Ports Notice was a small motor cruiser, not a PWC (jet ski). The other vessel was a dinghy.