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JimC

Decisions for 2012

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We've just had our first week ever on the Broads and thoroughly enjoyed it, so much so that we'd like to do it again next year but at Whitsun instead of summer so we'd like some help from you regulars please. This year we only did the northern section of the Broads so next year we plan to do the south.

Firstly, what's the weather generally like, will the boat be warm enough at night? Also is there enough to keep us occupied for a whole week in the southern half.

The other little problem is which boatyard to go for, this year we used Richardson's at Stalham and their service was excellent, we could use their Acle yard which would involve the Gt. Yarmouth bridges/Breydon Water crossing or use a boatyard on the southern half which would negate the latter, problem is we don't know any southern boatyards on a par with Richardson's so what would anyone recommend.

Jim

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hi Jim,

In my opinion, the southern half is quieter than the north. But I would still hire from Ricos at Stalham.

there are plenty of places down south, BUT you need to experience Breydon, so hire from north and pass over it twice.

The good thing about down south is not many saily things, the bad thing is a lot of bling sea going things (only kidding sailies and salties).

As to the boat being cold, it depends on the boats heating, we have hired out of season and I would reccomend taking a nice warm duvet to put on the bed.

It is quieter at this time and you will get the full enjoyment of the broads, with the wildlife.

For keeping you occupied in the southern half, it depends on what you like to do. you have Oulton Broad, Waveney River Centre, Beccles, Rockland, Brundal, loddon, and plenty of pubs on the main river.

About booking early, if you realy want a boat, then book it so you are not dissapointed, but no need to rush as it is a bit quieter for the boatyards.

Have a great time

cheersbar

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Hi Jim

Glad to hear that you are coming back for more! Plenty to do and see on the Southern rivers and usually less congested and easier to moor. Some great places to visit including Oulton Broad, Beccles, Loddon and you can even sail into the centre of Norwich. Other little gems include Somerleyton and Geldeston with the famous Locks Inn. Also many great places to stop along the Yare. Easily fill a week.

As for yards you will have certainly been spoilt for service with Richardson’s. However if going South, I would certainly recommend Swancraft at Brundall. I’ve been with them every year (often twice) since 2004. Boats are immaculate and superbly maintained. Friendly and helpful service from a family run yard. Easy to get to as well, by road or rail.

Just my suggestion for starters! Good luck!

cheersbar

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Firstly-You know the traditional Whitsun bank holiday is a week later for the double Jubilee bank holiday week?

We have just done a week starting from Brundall and stayed south. We went:

Sat night-Cantley

Sun night-Waveny River Centre

Mon night-Beccles after visiting Geldston

Tue-Waveny River Centre

Wed-Reedham-visited Petits during the day

Thur-Oulton Broad-Spent the afternoon in Lowerstoft

Fri-Brundall.

Our schedule was around children so it may not suit you!

Not sure what style or price of boat you are after but Swancraft get good reviews.

I dont think it will be cold-possibly a but chilly at night. We are actuall onboard that week but up norf!

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Hi Jim

Glad to hear you enjoyed yourselves so much you're coming back again :Stinky

You could still start at Richardsons, or as you say at Horizon Craft. When we go South we would normally start at Richardsons and have never really found that we have to do lots of hours each day to get everywhere.

If you do decide to start down south then I guess the same scenario to up north applies - each fleet has it's own merits and the type of boat wanted & cost might influence who you pick, but Silverline are my own favourite down south, their boats always look immaculate, have a nice understated but smart appearance & colour scheme and they are nice people to deal with the times I have called in, and I also like the river very much around Brundall and the run up to Norwich.

Booking early is always a good plan as you have a better chance of getting what you want, never more important if you do choose one of the smaller fleets as mentioned here who have a lot less boats and so with their regular customers and fewer boats they will end up with booking options getting closed off more quickly than the big boys

Whatever you book have a great time

Dan

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Hi Jim

Glad to hear that you are coming back for more! Plenty to do and see on the Southern rivers and usually less congested and easier to moor. Some great places to visit including Oulton Broad, Beccles, Loddon and you can even sail into the centre of Norwich. Other little gems include Somerleyton and Geldeston with the famous Locks Inn. Also many great places to stop along the Yare. Easily fill a week.

As for yards you will have certainly been spoilt for service with Richardson’s. However if going South, I would certainly recommend Swancraft at Brundall. I’ve been with them every year (often twice) since 2004. Boats are immaculate and superbly maintained. Friendly and helpful service from a family run yard. Easy to get to as well, by road or rail.

Just my suggestion for starters! Good luck!

cheersbar

Jim, Hi

Quite so, Howard!

And in the early part of the year the transit from Stalham or Acle can take up two days each way, which leaves precious little time for the South.

We moor at the WRC and next week our itinerary will be as follows:

Oulton Broad (lots of good pubs and close to Lowestoft)

Reedham (Village Staithe or Reedham Ferry)

Loddon

Brundall/Surlingham (Coldham Hall/Surlingham Ferry)

Thorpe

Norwich (2 nights but not Thurs-Sat!)

Back via Surlingham/Brundall (depending on which we did up river)

Of course there's lots of other stopovers which I've missed but the above will keep us happy for up to 10 days! :clap:clap:clap

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It very much depends on how many hours cruising you like to do. I love the south and north, but I've never done a south only week because that would probably be a bit too leisurely for me. I like doing 4-5 hours cruising a day and that means you can see the whole south in 3-4 days. Plus I love doing the GY Breydon thing! An Acle start would give you the best of both worlds and give you the option of coming back North for a while if you wish.

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In the last few years I have been "Down South" with a single level Bermuda (Eden Bridge out of Bridgecraft at Acle) and also done two short breaks on Spitfire and Hurricane out of Alphacraft at Brundall (and on one of those we actually went back "Up North" anyway)

I would say that the South, i.e. south of Stacey Arms on the Bure, tends to involve higher reed beds etc

and there is not a lot to see in places from a conventional single level cruiser.

Having something with a higher view-point does, in my opinion, give you a better view, but it can make getting through Yarmouth just that little bit more difficult.

Picking your booked period to match good tidal heights and convenient tide times can allow you to work around the additional air-draft though.

Also don't forget that there are three main rivers "Down South", a trip up the Chet is well worth doing.

Another thing to remember is that the tidal range, and tidal currents are a lot higher "Down South", nothing to worry about but something to remember.

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Hi again folks and thanks to you all for your valued advice, we've spent the last week looking at every boatyard over and over again, and we fancy either the Alpha Swift or Silver Mystique, although Jacqui prefers the Alpha Swift, also decided to go in the summer again if we can get the boat we want. Has anyone any experience of either boat? Are we able to book direct with Alpha or will we have to go through Hoseason's?

Thanks also to Geoff for that excellent story. I'm also looking forward to seeing the Beauchamp Arms again, I last stayed there 50 years ago when they had a caravan site behind the hotel.

Jim

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