Recommend me somewhere to keep a smallish boat

fifer

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12 Apr 2013
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There's a distinct possibility I'll be moving to Cambridge for work next summer, and this probably would entail a boat move from N. Wales to East Anglia.

I've been looking at likely locations to keep a 27ft long keeler - mostly oriented around clubs and independent swinging mooring providers to keep costs down. Ideally I'd like a cheap swinging summer mooring and then a cheap winter pontoon berth.

So far I've found Pin Mill & RHYC on the Orwell, Brightlingsea Harbour and (possibly) Royal Corinthian YC at Burnham on Crouch (mostly because a distant relative designed the clubhouse!) for summer berths.

The Orwell is attractive as its the shortest drive from Cambridge and there's plenty of countryside to walk dogs. Most of the sailing would be day cruises up the river and along the coast but I'd like to get over the channel to the continent a couple of times a year.

Titchmarsh marina looks inexpensive as a winter berth.

Any other particular possibilities I might have missed? Is there any mileage in going North of Cambridge to the Wash? And how constrained is the Deben as a base?
 

PeterWright

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Hi Fifer,

In my view the Wash ports are over constrained by tide to be useful to you and I think your focus on the Orwell is wise to keep your motoring from Cambridge to a reasonable trip. Titchmarsh is a longer road journey but, perhaps, not too bad.

Pin Mill SC and Orwell YC would be the favoured clubs for me on the Orwell. Some of the Orwell Marinas offer summer moorings / winter pontoon or hard standing deals - other than Woolverstone (MDL) there's not a lot of price difference between the Orwell marinas.

The Deben is a beautiful river, too many moorings nowadays, in my view, but I've sailed it for over 60 years. Access for your long keeler at anything over half tide. I suspect (but haven't looked for a long time) the best value moorings are at Felixstowe Ferry, just inside the entrance and easily accessed by road from the A14.

Don't tell anyone else, but this is God's own cruising country, with plenty of different options for trips to the Netherlands and/or the Baltic.

Peter.
 

peterf

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Given your brief I would offer another solution which is Tollesbury for winter and West Mersea for summer?
 

Kukri

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RHYC, but it’s dead men’s shoes for the marina.

I’m going to differ from @PeterWright about the Deben; it takes a long time to get from the A12 to Bawdsey, and I did eventually after thirty years!) find the tidal constraints imposed by the bar very restrictive.
 
Last edited:

xyachtdave

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RHYC, but it’s dead men’s shoes for the marina.
Well, I squeezed into pair of dead man shoes last year, a marina berth 2 days after joining!

But I'm pretty sure that was a one off OP so don't bank on it...possibly a mistake was made in my case?

Lovely club, have had this year off boating due to our house move and subsequent DIY etc, might be back. next year...although I'm not expecting a marina berth.

:)
 

fifer

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12 Apr 2013
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146
Hi Fifer,

In my view the Wash ports are over constrained by tide to be useful to you and I think your focus on the Orwell is wise to keep your motoring from Cambridge to a reasonable trip. Titchmarsh is a longer road journey but, perhaps, not too bad.

Pin Mill SC and Orwell YC would be the favoured clubs for me on the Orwell. Some of the Orwell Marinas offer summer moorings / winter pontoon or hard standing deals - other than Woolverstone (MDL) there's not a lot of price difference between the Orwell marinas.

The Deben is a beautiful river, too many moorings nowadays, in my view, but I've sailed it for over 60 years. Access for your long keeler at anything over half tide. I suspect (but haven't looked for a long time) the best value moorings are at Felixstowe Ferry, just inside the entrance and easily accessed by road from the A14.

Don't tell anyone else, but this is God's own cruising country, with plenty of different options for trips to the Netherlands and/or the Baltic.

Peter.
Thanks, I had a very brief look at Orwell YC but it seems quite far up river leading to a long 'commute' to the sea. Maybe thats just part of the fun though? I'll have a look at Felixstowe ferry as well. Does the boat yard provide moorings as well as lay/service them?

It definitely looks like a great place to be based. And I'm looking forward to being much closer to the boat than I currently am.
 

fifer

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12 Apr 2013
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146
Given your brief I would offer another solution which is Tollesbury for winter and West Mersea for summer?
Thanks, this option seems a little more expensive than some of the alternatives but would be a great location.
 

fifer

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12 Apr 2013
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Well, I squeezed into pair of dead man shoes last year, a marina berth 2 days after joining!

But I'm pretty sure that was a one off OP so don't bank on it...possibly a mistake was made in my case?

Lovely club, have had this year off boating due to our house move and subsequent DIY etc, might be back. next year...although I'm not expecting a marina berth.

:)
Any chance you could
Well, I squeezed into pair of dead man shoes last year, a marina berth 2 days after joining!

But I'm pretty sure that was a one off OP so don't bank on it...possibly a mistake was made in my case?

Lovely club, have had this year off boating due to our house move and subsequent DIY etc, might be back. next year...although I'm not expecting a marina berth.

:)
I'll have to follow up and talk to RHYC. The swinging moorings are reasonably priced but the club membership fees on top are a bit steep! Similar to the Royal Corinthian at B-on-C tbh.
 

Daydream believer

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Stone moorings
Cheap deep water moorings available. Moorings being recovered for this term & will be relaid for the next 3 year cycle circa March next year so you would be starting at a good time. The Blackwater is an excellent river with easy access to a wider horizon . You would need to get a launching trailer for the boat, but that is not a big deal. Some of our members have them & can advise. It does give safe storage in gales as well.
If you need more info use the contact form
 

WF36

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RHYC,Suffolk
Well, I squeezed into pair of dead man shoes last year, a marina berth 2 days after joining!

But I'm pretty sure that was a one off OP so don't bank on it...possibly a mistake was made in my case?

Lovely club, have had this year off boating due to our house move and subsequent DIY etc, might be back. next year...although I'm not expecting a marina berth.

:)
Quite a few didn't launch last year due to COVID woes. In fact I think you were opposite me!
 

fredrussell

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Debbages (Orwell) worth a look for winter pontoon berth. It’s a bit rough and ready compared to other more glamorous local marinas, but it’s way cheaper than any of the others.
 

Kukri

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Moorings on the Orwell… Oddly enough the swinging moorings nearest the RHYC are owned by Woolverstone Marina and the club deep moorings are further away. Pin Mill moorings are nice but the time needed to get a dinghy up and down the hard is a factor.
 

johnalison

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The Walton Channel would seem another obvious place, either from a boatyard or the WFYC. It might be more of a drive but it's quite an attractive one.
 

PetiteFleur

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Definitely try Felixstowe Ferry Boatyard, who supply and service moorings. Then get on the list for a personal mooring which is cheaper and FFBY supply and service the mooring. Much easier to get to than Bawdsey. I am biased as my mooring is there.
 

kacecar

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The OP has looked at the Crouch and Burnham so perhaps worth mentioning North Fambridge, around five and a half miles further up the river (and about five mins closer to Cambridge by car). Far less exposed than the moorings at Burnham and with a mooring package, from Fambridge Yacht Haven, that fits the OP's requirement (summer on a swinging mooring, winter in marina).
 

xyachtdave

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I’ve been looking around the Orwell for a Marina berth for next year, nowhere has bitten my hand off yet, it appears to be waiting list territory everywhere and ‘We’ll get back to you’.

Hopefully when the contacts come up for renewal they’ll be a shuffling of the pack and I can squeeze in somewhere.

Who knows… lightening may strike twice and another pontoon spot at RHYC!

I think the very buoyant used boat market that’s driven by ‘staycations’ has had an effect, though I’d imagine in a year or two a lot of these will be for sale again when reality bites and a combination of the costs/mediocre weather highlights the reality of UK sailing which doesn’t always look like it does on YouTube.
 

Chae_73

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I had no difficulty in getting a winter berth at SYH.

We intend to go back to the swinging mooring at Felixstowe Ferry for next season, but I am already becoming quite fond of SYH and can foresee a time when we might want to berth here all year round.
 

sailorman

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Here or there
There's a distinct possibility I'll be moving to Cambridge for work next summer, and this probably would entail a boat move from N. Wales to East Anglia.

I've been looking at likely locations to keep a 27ft long keeler - mostly oriented around clubs and independent swinging mooring providers to keep costs down. Ideally I'd like a cheap swinging summer mooring and then a cheap winter pontoon berth.

So far I've found Pin Mill & RHYC on the Orwell, Brightlingsea Harbour and (possibly) Royal Corinthian YC at Burnham on Crouch (mostly because a distant relative designed the clubhouse!) for summer berths.

The Orwell is attractive as its the shortest drive from Cambridge and there's plenty of countryside to walk dogs. Most of the sailing would be day cruises up the river and along the coast but I'd like to get over the channel to the continent a couple of times a year.

Titchmarsh marina looks inexpensive as a winter berth.

Any other particular possibilities I might have missed? Is there any mileage in going North of Cambridge to the Wash? And how constrained is the Deben as a base?
Fwlixstowe fsrey. Club and 2 pubs close by plus goo road access from cambridge. Say 80 minute trip
 
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