Berthing Advice

PeteCooper

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Due to some changes in my brother's personal situation, he is hoping to return to sailing after a long absence, and is currently trying to work out what the best options are for him. On the practical sailing front he has much experience and plenty of willing assistance in brushing up rusty skills. However, one factor that is exercising him is finding a suitable location.

He is considering something around the 10m mark, to put the
factors below in context. Fin keel ideally, but would consider bilge
keels; all boats are a compromise and that is one issue that he is not
fanatical about.

Can anyone advise on sailing locations that meet the following
specifications:

1) Must be reasonably accessible from Cambridge, Cambridgeshire. That
means less than (say) 2 hours drive. The closer the better; this will
be a major factor. He will not use air travel routinely for a leisure
activity.
2) Must be useable at all states of the tide (that cuts out
Wells and the other North Norfolk locations).
3) Preferably not too far away from the open sea; ideally some
interesting destinations within a day sail distance.
4) Ideally not too strong a tidal stream in the main channel.
5) Of course, cost is a factor all other things being equal!

He is specifically not interested in racing; he is a cruiser who may try
and get a bit more out of the boat if travelling in the same direction as another boat, but setting out to race does not interest him. So, the presence or absence of a racing club will not be a factor.

Please note that at this stage he is identifying possibilities, and I'd
like to ensure that he is not missing any. This is a long term project;
He doesn't expect to be buying before next year.

The ideal would be a wormhole from Cambridge to the West Coast of
Scotland! But, realistically he is looking at the East Coast. I'll relay any answers back to him. Thanks very much Pete.
 

MoodySabre

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If your brother wants all tides access then it's got to be somewhere on the Orwell. I think that most places, Ipswich, Levington (Suffolk Yacht Harbour), Wolverston and Shotley are all within 2 hours and are not restricted. Plenty of day sailing (Deben, Walton. Stour, Orwell) and down to Brightlingsea, Bradwell or Burnham for short overnighters.

Can't help on the costs front - most publish their tariffs on websites. Don't know about swinging moorings on the Orwell but plenty here will.
 

Phoenix of Hamble

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Yep, The Orwell.... if he can avoid rush hour, its only a hour or less to the main Orwell Marinas....

He can expect to pay a little under £3k per annum for a 10m boat for a full service marina, or quite a bit less for a swinging mooring marina combination...

To meet his other requirements, the best two would be Shotley and SYH... both within 3nm of wide open sea, both all tide and both with plenty of options for day sails....

Ipswich (Haven and Neptune) and Woolverstone would also be fine, but a little bit further from open sea...
 

Neil_M

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If he's looking at swinging moorings as well as marinas it would be worth considering the Deben - both Felixstowe Ferry & Waldringfield yards very reasonable (much cheaper than Orwell marinas) with deep water moorings accessible at all tide states and no commercial traffic to dodge.
 

pennycar9

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Have a look at Lowestoft, there are a couple of new marinas recently opened and another one being Planned. Our berth is only a quarter of an hour from the open sea and our Annual fee for 15 meters is under £2500.The river is tidal but with very little flow and the port is accessable at all times.Walk in the Park!!!!!!!!
 

snowleopard

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Grafham water would seem to meet most of the criteria!

Wherever you sail from Cambridge is going to be a long hike.

While I was there I put the sailing on hold and did the self-propelled bit (rowing and punting).
 

Heigaro

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Had a season at Titchmarsh near Walton-on-the-Naze a few years ago. It wasn't desperately expensive then and was most enjoyable. Good for east coast - up and down. /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif
 

beancounter

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Another vote for the Orwell. It's where we are, and we live in Cambridge. As Neil (Morgana) has said, it's about an hour's drive to the marinas in Ipswich, add another 10 -15 minutes for those further down the Orwell.
 

Sixpence

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Hi Pete , I have to admit that I'm not the best informed on this but I think you're right in not looking at the Wash and around the north Norfolk coast because of the tidal access issue , I'd be inclined to follow the advice of someone that knows what they're talking about , and young Morgana is the one I'd be talking to if I were you
 

Phoenix of Hamble

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Why Thankyou Dave....

But there are plenty of others on here that know the area very well indeed!... in fact much better than I.....

Agree though.... Norfolk is fairly specialised in as much as it tends to have bilge keel/lifting keel boats prevalent of around 22 to 28 feet, and isn't ideal for a fin keel.... far better to head a bit further south to Suffolk or even Essex...
 

Sixpence

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No offence intended to any of the others , I just prefer it if I know someone who does know what they're talking about , which many on here do , but idiots like me need guidance and it helps if I know who best to listen to , and this is starting to sound like waffle to get out of upsetting others that know what they're talking about so I'll shut up before I dig any deeper /forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif
 

SQUIRRELS

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If he fancies digging a bigger wormhole we'll help! However, as we have experience of both west coast scotland and east coast sailing there is quite simply no comparision IMHO, however (HWMBO sailed on east coast for over 10 years) if he really doesn't fancy digging that wormhole or using the motorways, a lot of the east coast comes down to preference and cost, better the access higher the cost and vice-versa, but also for that size of boat, getting a berth. Bradwell, where we sailed before heading north is nice, but you don't have access like we're used to and berths were very limited for that size. Things may have changed in a couple of seasons re. berth availability, but his best bet is to drive around (not on bank holidays I would hasten to add), and take a look from Orwell to the Crouch and see wants available and what he likes.

Oh yes and one further point, the other big difference is on the east coast, well Maldon anyway, you need to wash your boat before you go out in it - Essex mud!

If you're out on the water this w/end, have a good one. Les
 

SQUIRRELS

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The journey from house to boat took just over an hour, but with those roads, it felt much longer. So, yes, good point start at the Orwell! Mind u the 410 miles or so to the Clyde isn't a walk in the park either - something to look forward to later /forums/images/graemlins/ooo.gif
 

AntarcticPilot

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First, I have now registered for myself. I am Pete's brother, and he made the initial posting on my behalf. I am already a regular on the uk.rec.sailing newsgroup, and asked the same question there.

Thanks for all the responses. It is looking very much as if the Essex rivers are the best location for me. Titchmarsh Marina intrigues me - I grew up reading the Arthur Ransome books, so being based on "Secret Water" has a certain resonance! However, practically Ipswich and the Felixstowe region may be more accessible - straight down the A14 (as long as it isn't blocked both ways as it was today). Of course, when the crunch comes, availability of berths will probably be the final deciding factor.
 
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