River Medway – Oil Spills

As members are aware there have been a couple oil spills spotted on the surface of the River Medway between Gillingham and Chatham Marinas. Unfortunately, when Peel Ports have despatched the appropriately equipped vessel to investigate the surface-based oil slicks have disappeared.

Can we please ask that if anyone spots an oil spillage that you email the information, and ideally any photos, directly to the Peel Ports Operations Team or notify Peel Ports via Channel 74 .

If you can also forward details including date, time and location of the incident and any photos to secretary@msba.org.uk we will start to maintain a log to see if there are any patterns to these incidents.

The MSBA would like to thank all river users you for your assistance. 

Any questions please let me know.  Thank you 

Kind regards

Peter Norris, Fellow ABYA


Medway and Swale Boating Association

 E: chairman@msba.org.uk   W: www.msba.org.uk

Reminders from Medway VTS (VHF channel 74)

Race officers, as well as phoning Medway VTS on 0151 949 6650 to advise on their race schedule on the day of racing, should also listen out on Channel 74 to pick up information relating to inbound and outbound vessels or seaplanes.

If a seaplane is due to land in Sharfleet or Stangate creeks Medway VTS will broadcast details on VHF channel 74,  of what time the seaplane is due to land or take off. Commercial vessels as listed below will also report to Medway VTS on VHF channel 74 when passing inbound or outbound at the following reporting points, Medway buoy, Spile buoy, Mid Swatch buoy, No 12 buoy, Darnett Ness Beacon, No 32 buoy, Chatham Ness beacon or when berthed or anchored.

Reporting Vessel” means every vessel which is required by the Ports General Directions to report its position, intentions, or movements, specifically:
(a)   vessels having a Gross Tonnage of more than 50 tonnes.
(b)   vessels whose Length Overall is more than 40 metres.
(c)   Passenger Vessels.
(d)   vessels carrying Dangerous Goods; and
(e)   vessels which are engaged in Towing Operations.

VHF 74 reminder

Peel Ports have asked us to remind boaters that once they have slipped their mooring or left their marina they should be monitoring Medway VTS on VHF channel 74 whilst operating in the Medway and Swale Estuaries. There have been a couple of very near misses in the past few weeks that could have been avoided if motorboat and yacht owners had been monitoring channel 74.

Reckless jet skiers to face prison and unlimited fines after law change

The UK is introducing new legislation to crack down on the dangerous misuse of watercraft such as jet skis, with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) being granted more powers to prosecute perpetrators of accidents.

Read more …

2023 Official Sheerness and Chatham Tide Tables

Peel Ports have published official 2023 tide tables for Sheerness and Chatham online. You can access them via the links on our Tides, Weather & Cams page

The same page also has real-time tides and wind for Tripod, Garrison Point, Chatham and Strood. The page serves as a portal to the many webcams and weather stations hosted at clubs along the Medway.

The excellent Peel Ports tide table booklet for 2023 should now be available from all good local chandlers, marinas and clubs. You will also get a copy with your conservancy licence when you renew. It contains much useful information about safely navigating the tidal Medway and Swale.

Don’t forget to add an hour for British Summer Time when appropriate.