Why so few leisure boats.....

boatone

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...in the heart of London.

Probably a dumb question but........... I regularly work just off the Strand and take my packed lunch on Waterloo bridge. I see very few leisure boats on this stretch.

Why is that?

Nowhere to stop really and a little early to see boats heading between Teddington and St Kats/Limehouse or on passage downriver to the estuary, or returning. the tidal Thames is really not very hospitable to leisure craft except for passing through.

Need to take your sardines up to Tedders or Kingston!
 

Brayman

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Nowhere to stop really and a little early to see boats heading between Teddington and St Kats/Limehouse or on passage downriver to the estuary, or returning. the tidal Thames is really not very hospitable to leisure craft except for passing through.

Need to take your sardines up to Tedders or Kingston!

...also there is a fairly small window, tidewise, in which to catch them. If you see any they will tend to be lockfulls and traverse pretty quickly. If you keep a watch on the time of high tide you will soon work out the best days to see them.
 

TrueBlue

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Being a bit more antagonistic than the other "regulars" above, part of the problem is that the PLA (Port of London Authority) makes it as difficult as possible for leisure craft to use the river.

It's a commercial port - not that there's much commerce anymore, and they would rather not have any private boats on "their water". That is evidenced by requiring vessels to carry VHF radios and being distinctly unhelpful over mooring availability.

It's such a shame as the occasional trip through the City is absolutely fabulous.

Completely in contrast to the non tidal bit from teddington upwards where there's load of information from the friendly lockkeepers.....
 

oldgit

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It is probably the most "exciting" bit of the river for leisure users.
The word exciting in this instance means being thrown around by trip boats,police boats,fire boats,fast ferries and assorted other speed merchants from Bray Marina .Although to the onlooker on the shore it is all peace and quiet,constantly being thrown around is not my wifes favorite occupation and normally that stretch of river is to be got over ASAP.
Different matter early morning and late at night when it can be magic.
DSCN3624.jpg
 
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oldgit

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Taken during an early morning start.



Who you kidding that obviously lunchtime and you probably held the camera lens near the exhaust of those smoky old oil burners you call engines to block the light.
Corse my pictures have the time on.
 

boatone

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Who you kidding that obviously lunchtime and you probably held the camera lens near the exhaust of those smoky old oil burners you call engines to block the light.
Corse my pictures have the time on.

So does his - you just can't see it unless you know where to look.

Says Panasonic FZ18 - taken at 06:10 on 2/1/2009 - shutter speed 1/8 second

could be a load of b*lls if the camera date and time wasn't set correctly but knowing Unit 18 ...........

Flash didn't do much for Canary Wharf but it spoilt the second shot :D
 

apollo

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So does his - you just can't see it unless you know where to look.

Says Panasonic FZ18 - taken at 06:10 on 2/1/2009 - shutter speed 1/8 second

could be a load of b*lls if the camera date and time wasn't set correctly but knowing Unit 18 ...........

Flash didn't do much for Canary Wharf but it spoilt the second shot :D

At least he TOOK SOME.....not like some people i could mention....
 

Dave_Seager

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Being a bit more antagonistic than the other "regulars" above, part of the problem is that the PLA (Port of London Authority) makes it as difficult as possible for leisure craft to use the river.

I don't really see how you can blame the PLA. It is a busy, commercial river so it is not practical to moor on the river due to the wash from the traffic. Since it is tidal, access to off-river moorings is restricted to periods around high water. What would yo have them change?
 

CJL

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I don't really see how you can blame the PLA. It is a busy, commercial river so it is not practical to moor on the river due to the wash from the traffic. Since it is tidal, access to off-river moorings is restricted to periods around high water. What would yo have them change?

I would have thought the PLA could offer some moorings that are a bit more suitable for us.

Try picking up or dropping off somebody on a "public" pier....you'll be threatened with a £200 charge and told your not allowed to use it unless your freeboard is greater than 1m.

Very leisure friendly.

Chris
 

oldgit

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I don't really see how you can blame the PLA. It is a busy, commercial river so it is not practical to moor on the river due to the wash from the traffic. Since it is tidal, access to off-river moorings is restricted to periods around high water. What would yo have them change?

The only commercial traffic are the rubbish barges,all the rest are just boats tearing about between A and B at high speed for no really good reason ?
 

TrueBlue

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I don't really see how you can blame the PLA. It is a busy, commercial river so it is not practical to moor on the river due to the wash from the traffic. Since it is tidal, access to off-river moorings is restricted to periods around high water. What would yo have them change?

  • They are unhelpful with access to buoys that they own.
  • They could act as a repository for information as the EA do on the civilised bit.
  • They place unreasonable restrictions on some craft wishing to transit between BW and EA waters by requiring the use of VHF radios.
  • Their office staff are unhelpful.

For me the issue is that the Public's view of the River is the tidal bit through London which, apart from the trip boats has little traffic and appears devoid of "life".
Looking at the fuss which folks make about the non-tidal part, methinks that Londoners (and MPs looking out from the Palace of Westminster) wonder whether "our" River is worth spending money on.
 

boatone

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Looking at the fuss which folks make about the non-tidal part, methinks that Londoners (and MPs looking out from the Palace of Westminster) wonder whether "our" River is worth spending money on.

If I were writing a newspaper headline about the issue I thought:

"The River Thames - National Asset or Public Disgrace?"

has quite a nice ring to it.

Maybe MBM could make good use of it? What say you, Richard?

Methinks we need to mobilise the lockies wives again ......
 

oldgit

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Always a vague feeling that leisure boats are regarded as a bit of a nusiance and therefore not to be encouraged on the tidal Thames.
However the only real contact with the powers that be up there is at the barrier and they have always been most polite and helpful to me.
Did get told off once for cutting corners going past Gravesend by one of the PLA boats.
 

PaulGooch

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We visited one weekend, last September and were shocked at the lack of leisure boats. Apart from two small sailing boats near Canvey, we didn't see a single private boat between Southend and the London Eye. We've seen more private traffic on the River Nene.

We are also very shocked at the abysmal amenities, lack of mooring, poor marina access and lack of re-fuelling facilities. The sight seeing was great and we plan to come back this Easter though.

The only contact we had with "authorities" was VHF contact with VTS at the barrier. The staff were polite, but very "business like".
 

oldgit

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Visit to VTS at Gravesend

After our recent visit to Medway VTS at Sheerness the RCC visited Gravesend today.Nice chat to the staff and they assure us that the VTS is there for ALL boaters who require their services.
Excellent tea and biscuits + freebies.
Did you know they have found a WW11 bomber in the river and are going to raise it,hopefully intact .
All the teccy hydrographic stuff they use is military spec which gives some impressive images and they have 17 radar scanners along the river which also gives interesting amounts of detail.
Neat computor locating system involving clicking a mouse on a radar screen image and CCTV cameras will find you within seconds.
Ps They have cameras out on the windpower arrays :)
 
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Andrew_Fanner

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After our recent visit to Medway VTS at Sheerness the RCC visited Gravesend today.Nice chat to the staff and they assure us that the VTS is there for ALL boaters who require their services.
Excellent tea and biscuits + freebies.
Did you know they have found a WW11 bomber in the river and are going to raise it,hopefully intact .
All the teccy hydrographic stuff they use is military spec which gives some impressive images and they have 17 radar scanners along the river which also gives interesting amounts of detail.
Neat computor locating system involving clicking a mouse on a radar screen image and CCTV cameras will find you within seconds.
Ps They have cameras out on the windpower arrays :)

Bomber sounds interesting, what is it?
 
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