Chairman’s Address

Jonathan Chairman’s Update Summer 2017


Well, as I am writing this we have just had a few exceptional days of very hot weather.  Once again they are saying that this will be the best Summer for years – and now it’s gone colder!!  I have to say I will believe it if I see it!!

I wonder if it is the weather that makes things bright or is it our life experiences?  Maybe any of you who have bought a new boat recently, or been on a cruise with us or others, could share your experiences with me – and the Association – with a line or two and maybe a photograph?  E mail me if you can.  We are really keen to hear from you!!

In this update :- Speeding up the bridge lifts, Summer Party, AGM, Old Town Bridge, Cruising, Poole Boat Show and Facebook, Newsletter and Web Site.

Speeding up the bridge lifts

In order to reduce the time the bridge is up we have been asked by the Council to encourage boaters to pass quickly through the bridge spans.  Some ideas to help this (some may be controversial) would be :-

  • Boats that can pass under the closed bridge avoid bridge lift times or pass the queue waiting for the lift (but still only going under the opening spans!)
  • All boats can pass under the bridge when the lights show three reds and a yellow – watch this useful video produced by MDL
  • When safe go under/through the bridge when it is lifting
  • Keep well closed up when in the line
  • Yachts opt to hold back to allow those without a high air draft pass through the lifting bridge
  • Remain parallel with the edge of the channel when holding station (i.e. rather than holding station across the channel)
  • Pass through the bridge spans side by side (requested by bridge operators but I am not sure it is wise?  Maybe OK with two smaller boats?)

We are approaching the Bridges Operating Board for clarification and better guidance as there seems to be some confusion over bridge protocol.

Summer Party

This year the party at the marina will be on the 22th July.  Tickets will again be only £6.  This represents amazing value and includes a Hog Roast with a vegetarian alternative.  The Ray Foster Soul Band is performing and there will be a raffle and auction too.  A special surprise visitor will greet guests!

There will be a marquee in case of unkind weather, hopefully some ice cream and a close up/table top magician.

All proceeds this year go to Julia’s House.

There has been a delay on getting tickets, but posters will be up soon and tickets will be on sale from the office and the Quay Shop.  Buy your tickets early – don’t miss out.


The March AGM included a presentation from Lyn Parsons from Dorset Police Marine Section.  She emphasised the importance of looking for and reporting crime and being the eyes and ears of the Police.  They are very short of resource and without being tasked on marine matters they would be redeployed so to ensure that they are available when needed keep your eyes peeled!

A discussion took place over the new electronic payment and booking system which we have introduced.  Whilst it doesn’t suit everybody the meeting agreed it was, on balance, the right decision to continue with it – but be prepared to develop it based on experience.

Once again the Yacht Club hosted us and we were pleased to see a number of interested members there.

Poole Old Town Bridge Maintenance

Well, we are 9 months into the planned maintenance of the Poole Town Bridge.  It should have been completed by now but it has been delayed due to challenging conditions.  September completion would seem to be the revised date for finishing the work and we have been lobbying for hourly lifts of the Twin Sails bridge during school holidays at least.

This has been achieved with the exception of no lifts at 0730 hrs, 1330 hrs and 1730 hrs to facilitate traffic flow at peak times.


Don’t forget this is the main reason we exist – cruising in company.  The raison d’etre  is that you can get the reassurance of going on a cruise, maybe that bit further away, with the support and camaraderie of others in the association.  Going out and, of course, returning with other members of the cruise.

This has again been a bumper year for cruising with most cruises pretty much fully booked.  As ever we are dependent on weather and we have lost cruises to adverse conditions but safety is paramount.

The remaining cruises are planned for Jersey and Guernsey and also St Quay Portreaux and rounding off the year, as usual, with a late Summer cruise to Weymouth.

Check out our Cruise Programme page on the web site.  Although many cruises are at capacity people do drop out so it is often worth getting on the waiting list.  We operate on a strict ‘first come first served’ basis to ensure fairness.

Poole Boat Show

I am sure many of you, like me, would have gone along to the Poole Boat Show on the Quay this year.  I chatted to the Cobbs team there and they had a successful two days taking a number of enquiries.  They also had another popular practical challenge this year with a bit of a queue when I was there.  It was a simulator getting people to moor a boat.  On the leader board I noticed many of the Cobb’s team’s initials – how many hundred goes?  They once again had ‘pole’ position alongside Poole Quay Boat Haven.

Among the highlights were demonstrations from the RNLI and the PHC.  There were also tall ships, sport boats, on-the-water demonstrations, live music and fireworks.  People could also look at and purchase a host of chandlery products, clothing and watersports accessories.  There seemed to be a much larger display of boats in the marina and also stalls which was great to see.  When I went there were large crowds on the boats too.

This event was, of course, planned to coincide with to European Maritime Day which Poole was hosting in 2017.  In my opinion the event was much improved on last year.

Facebook, Newsletter & Web Site

Coming along nicely I would say.  I think we are around 180 likes now!  People are also commenting on and liking some of our posts which is great for us!!

We use Facebook for things that need ‘instant’ contact such as bridge closures as well as the social interest ‘stuff’ so I hope it will be useful to you.

I would be interested to hear what you think about our Facebook idea – or maybe you would like to ‘like us’?

We also have the web site as a resource for marine services and other information (make sure you mention the web site when you visit them) and a monthly newsletter.

Go to the web site for updates, events, LNTMs that are relevant and much, much more – take a look.

Are we doing what you want?

Finally your committee is keen to be sure we are doing what you want so we need your feedback.  Could I ask that you let us know if we are doing a good job, a bad job or if want us to do something differently.

I wish you safe passage.

Jonathan Saunders