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Marina fees during lockdown

MoodySabre

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24 Oct 2006
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Bradwell and Leigh-on-Sea
How much money do marina owners make,? Bearing in mind that they will be suffering from a pretty large drop in income from visitors and berth holders who winter store elsewhere and are unable to take up a regular berth.
How many marinas can afford to make refunds and give discounts without going bust?
Marinas make a fortune.
 

MoodySabre

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Care to point us in the direction of some recent sets of accounts to back that up?
Accounts won't give you the detail. Do the maths. My privately owned marina - 300 boats at £3000 plus storage of boats from moorings nearby that's £1m, haulouts, launches and work extra. Say 10 - 12 staff, plant costs, leccy, rates. etc. say £600k.
 

bdh198

Active member
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28 Sep 2011
Messages
235
Location
Solent
I have a winter berth in Port Solent and a swinging mooring in the harbour paid for from 1st April - but like you we are now locked in. Have Premier got a policy on charges for this or do you get the impression its down to individual negotiation? I do get the point they have to keep the business going and like you I am looking for a 'fair deal'.
Speak to them. You can still get physical access to boats in Port Solent despite what the signs on the gates say. Although the lock is only in operation for “essential commercial services and emergency services” it is nevertheless ‘in operation’. They claim to be closing the marina and putting the restrictions in place to comply with the spirit of the government’s regulations to prevent the spread of the virus. However, those regulations allow you to leave you house if you have a “reasonable excuse”. It is quite arguable that needing it to leave your house for a short trip to take your boat from a marina to a swing mooring because your contract in the marina has come to an end would be a “reasonable excuse” under the regulations. It would be unreasonable of the marina to force you to enter into a new contract after the 1st April if you are quite able to move your boat in accordance with the regulations - it should also be remembered that you will be extremely unlikely to come into contact with any other person thereby staying within the spirit of the regulations because you aren’t risking spreading the virus by your actions.

If you aren’t prepared to enter into a contract with Premier after the 1st April (and incur paying twice for mooring) then unless they let you stay for free you will have to move. If you have to move the choice is outside of your control and you would have a “reasonable excuse“ under the regulations. If you are not in breach of the regulations then Premier will be acting in the spirit of the regulations to let you enter the marina and passage through the lock.

Of course, they may offer you a reduced mooring rate, or may even offer to move your boat for you.
 

Blue Sunray

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20 Jul 2015
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2,075
Accounts won't give you the detail. Do the maths. My privately owned marina - 300 boats at £3000 plus storage of boats from moorings nearby that's £1m, haulouts, launches and work extra. Say 10 - 12 staff, plant costs, leccy, rates. etc. say £600k.
So that would be a no then.
 

longjohnsilver

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Joined
30 May 2001
Messages
16,768
Speak to them. You can still get physical access to boats in Port Solent despite what the signs on the gates say. Although the lock is only in operation for “essential commercial services and emergency services” it is nevertheless ‘in operation’. They claim to be closing the marina and putting the restrictions in place to comply with the spirit of the government’s regulations to prevent the spread of the virus. However, those regulations allow you to leave you house if you have a “reasonable excuse”. It is quite arguable that needing it to leave your house for a short trip to take your boat from a marina to a swing mooring because your contract in the marina has come to an end would be a “reasonable excuse” under the regulations. It would be unreasonable of the marina to force you to enter into a new contract after the 1st April if you are quite able to move your boat in accordance with the regulations - it should also be remembered that you will be extremely unlikely to come into contact with any other person thereby staying within the spirit of the regulations because you aren’t risking spreading the virus by your actions.

If you aren’t prepared to enter into a contract with Premier after the 1st April (and incur paying twice for mooring) then unless they let you stay for free you will have to move. If you have to move the choice is outside of your control and you would have a “reasonable excuse“ under the regulations. If you are not in breach of the regulations then Premier will be acting in the spirit of the regulations to let you enter the marina and passage through the lock.

Of course, they may offer you a reduced mooring rate, or may even offer to move your boat for you.
This "reasonable excuse" thing in the law is a new one to me. I think you might want to check before using it.
 

bdh198

Active member
Joined
28 Sep 2011
Messages
235
Location
Solent
This "reasonable excuse" thing in the law is a new one to me. I think you might want to check before using it.
Unfortunately there is a lot of misunderstanding of what the law actually says as opposed to what the ‘government advice’ is. The law is what we are obliged to follow and what gives the police their enforcement powers. The government advice is just that, ‘advice’. It is not enforceable and we are not obliged to follow it (although in the current situation there is probably a powerful moral argument that we should).

The law can be found here: The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020.

For the purpose of leaving your home and going to your boat it is Regulation 6 that is important (See attachment). This is the regulation that restricts freedom movement. You will see that this regulation is worded:

6(1) During the emergency period, no person may leave the place where they are living without a reasonable excuse.

The regulation then goes onto list 13 “reasonable excuses” (including the often quoted 6(2)(b) concerning exercise) but importantly this list is not exhaustive. This means other reasons for leaving you home can be considered a reasonable excuse depending on the circumstances. Obviously, what is considered “reasonable” as an excuse is open to interpretation, but in the circumstances I have described above (particularly where risk of transmission of the virus is low) I think most courts would find that to be “reasonable”.

The law in Wales, Scotland and N.Ireland is slightly different, but in each of those jurisdictions the exception for being able to leave your home with a “reasonable excuse” remains.
 

Attachments

Resolution

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Joined
16 Feb 2006
Messages
3,134
You are perhaps unaware of the limited information given in the accounts of a private company no Profit and Loss information or details of owners dividends. Just a summary of the Balance Sheet at the year end. You can get that info for £1 from Companies House.
You cold instead just google for the accounts of MDL, which I guess is the UK’s largest marina group. If I recall correctly, Turnover for the last year was about £35. Million, Operating profit about £3 million, and Pre-tax profit £500,000.
I cannot speak for today’s market, but 20 years ago when I was more involved the marina sector was notable not so much for the size of its profits as for the steadiness, lack of volatility, in its profits, and consequently the high yield from dividends.
 

Sadlerfin

Member
Joined
28 Sep 2018
Messages
52
Location
Hayling Island
Speak to them. You can still get physical access to boats in Port Solent despite what the signs on the gates say. Although the lock is only in operation for “essential commercial services and emergency services” it is nevertheless ‘in operation’. They claim to be closing the marina and putting the restrictions in place to comply with the spirit of the government’s regulations to prevent the spread of the virus. However, those regulations allow you to leave you house if you have a “reasonable excuse”. It is quite arguable that needing it to leave your house for a short trip to take your boat from a marina to a swing mooring because your contract in the marina has come to an end would be a “reasonable excuse” under the regulations. It would be unreasonable of the marina to force you to enter into a new contract after the 1st April if you are quite able to move your boat in accordance with the regulations - it should also be remembered that you will be extremely unlikely to come into contact with any other person thereby staying within the spirit of the regulations because you aren’t risking spreading the virus by your actions.

If you aren’t prepared to enter into a contract with Premier after the 1st April (and incur paying twice for mooring) then unless they let you stay for free you will have to move. If you have to move the choice is outside of your control and you would have a “reasonable excuse“ under the regulations. If you are not in breach of the regulations then Premier will be acting in the spirit of the regulations to let you enter the marina and passage through the lock.

Of course, they may offer you a reduced mooring rate, or may even offer to move your boat for you.
I've spoken to Port Solent where my boat is also locked in I'm told the key fob's are disabled so no access to the pontoons unless you are one of the few who live aboard and have no other home. Finally the lock is shut!!
Stay at home is Stay at home.....
 

FlowerPower

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South

Little Grebe

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From the Needles to the Nab, from Cowes to St Cath
I've spoken to Port Solent where my boat is also locked in I'm told the key fob's are disabled so no access to the pontoons unless you are one of the few who live aboard and have no other home. Finally the lock is shut!!
Stay at home is Stay at home.....
Could be 'interesting' if a boat sinks at the marina which has prevented the owner carrying out the inspections required by the insurance policy and consequently the insurers decline to pay out.

I appreciate the marina will try and carry out checks on the boats in their care but my experience is they do miss things.
 

Sadlerfin

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28 Sep 2018
Messages
52
Location
Hayling Island
Could be 'interesting' if a boat sinks at the marina which has prevented the owner carrying out the inspections required by the insurance policy and consequently the insurers decline to pay out.

I appreciate the marina will try and carry out checks on the boats in their care but my experience is they do miss things.
Well this is the point I posted this earlier, but I went back in the water 3 days before the lock down and had water coming in from the sail drive seal which was replaced over the winter I was due back on board last Tuesday to tighten the bolts as per engineers instructions.
This is when I was told fobs were deactivated. To be fair marina staff have been back on board checking it and sending me pictures and it appears to have stabilised. If i had damage I would expect my insurance company to consider I had taken all actions within my power to mitigate their loss.
As is all is well, other than the fact i've paid over £5k to moor a boat i cannot use.
But I'm well and others are not.........
 

bdh198

Active member
Joined
28 Sep 2011
Messages
235
Location
Solent
Could be 'interesting' if a boat sinks at the marina which has prevented the owner carrying out the inspections required by the insurance policy and consequently the insurers decline to pay out.

I appreciate the marina will try and carry out checks on the boats in their care but my experience is they do miss things.
It would also be interesting if someone was ‘locked in’ and then faced a marina insisting they pay in full for the time they are locked in despite being able to move their boat in compliance with the law (regulations) and in the spirit of the government’s guidance.

I would hope marinas would take a pragmatic approach and come to a sensible agreement to what would be a reasonable reduction in their mooring fees in the circumstances. I would be surprised if the marina could enforce the payment in full because you wouldn’t have freely entered into a contract with the marina and so long as there was a workable alternative that is in compliance with the law and in the spirit of the guidance (i.e. moving it safely to an alternative mooring) their decision to keep you ‘locked in’ would have been entirely within their control and at their discretion.

As Sadlerfin says, Premier (at Port Solent) appear to be helpful and understanding and I trust they wouldn’t be too ruthless at trying to insist on payment in full in those circumstances.
 

Little Grebe

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9 Jun 2009
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From the Needles to the Nab, from Cowes to St Cath
The potential snag for those either still on the hard-standing or within a marina where egress can be control - such as those with a lock - if that they may insist on payment beforehand.

As I have written either earlier on this or on another thread if hard standing charges continue to accrue then I will need to renegotiate or cancel my marina contract.
 

Little Grebe

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Joined
9 Jun 2009
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From the Needles to the Nab, from Cowes to St Cath
In another thread a link was given in respect of those businesses required by law in the UK to shut, this included caravan sites but no mention was made of marinas or boatyards. I assume had they intended to include marinas in the list then would have done so.
I have just read that the BMF have recommended to their members that marinas follow the legislation in respect of caravan sites and therefore close down.
 

longjohnsilver

Well-known member
Joined
30 May 2001
Messages
16,768
Unfortunately there is a lot of misunderstanding of what the law actually says as opposed to what the ‘government advice’ is. The law is what we are obliged to follow and what gives the police their enforcement powers. The government advice is just that, ‘advice’. It is not enforceable and we are not obliged to follow it (although in the current situation there is probably a powerful moral argument that we should).

The law can be found here: The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020.

For the purpose of leaving your home and going to your boat it is Regulation 6 that is important (See attachment). This is the regulation that restricts freedom movement. You will see that this regulation is worded:

6(1) During the emergency period, no person may leave the place where they are living without a reasonable excuse.

The regulation then goes onto list 13 “reasonable excuses” (including the often quoted 6(2)(b) concerning exercise) but importantly this list is not exhaustive. This means other reasons for leaving you home can be considered a reasonable excuse depending on the circumstances. Obviously, what is considered “reasonable” as an excuse is open to interpretation, but in the circumstances I have described above (particularly where risk of transmission of the virus is low) I think most courts would find that to be “reasonable”.

The law in Wales, Scotland and N.Ireland is slightly different, but in each of those jurisdictions the exception for being able to leave your home with a “reasonable excuse” remains.
Thanks, I was wrong.
 

jordanbasset

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Joined
31 Dec 2007
Messages
28,920
Location
UK, Greece and Spain
I posted this elsewhere but relevant to this thread I think
More stupidity or was it a reasonable excuse, although as he is a Jet skier I suspect most on here will say stupidity, be interesting to see the reaction if he had gone for a sail
Man who drove to Poole Harbour and rode jet ski for an hour is fined
A DRIVER has been fined after driving to Poole Harbour and heading out on his jet ski for an hour.
The man was stopped by Dorset Police’s No Excuse team while his wife and children watched on from within the car.
When directed to stop, the jet skier did but then reportedly wouldn’t listen to advice given.
He was fined £60 which would be reduced to £30 if paid within 14 days.
 
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