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  1. 21 points
    Let's start a thread about all the wonderful things the Broads has to offer, the happy times we've all experienced, the help and support we all offer each other because we have the Broads and boating in our blood, two things we all definitely have in common Romantic times like when Jay and I sat on the bow of the boat late at night cuddled under a duvet having a glass of wine, watching the stars and listening to the water The helpful people like my Dad who once helped an elderly couple (novices) who were terrified, he climbed aboard with permission and took them back to the boat yard for extra tuition. I'm sure we've all helped someone out at some point or been on the receiving end of a helpful hand It's not all crashes, bumps and drunks Don't forget all the friendly waves as boats pass each other whether private, hire or even one of those ruddy flappy things The gorgeous pubs you can visit along the way for a few drinks or a bite to eat and not forgetting the absolutely beautiful scenery along the way too. It's summer time, here's to happy boating everyone Jay and I are kayaking soon, god help the lot of you Grace
  2. 18 points
    Finally, at last, and those that know will tell you there were times we thought this would never happen. Then again it's all part of the ritual that is wooden boat ownership. Just got to finish the 200 or so little jobs that crave my attention, like fit the galley
  3. 16 points
    Well it has been an exciting time. I have bought an Alphacraft 29 Sports bridge, re named her Legacy because that's how I could afford her. A friend and I are still getting to grips with a thorough clean through and a bit of varnishing as well as making her dog safe. Chugged up and down a bit and practised mooring, peered at the engine checked the bilge pump and tried to look like I am an old hand! This Saturday another friend and I are on a hire boat, Sonnet 3 from Barnes. We decided to still have this holiday as Legacy isn't quite kitted out for a week yet, so hope to get some waves as we cruise by "the hand type not like storm Doris last year, very choppy"! I will do photos later in the year.
  4. 15 points
    Well, we arrived at Richardsons boatyard at 1pm on Friday 28th June via taxi from Norwich airport (Goldstar taxis, thankyou Robin). Swan Rapture was ready to go and Richardson's staff were super efficient. First impressions of the boat? She is a little frayed around the edges but well fitted out and very comfortable. I don't think i have ever had a more responsive helm. A joy to drive. First night at Ludham Bridge. A bit of a shaky first mooring but we made it ( with a bit of bow thrusters) then an evening at the Dog Inn. Saturday morning found us at Womack Staithe (we love that place) and then on to Ranworth for a special family occasion tomorrow. Evening meal at the Maltsters (steak and kidney suet pudding, or a well disguised mudweight). Now for an evening fish and a good red wine. So far the fishing has been high in quantity but a tad low in quality, apart from a huge eel which would have brought a pretty price gack home. I have my NBN stickers on my windows but my attempts to fly my New Zealand flag have come to nought. We are here for almost three weeks so give us a wave if you see us or say hello. So glad to be back. Chris.
  5. 14 points
    Although we moved our boat from Horning to our moorings at Brundall, when we spent a night on board due to the tide times through Yarmouth, we had been looking forward to this weekend with eager anticipation as itvwas to be our first proper weekend break. We set off from home shortly after 18:00 on Friday evening and arrived at our moorings about two and a half hours later, after a relatively easy journey. We'd collected a takeaway from the Chinese which was eaten before we unpacked the car and stowed our things on Norfolk Lady. Both of us had been up for work early that morning and it wasn't long before we went to bed, very tired, but very happy to be spending our first weekend on board. Saturday dawned and there was no rush to go anywhere. The immersion heater was on and once the water was heated, we showered and got ready before wandering down to the Co-Op for some essential supplies. Back at the yard, we topped up with water and set off on the start of our new adventure. It was quite overcast, but for once, it didn't seem to matter. We were on our boat! We headed for Reedham and I was quite surprised at how busy the river was. We found a gap near the Rangers hut to moor and eased into the space. The ranger came out to assist and we had a chat for a while as several large cruisers sped through. After lunch, we cast off again, with a mooring at Pyes Mill the intended destination. It was a pleasant cruise and we passed several craft heading the other way, so I was hopeful that there would be space for us. Sure enough, there was a space at the end furthest from Loddon basin, which suited us. Nice and quiet and grass for the dog to mooch around, too. We wandered in the village, over the bridge and through the field, coming out near The Kings Head, the outside of which seems to have been painted since our last visit. We needed a couple of bits from the Co-Op that I'd forgotten on my visit earlier, before returning to Norfolk Lady, past the church and through the lanes, back to our moorings. The wife did some sewing, I did a crossword or two and we idly whirled away the afternoon with a bottle of wine (each). As we sat in the aft cockpit, the sky cleared and left a glorious, sunny evening to enjoy. I cooked our meal, we watched tv for a while before retiring to bed. Owning our own boat was an ambition I'd held for almost 50 years. As time passed, the idea that it would be realised became more and more remote, however due to my wife's diligence, this has turned into reality. I cannot express how lucky I feel.
  6. 14 points
    Saturday 29th June On this holiday me, hubby Graham, eldest son Harry and dog Seren. Almost two years since we sailed Lustre’s sister-ship Lullaby (see holiday tales July 2017). We did miss sailing last year! We started off around 9am. Had a couple of traffic delays on the way, and also stopped off for coffee at Caxton Gibbet Costas. I had suggested to Graham that we could skip the coffee break and get to Norfolk quicker, so when Harry asked his Dad if we would be stopping off for coffee, he got the response ‘Well I am, but Mum isn’t’. A signal that I’m going to be well and truly teased this week. (More than usual, that is!) We didn’t get to Ludham until almost mid-day. Made a bee-line for Alfresco Tearooms, where we always get a good meal and it's handy that they allow dogs inside as it was too hot to leave Seren in the car. Just a sandwich lunch today, but up to their usual high standard. After lunch I popped into Throwers for some bread and salad ingredients and into the butchers for some BBQ meats and bacon. We got to Hunter’s Yard just after 1pm, (a little early). The reason we had booked Lustre this year was in response to Harry’s discovering that she had been fitted with an ‘electric quant’, i.e. an battery powered ‘Torqeedo’ engine. On our previous holidays with Hunter’s Yard boats we’ve had to quant (use a very long pole to push ourselves along with) when the wind has failed us. There's been quite a lot of controversy about fitting the Torqeedo engines to three of the boats. Some people view it as sacrilege and think Percy Hunter would have been turning in his grave. We thought it was a really good aid though. We had heard that some older sailors had regretfully stopped hiring from Hunter's Yard as they found the manual quanting was too difficult. Hopefully, this will mean that more people will hire these wonderful old boats. The Yard Foreman, Ian, showed us how to use the Torqeedo. I asked whether we should buy some cards for topping up the electric charge (I have some that we bought for our last holiday on a Ferry Marina boat but forgot to bring them with us), but Ian reassured us that they haven’t yet had a battery run-out over a week’s hire. This year we just dumped all out stuff on board without bothering to unpack and got on our way as quickly as possible as we wanted to make sure to get to Potter Heigham for low tide (forecast for 4.50pm). First though, we removed one of the mattresses from forward cabin and put Seren's doggy bed in its place. Whilst Harry and Graham were taking off the awning and readying the boat for setting-off I spotted a small white bird with black markings (possibly a Little Tern?) suddenly drop down into the water of the dyke and fly off with a fish in its beak. The electric quant came into use immediately to get to the area at the end of Hunter’s Yard to set sail, and even after that we used it a little to help us down Womack Dyke, given that a SW wind was blowing down the dyke. We mostly sailed up to and through Potter Heigham, though we did use the engine once or twice when bungalows/trees ‘stole’ our wind. Seren loves it when she's allowed on deck. Mast down, ready for the bridge passage. It was getting on for 4pm by now, and since we had the electric quant, we thought we would go through the bridge without waiting for the turn of the tide. First though, Graham wanted to pop to Latham’s to get a blanket as he’d forgotten to pack the fleece blankets that we usually use to cover furnishings. It wasn’t long before we got on our way again. Harry took us though the bridges on the engine. A lot easier (and quicker) than quanting though manually! Sails back up, we continued with a fair wind up the Thurne and through Candle Dyke. We had thought we’d moor at the Deep-Go-Dyke BA moorings, but they and the Whiteslee mooring were full. We managed to find a space on the Deep Dyke moorings though, near the entrance to Hickling Broad. I put some new potatoes on the boil and Graham fired up the BBQ. We had Ludham butcher’s minted lamb chops and their soy, garlic and ginger chicken skewers with the potatoes and salad for our dinner. Yum! The chicken was especially tasty. We sat with a beer or two enjoying the late evening sunshine until sundown. A beautiful warm and still evening. Can’t believe how lucky we are…the weather has turned so favourably for us, after a fairly rainy June. A few mozzies were starting to come out, so we put the awning up and lit the paraffin lamps as they tend to deter the mozzies. A few other mod-cons have been fitted to the boat since we last sailed with Hunter’s. Some battery lights, fitted to ceiling magnets, fire-alarm and CO alarm. Harry managed to set off the fire alarm by letting his paraffin lamp smoke. We settled down for the night around 10pm, just as the light was failing. Harry and Seren (both in the forward cabin) took a while to settle as there were several flies worrying them. A lot of banging went on for a while as Harry swatted the flies. Seren settled for the night.
  7. 14 points
    After a good nights sleep, I was awake early on Sunday morning. I’m usually up around 04:15 for work and it’s a hard habit to break, but I did manage to doze off and rolled out of bed around 06:00. The kettle went on and despite the forecast of a grey, cloudy day, I was greeted by the sight of the sun rising over the river to the stern of the boat. Camera in hand, I stepped onto the bank and took a few photos, before returning make a cuppa. The wife was stirring and she readied herself to take Harley (our Staffie) for a walk. It was too early to run the engine for hot water and with no shore power, the immersion was of little use, so I spent a few minutes sitting quietly, thinking about our journey to the position we found ourselves in now and how lucky we had been. I’m still not sure that I quite believe that Norfolk Lady is ours, although the bill for necessary work completed since the purchase was completed, has helped it to sink in! The wife returned with the dog and I cooked breakfast, grilled bacon, scrambled eggs and sautéed baby plum tomatoes. It went down a treat, too. By that time, it was well past 08:00, so I started the engine for hot water and when sufficiently heated, went for a shower. The wife followed as I finished and we were soon dressed and ready. There was no great rush to go anywhere and I had no real plans for the day, but the clouds had rolled in and the sky was grey and leaden. We waited for a while, but decided to set off for a steady cruise back to the yard and our moorings. We cast off sometime after 11:00 and chugged slowly back up The Chet, turning left onto The Yare at the junction. There was quite a bit of traffic on the rivers, both hired and private, together with a smattering of sailies, clearly making the most of the breezy conditions. I can’t remember when we arrived back at base, probably between 13:30 & 14:00. We had rolls for lunch and I set about starting to clean Norfolk Lady up. We’d been left some boat cleaning products to try by the proprietor of our home yard, including some shampoo, so armed with a newly acquired deck scrubbing brush and a bucket, I attacked the grubby decks and cabin roof and was amazed at how well they came up. I cannot say for sure how much difference the shampoo itself made, but I was well pleased with the results. Debbie (the wife), had packed up the bits and pieces we needed to take back home and loaded the car. We had a chat with one of the other owners at the yard, who have a boat similar to ours and chewed the fat with them for a while, before finally locking up Norfolk Lady at about 16:30 to visit Steve and Deb, who also recently completed the purchase of their boat, which is also moored in Brundall. Id booked a table at The Ferry House for dinner, so took our leave in time to drive to Surlingham, where we enjoyed another good meal at one of our favourite Broadland pubs, before making the journey home to Northampton. It was always a wrench at the end of a holiday leaving the area that both the wife and I have come to love over the years and now regard as our spiritual home but we’ll be back very soon for another weekend on our boat. It’s a feeling that I never believed I would enjoy, but now we are in this fortunate position, it’s one that I fully intend to make the most of.
  8. 13 points
    The tale of my recent trip aboard Goosander for a week. Saturday 6th July After a rather painless journey down from Leeds, I arrived at Goosander’s door around midday. I unloaded the car and relayed the contents to their new home for the next seven days. So suitcase, groceries, cool bag, drone, computer, kitchen sink – sorry not kitchen sink, left that in the car as Goosander already has one. The plan for the rest of the day was to fly the drone over Wroxham once the Faircraft boatyard had closed down (so around 6pm) and then go for a meal in the Kings Head. Just over a year ago, I tried the same thing but the drone stopped working and I had to abort the “flypast”. So around 4pm I drove back in to Wroxham and parked outside this little store called Roys. I had a walk around town, visited some of the boatyards whilst at the same time keeping an eye open for suitable launch sites. One of the recent forum subjects has been on the whereabouts of the new Barnes Brinkcraft apartments – The River Views on the opposite bank to the boatyard. With time to waste, I decided to look for them. Whilst doing so I realised the nearby car park would be an excellent launch site. So I walked back to the car to pick up the drone and returned hoping that there would not be lots of people about, as I prefer to be undisturbed. And lets face it, a drone coming down in the river won’t do much for my street cred. Anyway, I duly launched the aircraft (fed up of writing drone) and did a circle around Wroxham. The results follow. Towards the end of the flight, I was joined by a chap who had been watching and wanted to know costs etc. So I carefully returned the drone to base without mishap and then chatted for a while before retiring to the Kings Head for a celebratory meal. The Wroxham flight was a big deal for me as it had taken a year to get the right conditions again (long days so I could fly in good light after 6pm) so I was pleased to tick it off my list. I chose the Chicken and Mushroom Pie at the Kings Head, having had the same last October, and it was just as good. I left Wroxham around 8pm and decided to call in at the New Inn in Horning before returning to Goosander. The New inn had live music on, a trio called… Trio so I thought it would be interesting to see what they were like. They consisted of two chaps and a female lead singer. I had intended to take in just the first set, around an hour, but stayed on for more as they were really quite good. It was mostly middle of the road stuff, 70s to 90s, and not too loud. So I left around 10pm to return to the mooring. I should add that it had been raining for most of the day, only stopping around 5pm, so I was hoping for a better day tomorrow. Goosander is a syndicate boat, for those who don't know. This is the old Brister Boatyard site in Wroxham. We hired from them many times - they were always the preferred choice, until they closed around 15 years ago I think. It's amazing that nothing has been done with the site, save for tearing down the sheds. I guess it must be connected to planning permission, as this is prime apartment land! The drone shots of Wroxham
  9. 13 points
    Friday 5th July Mandy was reasonably pleased that with my planned depart time of 9am, the previous Friday we left at 6am to get to Cumbria, so on this trip there was no need to wrap herself up in a throw as she did the previous week. The car was loaded to bursting, and Lottie was quick to take her place on the back seat to ensure we didnt leave without her. (She is secured by the seat belt to her harness) The journey was pretty uneventful and we made excellent time until the single carriageway A143 held us up with HGV's and the odd tractor We still made it to Loddon by 11.30am, I had arranged with Fiona to pick the boat up a little earlier at 1.00pm, so obviously we were way too early. So a plan came to mind (actually this was always my intention but dont tell Mandy) 'We're too early darling' I said 'What do you want to do' she replied 'Well, Lottie needs a walk and we've never been to the White Horse', we could have some lunch there?' I like it when a plan comes together, although after 33 years of marriage I think she knew I planned this! Well, what a great pub the White Horse is, why haven't we used it before? Superb garden, very friendly landlady but the Landlord is a very bad man and cruelly exposed a weakness I have! I ordered a pint of Wherry or Southwold and a J2O for Mandy and got a bowl of water for Lottie, I went back to the bar and ordered a couple of baguettes. About 15 mins later the landlord bought our food to the table, looking at my glass he said 'you need another pint' it wasn't a question, what a mind reader, and he insisted on bringing it to the table! Later he came back to collect our plates 'Was everything ok with your food?' 'Would you like more drink?' I could have said no, but found myself saying 'yes please' Bad bad man! It was now about 1.10pm, and I was now sitting in the passenger seat, Mandy drove the last mile! Well I did do the previous 149! A couple of mins later we were parked on the lawn at Pacific Cruisers. Now, I cant heap enough praise on Richard Fiona and their team, I know they are a business (a business that I hope does very well) but they make you fell you are friends and are just borrowing a boat! Everything is handled so informally and friendly, nothing is too much trouble. This is our third consecutive hire with them and third on Dawn. I really cant imagine using anyone else! Mandy and Fiona 'fitted' Lottie with her life jacket, I was just the labourer and emptied the car Soon everything was loaded, Mandy managed to drop my fleece in the drink, (and I was the one that had alcohol) mind you it would soon be dry, not that I would! As envisaged, my experience with the Wrynose pass made the Chet a doddle, taking it slowly after about an hour we were soon cruising down The Yare My favourite pub on the broads is the Surlingham Ferry, I love the beer, the food the garden and Sonia and all her staff are really lovely, I'd booked a mooring so we didn't need to hurry to get there As I already said I hadn't used the White Horse at Chedgrave before, two other pubs we hadn't used was the Beauchamp and Coldham Hall. I wanted to correct this, as we approached The Beauchamp, it looked quiet, there were plenty of moorings, but no one was sitting outside, which I thought odd as it was a lovely sunny day, I quickly 'googled it' - it didn't open until 5pm, and as it was only about 2.30pm, ruled it out I know the owner feels that not getting planning permission on his caravan park is going to 'kill' his pub, but not opening until 5 on a Friday is hardly going to help, is it? So Coldham Hall it was then, and I was really pleased the Beauchamp was closed, Approaching Coldham Hall there was a mooring at the front, but .......... I know this shouldn't make any difference but there was a private boat moored just behind us as we came in, that first mooring of the year suddenly came with extra pressure. No need to worry, straight in no problems..... I'm back! A couple of 'mature gents' got up and took our ropes, which I thanked them, but we had it all under control. We had a chat with them once we got our drinks, they confessed to having been in the pub a fair time, and good luck to them! A couple of pints of Ghost Ship for me, Pimms and a tea for Mandy, Lottie had to stick to water, well someone has to be sober to stern moor at The Ferry House We decided to 'cut the corner' at Brundall and entered Bargate Broad, it was so peaceful we decided to mud weight for 30mins. I like the idea of mud weighting overnight but it's not possible with Lottie We arrived at The Ferry House about 5.30pm and saw the board reserving our mooring for the night. Second mooring of the hols and although Lottie was prepared to moor for me, I decided she should keep to her job of watching the ducks! Another good mooring, and again plenty of help with the ropes, although I'm not sure with the advice passed back to me from Mandy from someone on the bank to shut the engine off despite still being 6ft from the bank! We had a nice chat with a private boater to our side about dogs, Lottie is a rescue, and although we've had her for a while, she was mistreated and get easily spooked and can be unfriendly to strangers, once she know you she loves you to bits! I take her to work with me, she now loves everyone in my office, especially the girls in accounts who bring chicken in to feed her! Sorry cant remember your name or the boat you were on, I only remember we were both the same age a very young 62! We decided to have a couple of drinks, Mandy soft, me Humpty Dumpty (I think) Lottie just water We returned to the boat to freshen up, then back to the pub for dinner I cant remember what we had, but I'm sure it was good, Mandy had two glasses of wine, me a couple of beers and Lottie was still suck on the water Now this is where I had a little mishap, now I accept I had consumed a few beers, but it was over a long period and I had two meals, I was feeling good, and I'm used to drinking regularly I took Lottie for a fairly long walk, about 45 mins Although I've worked in and around London for 40 years I am a country boy at heart my dad was a farmer and I'm comfortable in the countryside and do a lot of walking with Lottie and dogs before her I've noticed recently more and more gates on footpaths are now 'self closing' obviously a necessity in these days because some people cant be bothered to close a gate behind them Well a set of circumstances that night lead to what could have been worse, as I approached the last gate before the pub I put Lottie on her extending lead, I opened the gate which has a concrete step on the pub side. Lottie got spooked by another dog barking, pulled on her lead, this made me loose my footing as I stumbled forward the gate closed and trapped my ankle between the bottom of the gate and the concrete step This wasn't just an ouch moment, my ankle was stuck and I couldn't reach the clasp on the gate, and guess what? I hadn't taken my phone with me, I always have my phone, I'm always berating Mandy for not taking a phone! So there I was stuck and doing my best not to embarrass myself my having to call 'help' so I sat there for a couple of mins, when for some reason I let go of Lottie's lead, the lead recoiled that spooked her and she ran off! I still dont know how I freed myself, you hear stories where under pressure people use natural adrenalin to preform great strengths, that may have been my moment, as the dog ran off I managed to reach up and open the gate, something I obviously tried to do several times with no success Lottie had come straight back to me at this point so we both got back to the boat unharmed, a few cuts and bruises for me! Mandy told me I was a silly old fool and that it was all my fault, and I couldn't argue Sorry for the ramble, later days were less eventful! To be continued
  10. 13 points
    Last weekend Broad Ambition got her first real outing since a bunch of work had been done during her bi-annual out of water works. Friday 21st June: Shiela and I would crew up on Friday, cruise to Wroxham in the evening and the following afternoon I was expecting 4 guests to arrive who would be staying onboard until Sunday afternoon, plus possibly 1 or 2 others who were coming for the day. Just as well Broad Ambition is 40ft long, because what actually turned out was including Shiela and I, we had 12 people onboard - 4 of whom were children. Firstly we left Stalham and I helmed, while Shiela did a through clean through - this meant every glass and mug got a wash, all surfaces wipe down, all berths and seating vacuumed - once se gets stuck in if you stand still long enough you will be dusted! Then she mad the beds, then she cleaned all the exterior windows and then she finally got around to sitting down - were passing Salhouse by then! The funny thing is I have not been on the rivers for a good while either, so being on Broad Ambition and not just out for a bit testing a new aerial, or making checks on things was nice. However there was that little issue that I had to get her under Wroxham Bridge and I have not done that for - hmm perhaps 8 or more months and as fate would have it we would be arriving at almost the top of the tide. As we were passing Barnes Brinkcraft I got the binoculars out and spied the height gauge - just on 6' 6" - this was going to be a tad tight. In fact I (and someone else I've since spoken to) now feel the height gauge at Wroxham is very much 'spot on' where for years before it was on the conservative side - a bit like Ludham Bridge's height gauge. Well we went under fine but I'd not want to be going under at what out safe minimum air draft is (6' 4") because I am pretty sure our mast would get crazed. We have a new one, and the 'tear drop' at the top is slightly longer, this causes it to lay slightly higher - just a tad - but let's just say be nice to keep it looking new for as long as possible. Once through the bridge (and hitting my head on one of the chains) it was fenders down and my Bowlady was off doing her things, straight into a very public stern mooring while people sat on their boats sipping wine and beers. Those on Gold Gem must have rolled their eyes when at gone 8:00pm we turn up. Still, we moored up flawlessly, shut down and having put the wheelhouse canopy up was straight off to the Kings Head for food. Now, I am not here to 'bash anywhere' but to have run out of clean wine glasses, and to have produce the food they did was very poor. The veg was the left overs from the carvery - minus being heated up. Long story short we ate half of the food, drunk our drinks and literally headed over to McDonalds. Back onboard we opened up the locker - Shiela's new love I introduced her to is Malibu and Coke, the issue is 'coconut flavored coke' can go down a little too easily lol. We had an early start the following day so it was off to bed pretyt early all things considered. Saturday 22nd June: We had guests coming from London who had never been further than away from the capital than Hatfield so getting them to change trains and get to a little station called Hoveton & Wroxham was not going to be a smooth process, especially when their connecting train broke down and they were sent onward from Norwich in a Taxi. We moved the boat back under Wroxham Bridge to the Hotel, this was a mistake on my part. I did it because I was anxious to be the 'correct side' of the bridge for our little tour we had planned and thought we could all meet in the Hotel, have a drink and introduce everyone and then move to the Boat. However by mid day, it was clear this was peak bridge shooting time and the Pilot had his work cut out. It also meant that everyone who were wanting to go under the bridge would arrive, find the Pilot collection mooring full and then expect their boat to stop and sit like they had stopped a car. The breeze gentle brought them alongside Broad Ambition - a few wise words from me got them on their way without incident, until a 42ft forward steer arrived. It had 5 or 6 chaps onboard, but they were all inside the boat and as they went to move forward it was a case of full throttle, left hand down a bit. The stern and the galvanized steel rubbing strake came right for our stern quarter, doing what you are not meant to, I fended off best I could with my right foot and though they squeezed our fender flat, thankfully the hard edge of the metal avoided our delicate wooden hull. Phew, I thought, where is everyone? Shiela arrives telling me there was a change of plan, we had 4 kids coming, and a couple who had only been together a short time and would be their first outing together with all their kids - oh and nobody had ever been on the Broads before.. Slowly they came, picnic items, booze, bluetooth speakers, cameras you name it - what a scene this was causing outside the Hotel. All aboard I calmed everyone down and spoke about safety and what to and not to do and let Shiela cast off and deal with the ropes and fenders while I spun Broad Ambition around and headed off to Salhouse. We past the big trips boats, numerous day boats who were all behaving themselves, even if they drove as if in a car on the left for a while until they figured why is everyone on the right hand side of the river..The suneshine was glorious, but we had a nice breeze so it was not too hot. We arrived at Salhouse, public stern mooring number 2 complete the kids went exploring in the 'forest', the girls sat on the grass and gossiped and drunk some Pimms and the men talked boats as I showed them the restoration book, and talked through all the upgrades and changes since that had been produced. It was a lovely time to be on the water. A couple of hours later we were back underway to Wroxham to drop our day trippers off - outside the Cafe were several hire boats stern moored, we were almost stern to when we were told we could not moor. Baffled I asked why - dropping off point is down there' came the reply, I said that was the Pilot's moorings, and the reply of "yes" came back. I asked again why we could not moor here - "Dropping off point is down there". Well we could have played this game all day, so I proffered money - ah now we might be able to moor. Simon, a chap I had only met hours before told the chap in no uncertain terms we were not going to negotiate to drop off 4 kids and two adults and we'd head down to the 'dropping off point' for free. So I did. Having dropped off the day trippers it was now 6 onboard and all adults - but not a bit quit - it was party time, though I was 'on duty' so declined in the dancing and drinking too much. Now where were we going to go now? Thurne, Acle? Acle there was bound to be a mooring somewhere - we headed off around 3:45pm from Wroxham. Arriving at Acle I was shocked to find everything taken - the moorings which have been improved along ther grass bank on the Pedro's side, the moorings on the opposite side and of course outside the Bridge Inn. We carried on for Stokesby. Upon arrival, it too was all full. Not good. We spun around and then I hear "Robin..Robin" and a couple on their Alpha 35 were asking if we wished to come alongside them? Oh what a generous offer. I came in against what was now a very fast running current and we tied up. I had never met them, but they had followed me on You Tube for years, and it was a chance to get to talk to me and Shiela. In more recent times I have had some rather unkind comments made among comments on You Tube and Facebook Groups. The amount of people I met and chatted to - and this couple and their kindness made me see what a small minority negative comments and people are, and what the Broads is really about is an open mind, being kind and helpful. The food at the Ferry Inn was not only good value, but first class. Even if there was some oddities like get your own cutlery and sauces, but the staff were great and we all had a lovely evening. We got back to Broad Ambition and the rest of the party went onboard to watch a DVD while I was collared again and spent ages chatting to Mal, a former National Express coach driver and his wife about everything boat..and life..Proper good folks they are. I was pooched and hit my sack, we had to be up and away before 6:30am the following morning as our neighbors were off over Breydon Water with three other boats to catch the early tide - if we were not gone we would be off to Yarmouth too lol. Sunday 23rd June: Another cracking morning, warm and sunny - we were up and underway before 7:00am and made for St. Bennets. When we arrived we got breakfast on the go, very posh it was too - smoked Salmon, toast, scrambled egg, fresh fruits and juices and I had to do nothing but enjoy. After we ate, it was off for a tour of the ruin's and we walked to the Cross. I never knew, or had seen before, the amount of coins - many clearly hammered into the cracks in the wood of the Cross. It was beautiful, and as ever so quiet here. Back onboard we took a slow cruise with everyone having their times on the helm - Mohamed who works for BA driving a tug - moving planes - was able to pick up the delicate art of boat steering as if he had done it all his life, his wife on the other hand had no idea what hand, eye and boat was doing so try as we might it was always a zig zag - the other ladies were as bad, but since Shiela is good and as I now say 'qualified helmsmadam' I cannot be sexist and say women cannot drive boats lol. We arrived at Wroxham in very jovial moods, and once again under the bridge. Dropping off our guests for them to explore Wroxham in their own time before they train, Shiela and I took Broad Ambition back under the bridge and headed for Stalham. It was strangely quiet onboard - but nice to be just us on the rivers and taking out turns at the helm. Back to the Wet Shed, clean through and off for home it all seemed to have gone so quickly.
  11. 12 points
    Sunday 30th June As usual on Broads holidays I woke really early at 5am, not long after dawn. Seren had been whining quietly since it started to get light, but as she didn’t sound distressed, I ignored her (getting her in training for sleeping later as the week progresses). Graham was sleeping soundly. There was quite a bit of ‘bow-slap’ as an early Westerly breeze had sprung up as forecast. Graham woke around 7am, but no sign of Harry getting up. It was another beautiful morning with a cloudless sky. We eventually woke Harry up after 8am with a cup of tea. We put two reefs in this morning, as the breeze seemed quite strong - we could see that the water at the end of Hickling Broad was pretty choppy. We started off by sailing across Hickling Broad until we were nearing the Sailing Club, then we turned back, sailed past the Deep Dyke moorings and made our way through Meadow Dyke, the wind being just right to take us though on sail. There was a fair wind on Horsey Mere, but not as strong as we had expected. We took out sails down on the far side of the Mere, using the electric quant to keep our bow to the wind and then motored into the Dyke, arriving late morning. Graham went off down the end of the dyke to check out where to pay for the mooring (£5 for an overnight mooring). However, it turns out that the guy that runs the Ross’ Wildlife Tours now takes the mooring fees. I asked him if he had space for two for an afternoon wildlife tour and booked for the 3.15pm tour, as I had won a free ticket for two for the tour from the Friends of Hunter’s Yard photo competition a couple of years ago (3rd prize). First though we had brunch (fried new potatoes, Ludham butcher’s smoked bacon and beans). We whiled away the afternoon sitting in the very warm sunshine until it was time for the Wildlife Trip. Graham made sure that Seren wasn’t getting too hot, he had brought a cloth and neck cloth with him which he dampened to help cool her down. Graham stayed with Seren whilst Harry and I took the trip. This took us across Horsey Mere, the guide (Ross?) explaining some of the history and techniques of thatching (use of sedge for the ridge of the roof and reeds on the main parts of the roof). We went down Meadow Dyke, spotting Norfolk Hawker Dragonflies and another brown Dragonfly whose name I forget. We also saw (briefly) a Swallowtail Butterfly zooming across the dyke on the strong breeze. Then into Heigham Sound to see a pair of Swans with cygnets, Avocets flying by, a Marsh Harrier and some Common Terns. On the return cruise back through Meadow Dyke the guide turned off the engine and drew our attention to the song of a Reed Warbler and a Sedge Warbler. We relaxed a bit more after our tour, before walking across the fields to the Nelson Head for an early dinner. As it was such a beautiful warm evening we sat outside to eat. Seren found a shady spot! Crab salad for me off their specials board. It was okay but I would have preferred to have had it with potato salad or coleslaw rather than hot new potatoes and side salad. It was a very small crab, the smallest I’ve seen, though plenty enough for my appetite. Hope the size is not due to overfishing! Annoyed on our return to the boat to find that my Kindle wouldn’t work. Ended up borrowing ‘Persuasion’ from Harry, who had brought three ‘real’ books with him. A re-read for me, but it is one of my favourite Jane Austin novels. Watched the sun setting over Horsey Mere, then turned in for the night. Nice to be able to use real loos! We were a bit bothered by flies again this evening, though not as badly as last night. No mozzies though, thankfully.
  12. 12 points
    Sunday morning see's us up and about by about 8,15 we get showered, and out chatting to the people who are moored in Pacific next to us, they're on Silver Reflection. Igo to pay for our overnight mooring, but Richard and Fiona are not there, so Karen and I walk into Loddon for breakfast at Rosie Lee's. Caroline is her usual cheerful and bubbly self and makes both a sizeable cheese topped toastie each, very moreish, but my waistline says no. We say our goodbye's and walk up to the Co. op for some shopping and find out we still have to go to work on Monday week, as our Thunder ball numbers didn't come up. Back aboard and our nice neighbours had already left, so we pay Richard and Fiona our mooring fee, fill up with water and get going. We keep the revs down as we're going down the Chet with the tide, and reach the Yare. We're still with the tide as we pass Reedham, but as we enter the new cut we slow down, as from here on, we're punching the tide, so it's throttle up. We turn up towards Beccles and decide on WRC so pull in and Moor, only to see our friendly neighbours from the night before, but they were only there for lunch and soon departed. It's clear WRC is under reconstruction, so the place looks a bit messy, and when we go to pay our mooring fee, we're shocked at being told it was £20 for overnight with hook up, time for plan B. We decide to leave and make for Beccles under broken clouds and a fresh breeze. We arrive at Beccles, and who do we moor next to, our friendly neighbours. We have a nice chat and Robbie (their skipper) thanked me for the advice about cruising through the bridge and enjoying that beautiful stretch of river, when in comes a flotilla of boats, all with rowdy youngsters, but to be fair, they quieten down after a while. Karen prepared a nice chicken salad, which we enjoy with the roof open and the sun shining, it doesn't get much better than this, we'll, not unless it involves 2 wheels anyway. We're now relaxing with roof open, Karen with a glass of wine, me with a glass of water, and will probably be in bed early again. Good night all.
  13. 11 points
    Hi all, Thank you for pointing this out. We already have CCTV coverage at our Yacht Stations which has proved useful so far in recording and following up on incidents on the river. Following the recent speeding vessel on the River Yare at Reedham, we felt it would be a sensible idea going forwards if we could install CCTV at Reedham. Tom
  14. 11 points
    When I was in my mid/late twenties I was rather over confident! After all I drove a bright blue Subaru Impreza which at the time was about the most hated car on the road! One summer afternoon I pulled into the supermarket, straight into the last child/parent space. Bingo! Before I had half of myself out of the car a mum with kids in the car had pulled up behind shouting and screaming, calling me things that no child should hear. I said nothing but kept eye contact with her during this torrent of verbal whilst getting my baby Daughter out of the back seat....
  15. 11 points
    The Pasta Amatriciana turned out very well and was all gobbled up, and very enjoyable it was too. I usually wash up as I go, and all that was left was the plates and glasses which Karen did. I got changed into some old clothes especially brought along for sweetcorn drowning a got my tackle out and got set up by Lightnings bow. Karen was watching things on YouTube when I called her to look at my monster Roach which must have weighed in at a massive 6-8............. oz. She was going to take a photo, but the poor little thing wriggled out of my hand and fell on the ground. I quickly picked him up and placed him back in the briny deep. I kept fishing for a couple of hours, and caught another three monsters, the the light faded. By this time the breeze had settled, and Langley dyke was flat calm and looked absolutely still and tranquil. I don't know what it is about this place, but for us, in the sun, with flat cam water, and the sight of a Marsh Harrier swooping low over the marshes, it's truly awesome, mind blowing even, but whatever it is, it's one of the most beautiful and relaxing places to be on the Broads. Maybe that explains why I love this little piece of Broadland paradise so much. It's been a fantastic day, not only cruising, but enjoying breakfast with friends, both old and new, making a friend from a stranger who we really hope to see again, enjoying a home cooked meal, and an evenings fishing. It couldn't get any better, but then, that's just another day on the Broads. Good night all.
  16. 11 points
    I've managed to retrieve some photos from the previous Mrs Nog so I thought I'd post a couple. Apologies about the quality as they are scanned from slides. First up is the superb Bridge Inn at Potter Heigham. Sadly burnt down in the early 80's I believe. Nothing remains of the original building although some tile work from the floors can still be seen in what is now a car park. Carol has some information on her web site and I think Ex Pilot provided some history as I recall but I'm not sure where it is. I think the blaze started due to a fire being lit in a fireplace which hadn't been used for a long time. The pub was pretty much destroyed although the remains were supported with scaffolding for a while. I also seem to think the insurance didn't cover the rebuilding costs. Such a shame, a lovely pub and a location to die for. Happy memories!
  17. 11 points
    Another lost pub is the Eagle at Neatishead. Well not strictly gone in a sense, as it's now a private house. It has been altered a fair bit but is still recognisable. A cracking little pub. I seem to recall it frequently won in the small pub category in a best pub competition which was run by Blakes.
  18. 10 points
    Hi all, We thought you would like some accurate information about the number and role of our Rangers: We have a single Ranger Team with 12 full-time Rangers year-round, 2 Winter Weekend Rangers and 6 Summer Seasonal Rangers all of whom are trained and capable of performing a multitude of tasks including both 'navigational' duties and 'conservation' duties (such as tree management and bankside clearance). We also have 40 active Volunteer Rangers who also receive a high level of training and are absolutely invaluable in providing support to our staff. In total, 60% of Ranger time is devoted to 'navigational' duties which is paid for from navigation income. Engaging with the public, providing advice and offering assistance to visitors where possible is a key part of the working remit for all of our Rangers - our staff certainly haven't been discouraged to undertake these duties. As we hope you can understand, there are often pressures created by the fact that we have limited resources and a large area to work on, so sometimes Rangers may be preoccupied and unable to have a chat. If this is the case and you are ever in need of help, we would always urge you to call Broads Control on 01603 756056 so we can log your incident and get you assistance if required. It's pleasant to see so many reports of positive experiences with our front line staff being discussed in this thread, however I can see some criticisms too. Without knowing details of the particular incident it's difficult to comment, but please remember that if you are ever unhappy with how any of our staff have dealt with you, please get in touch with us and let us know by using our online contact form and we will follow up if appropriate. Thanks! Tom
  19. 10 points
    Saturday 6th July I could see the suns rays coming a gap in the curtains as I woke up about 6.30 am. I lay in bed for a few moments just dozing and got up at 7 am At home I leave for work about 7 am, so I'm usually up around 6-6.15, I've never worked closer than a 25 mile journey to work, for the past 40 years I've travelled between 20-30k miles per year, that's a lot of miles! Mandy is an Advanced Practice Nurse Prescriber, she is self employed and holds various surgeries across Kent. She always starts later than me, so I get up and make her a cup of tea before I leave home every morning That's our routine, so no need to change it just because we are on holiday. So kettle on and slide the roof back Tea was made and delivered, I drank half of mine but Lottie had other ideas, she does this strange kind of silent bark and turns her head from side to side when you ask her what she wants, I would very very shocked if she told me! She clearly wanted out of the boat, so off we went again taking phone and extra care as we went through 'That Gate' I was going to see if I could walk through the fields to Ferry Road and then back to the boat As we walked through the fields we started to have a 'Mexican stand off' between Lottie and a dozen cows, they all just stood and stared at each other, I put her on the lead and walked towards them thinking they would be more scared of me and move out of the way. Oh no, these cows had 'bottle,' my ankle was reminding me with every step what an idiot I'd been the previous night and I didn't fancy competing in the 400 metres hurdles, so turned around and went back to the river path. This I followed for 10 mins or so, with Lottie having performed the tasks needed I turned around and went back to the boat, taking extra care with that bloody gate! Back at the boat it was kettle on again, tea made again, delivered again but this time I enquired when her ladyship would be getting up? Clearly not yet! A couple of Broom boats were leaving to return to their yard, so after they left I moved our dinghy from the bow to the stern, this meant Mandy wouldn't have to do it while the boat was in motion, all heart me! For the last 5 or 6 years we've always hired a dinghy, to be honest its a pain in the bum having to move it when stern mooring or being extra careful when mooring in a tight space However, I dont know if you've picked up on this? but I like pubs, I like beer, I like being in a pub with beer! My worse nightmare would be being unable to moor near a pub, so my insurance is the dinghy! When I had to go to meetings or functions in central London, I would take an umbrella, therefore ensuring no rain, if I forgot to take one I'd get very wet, mind you I've left quite a few in restaurants and the train! So far we have only used it in 'anger' at Ranworth (and again this year) so not many Running Bear and Little White Dove moments (that's showing my age) anyone under 50 google Running Bear by Johnny Preston! We only cook breakfast on the boat, preferring to eat lunch and dinner in the many wonderful pubs the Broads has. When I say 'we' I mean Mandy, my cooking skills are pretty basic and whilst Mandy is a good cook she does require more space that the average cruiser has for her creations My signature dish is Chicken Ping!, you basically buy a chicken ready meal, stick it in a microwave turn the dial to about 5 mins, when the microwave goes ping, you eat it! So full English again! I hate to think how much weight I've put on, but back on the diet and exercise routine next week We were ready to leave Surlingham at about 9.30 am Destination Rockland St Mary We look a very leisurely cruise down the Yare, we were in no hurry, the plan was to moor in the basin, take Lottie for a walk then have a drink/lunch at The New Inn The weather had been nice earlier, sunny, warmish with a little cloud, I looked at my weather app earlier and it had forecast it to turn cloudy and then light to medium rain but getting brighter later in the day, I had hoped that the first bit was wrong, unfortunately it was pretty much spot on I can never remember which is which, it probably doesn't matter, we went down Fleet/Short Dyke, through the broad and into the basin it was about 11 ish, it was very quiet, from memory 1 or 2 boats, but would get busier later The weather was ok, cloudy very grey but no rain and about 18c, which is shorts and T shirt for me, jeans and a fleece for Mandy At home we have the 'battle of the thermostat' Mandy will turn it up to 30c and think the house will warm up quicker, I've explained this is rubbish, but when I get back in the evening when Mandy has been home all day, I'll open the front door and get beaten back by the heat. I loose 2 stone as I crawl through the hall and manage to turn it down to 20c, I swear I hear the boiler cry out 'thank you' Anyway, Mandy probably chose right with the jeans, the path out across Rockland Broad was very overgrown and didn't look like it had been walked much, it was a lovely walk and we managed to get to the main river, but the nettle stings did take my mind of my ankle! We got back to The New Inn, sat out the front under a parasol and had a drink, me a Wherry, Mandy a Pimms and Lottie still on the water, she can be very boring! It started to spit after about 10/15 mins, so we decided to drink up and go back to the boat The mooring were now much busier, we had a nice chat with a couple of private boaters unfortunately cant remember the boats names The rain was that 'cant make its mind up' sort, Dawn's saloon is in the back, I cover the electrics up with black sacks so I can keep the roof open in very light rain. We waited for an hour to see what the weather was doing, it did ease a bit so we decided to head off. I didn't want to travel down Short/Fleet Dyke with the roof up as vision isn't the best. We also had discovered that the wiper wasn't working! However, I had read on here a couple of years ago (I think it was Malanka) about Rainx, which I had applied to the windscreen Friday evening. I had also brought our window vac with us (I take all sorts of stuff I never need) this was helpful, once we reached the Yare Mandy took the helm and I cleared the windows a couple of times The rain was off and on the whole time, the roof was like a 'tarts knickers' up and down every 5 or 10 mins, but we managed to to get to The Reedham Ferry, our booked mooring for the night reasonably easily The reserved board was out 'reserved Pacific Dawn 35 ft 5 pm' we were early but went in anyway just behind a Herbert Woods boat already moored, I took the board down and moved closer to the HW boat leaving space for another boat behind me. This was soon taken by a private boat who was most grateful to me for budging up, 'happy to help' I told him! I only booked our first two nights moorings, The Ferry House because I love it there, The Reedham Ferry because I wanted to cross Breydon on Sunday, I was concerned I might not get a mooring at Reedham Quay. Mind you I do like the Reedham Ferry, good beer, good food, nice pub! The rain was very light, we decided to go into the pub for a drink It was about 4.30 pm, the rain had stopped our table wasn't booked until 7.30 pm, so with plenty of time we decided to walk into Reedham. It's a shame you can't walk into Reedham along the river like you used to, but it's not a bad walk along the road, so the road it was The weather had improved greatly, so much so that we were able to sit in the garden of the Ship. We had a couple of drinks and headed back to the boat We popped into the Reedham Ferry when we got back to see if we could eat earlier than the 7.30 pm, only to be told they were fully booked and that I had actually booked the table for 8 pm, Doh! Anyway they did seat us at 7.30 pm in the end, we had a lovely meal, for once I paid with a card so kept the receipt (I normally pay with cash) so I know what we had, Me the Ribeye Mandy the Salmon And of course more beers and wine, Lottie.........water! When we got back to the boat, Mandy decided to read for a bit, I took Lottie out, with my phone and promised to stay away from gates! Sorry for the lack of photos, I had every intention to take loads, but I'm just a man who failed to multi task! PS some of these were yesterdays photo's that I missed so I've just thrown them in here, sorry To be continued!
  20. 10 points
    Well here we are moored at Sutton Staithe for our last night in Norfolk. An incident ocurred here today which gave me pause for thought. A large cruiser pulled up about 10 metres in front of ours. One of those with a very high built up stern with external steps leading to the upper helm and a bottom step or narrow bathing platform about 30cm above the water. One of the group, a well built chap, had just fastened the stern rope and stepped back onto the boat. I was having one of my last dangles (channelling Brando perhaps) when in my peripheral vision i saw him go backwards into the Broad with the most enormous splash. I was momentarily stunned (and thinking there goes the fishing) when he popped back up spitting copious quantities of Ant. Fortunately the boat was fitted with tranverse fenders across the rear and he was able to grab those. Then his mates came and dragged him out. All he lost were his sunglasses and dignity. Now erindoors has been assiduous in her wearing of her lifejacket whilst mooring. As for myself? Not once. Barmpot is the term I think. We have been valeting the boat prior to taking her back ( cleaner than when we picked her up) and i am thinking i do not want to give her back. She is not perfect. I would like an anchor winch, rear vision cameras, and a couple of USB ports at the helm, but she is without question the best we have hired. There is no way i could check her in as excess baggage, even long-haul the allowance is not that great, but if someone in the forum could quietly suggest how I might get her to the Humber estuary and still get my flight to Hong Kong on Sunday morning, there would be a large drink in it. Nuff said. OK? Cheers Chris
  21. 10 points
    I know that a number of members on here knew Roy Abrahams (Roya), I heard just now from his wife Gill that he sadly passed away in hospital yesterday evening. I don't know that he was active on the NBF but was a stalwart contributor to the NBF in its day and has more recently been involved with several Facebook-based sites focused on the Norfolk Broads. From my point of view he was a great character, an enthusiastic Broadsman and a friend and he will be missed.
  22. 10 points
    Well, we"ve been waiting for this day to come for what seems like an eternity. It"s 07,00, the alarm has just gone off, and we're in a hotel bed in Gravesend about to get up for breakfast and hit the Dartford tunnel. We've decided to do things a bit differently this time, and break the journey up by splitting it into two halves. The first half saw Karen and I setting off from a very warm and sunny East Dorset and head for Gravesend to visit my Brother (and usual first mate, though not this time) for dinner, then overnight in our regular hotel. It looks like It"s going to be another lovely day, here's hoping.
  23. 10 points
    Ditto , and I hope that a mutually beneficial dialogue can spring forth from this . Please can other forum members regard the BA joining us as a positive move by them and not use it as an excuse to harass or insult them relentlessly. Obviously in no way should we cease to voice our complaints and criticisms as we have always done , and we have always known the BA read this forum but let’s not lose their direct contributions , hopefully in this way we can avoid some of the speculative rumours that have happened in the past and get direct input from “the horse mouth”. should say the above is IMHO but honestly believe direct input from the BA can only be beneficial to us
  24. 10 points
    Dawn over Ranworth. Ah, but (those paying attention may say), that should be dawn over Upton Dyke. True, but whilst cruising slowly down the Thurne, we had a conversation. We agreed we must have one last night at Ranworth as it is such a special place and the weekend will be manic and we have to meet friends at Coltishall early next week. So we turned right instead of left and on such decisions, the fate of nations can rest. Though not in this case, obviously. So i spent a happy afternoon fishing and watching reversing 101. Not as a critic, take away my bowthrusters and i can be as cack handed as the next Johnny, but interested. More interesting was watching the people watching the reversing. There were those who will offer words of advice "tell him to shove it hard over and boot it love", those who get involved and offer to take a rope, and those who, regardless of the drama unfolding next door to them, just stay on their duffs sipping Prosecco or something. Fortunately they are in the minority. Anyroad up it looks like the rain is easing so i am off to dangle a few more maggots before we head for Upton. Or we have another conversation. Cheers Chris
  25. 10 points
    I just want to say in the words of the TV presenters when someone has said the name of a brand on air. Other brands of angler are also available! I have met many of them.
  26. 10 points
    About 30 years ago my wife (at the time) and friends were visiting Oulton Broad one summer Sunday. We came across a family stood on the quay at the Yacht Station in some distress. Their little boy (about seven years old) had been feeding ducks with his sister and had lost his new glasses into the water. He'd only had them a week and wasn't used to them. They had simply slipped off his nose. Shoes, socks and jeans off, into the water, didn't realise it was so deep and cold!! About 10 minutes of diving in the filthy water with just about zero visibility returned a couple of cans, a spanner, several stones and finally a pair of blue NHS specs, none the worse for their dunking. By way of thanks we were treated to a pot of tea at the café on the corner of Bridge Road and the car park behind the Yacht Station (now closed).
  27. 9 points
    Hello everyone, We just wanted to announce that we've managed to get an account sorted on the forum now. Thank you to the administrators for helping get everything approved. We're looking forward to getting involved with more discussions on here and engaging with forum members on topics related to the Broads. If you have any non-urgent questions or issues that you would like to bring to our attention please either mention us (using the @ function) or drop us a private message. For an urgent response we'd still recommend either giving us a call on 01603 610734 or sending us a message via our contact form as these will be dealt with using the official channels. Our account will primarily be monitored by our small communications team, however advice and guidance from other members of staff across departments will be sought and relayed as necessary. We are on here to help and advise where necessary, rather than tolerating abuse. Moderators have advised us to inform them of any incidents and they will be dealt with through the regular forum protocol. Finally, please bear with us if answers or input takes longer than expected as we won't be monitoring the account on a constant basis. We'll try to get back to you as soon as possible. Many thanks, Tom
  28. 9 points
    Us woodies just turn the bilge pump off for a few mins.
  29. 9 points
    Sunday 7th July I awoke to the sound of rainfall on the cabin top – not a good beginning, yet no sooner had I drawn the curtains, it stopped and as it turned out, that was the last I would see of it for a few days. Blue skies were approaching, or to be more precise, grey clouds were departing. My plan for today was to overnight at Sutton Staithe, with a lunchtime stop at Ludham Bridge. This was the closest to the school summer holiday I had ever been on the Broads so I was not sure what to expect in terms of mooring availability, but I guessed it would be busier than usual. As such, I departed my home mooring at 9.30am and slowly nosed out of the dyke and into the Bure. Nothing was coming either way, and for this part of the cruise, Goosander was mostly unaccompanied. The sun was out and the top was rolled back. I reached Ludham Bridge around 11am, and peaked through to see free moorings on the shop side, and as luck would have it, the tide was flowing out. So the first mooring manoeuvre of the holiday went without a hitch. The moorings opposite, reserved for yachts seem to attract boats like wasps to a jar of jam. In the two hours or so I watched, a number of craft came alongside, sometimes struggling to battle the offshore wind, only to realise that the yellow and white topped mooring posts meant something other than “here’s my ideal mooring”. There is a large sign proclaiming that only yachts should stake a claim, and in some cases, active moorers were stood right in-front of it but to no avail. After a salad lunch, I considered it would be a good idea to set off for Sutton sooner rather than later, bearing in mind it was a Sunday, and the staithe would likely get busy with “last night of holiday” Richardsons craft. So around 1.30pm, I cast off and made my way past the numerous boats now looking for a sardine tin to occupy for a few hours. How Hill was well stacked with boats and Irstead? – don’t even ask! Barton Broad was quite windy, which I guess suited the numerous sailing dinghies which were darting across the channels designated for my more sedate diesel chugger. Out the other end of Barton, I made my way towards Sutton Broad (not broad at all). Approaching the staithe always presents a dilemma in that the best part to moor is by the green, outside the hotel. However, you may well be passing a space in the dyke to get there, and if someone following nabs it, you may be left “homeless”, if you discover the green is full. On this occasion, to my delight, I noted that no craft were following me so I could turn my nose up to a dyke mooring, and cruise on down to the green with impunity should I need to retrace my steps in the event my first choice was occupied. It wasn’t. So I nosed into a fairly tight space, used throttle to kick the stern in and my first mate the bow thrusters, to guide the pointy end gently alongside. The sun was out and it was a pleasantly warm afternoon so I decided to walk into Stalham via the main road. When I last came here in April, I was glad I had booked a table as the Sutton Staithe Hotel which was very busy, so en-route I called in and made a reservation for 6.30pm. I was outside Richardsons yard around 25 minutes later and thought it would be interesting to see how many boats remained for hire. So I walked all the quays and would guess around two thirds of their fleet had set sail. Is a third remaining unusual for this time of the year? Not sure. Certainly, the boats that remained unattached, were the older, cheaper models - not the swish “instagram image” models. After a visit to the Tesco Supermarket, I turned around and made my way back to Goosander, arriving back around 4pm., which gave me time to kick my shoes off and relax for a couple of hours. I noticed that the two boats moored infront of me had now departed leaving two good spaces for any Richardsons latecomers. It was soon time for my evening meal so I got ready and stepped ashore. As I approached the Hotel I noticed two Richardsons Commander type cruisers come down the dyke and moor just in-front of Goosander. I looked at these gleaming white thoroughbreds and thought, wow there must be some money tied up there, and not just the boats themselves! My meal in the Hotel was lovely. I opted for the Steak and Ale Pie. If I say that this meal was every bit as good as that which used to be served up at the Ship Inn in Reedham, once the home of the finest steak and ale pie on the Broads, you will get an inkling as to its quality! Cheesecake (of course) followed, and by 8pm I was making my way across the green towards Goosander. The occupants of the two Commanders were outside barbequing to the strains of some very loud music, interspersed with shrieks of laughter (that or they were sacrificing a pig). The evening became cooler which was probably their signal to move indoors, sparing the rest of us any more verses of Agadoo and Dancing Queen. In fairness, I heard nothing more of them after that. I watched a little TV, then settled down for the night. Ludham Bridge Wonder if the RAC will warn of this busy junction when the school holidays are in full swing? This little fellow came for a ride with me to Sutton, then just flew off without a thank you! I always think my heart would sink if this was the only boat left to hire. It has all the attributes of it's dual steer sister ships, (Forth Bridge 1 & 2 for example) but does not have the alternative helm position. Can't see the point of building it like that! Saw this in Richardsons yard. Not sure if it's their new build sedan, or perhaps some sort of sea going craft Sutton Staithe Hotel He got very close to the boat. This was through the front window. Finally could not resist this. Perhaps just the thing when you are being assaulted by "noisy neighbors. Just joking - it's not mine!
  30. 9 points
    I hope that you achieve your wish to move to Norfolk. I have lived in Norfolk all my life. I have been fortunate to have been able to travel all over Europe, Asia, and Australia. I could not be bothered to do the rest. Sad I know. It is just that the quality of life in Norfolk has provided all that I held to be important to me and my family. Security, friendships, the rivers, the coast, the wild life, all within a few miles from where I live. Indeed a few minutes, half an hour at most. Andrew
  31. 9 points
    The lead up Having enjoyed reading everyone's tales of the holidays on the broads, I thought it was time I wrote one myself. The crew were myself, my wife Mandy and little Lottie the dog This was the second part of our adventures this summer, we'd been in the Lake District the previous week staying in a pub (where else) just north of Windermere Now, I only mention this because we hire from Pacific Cruisers, and as a 'one week a year boater' I've always thought that starting off on a boat in Loddon isn't the easiest starting point for someone who might be a bit 'rusty' Whilst in Cumbria we decided to do the Eskdale Steam Railway, a lovely little trip through beautiful scenery,. However to get there we had to drive the Wrnose and Hardknott passes OMG, I love my car for driving the 80 mile round trip to work and back, but my choice in life of a rear wheel drive automatic was being severely questioned, by me! We made it, and as I couldn't find a much better route back, we did it again, so my initial concern of navigating The Chet from cold held no fears I later found out walking down a footpath was far more dangerous! Below is a picture of Lottie waiting for the train to leave and the only 'selfie' I've ever taken or likely to take to show the crew! To be continued shortly!
  32. 9 points
    This is the BBC Home Service. Hold it up to the light – not a brain in sight. Some of you will know by now that I tend to see the world through 'Goon' tinted glasses. Not just The Goons but programming such as 'the Navy lark', 'Hancock's Half Hour', 'The Men From The Ministry', 'Round the Horne' and the panoply of what is now referred to as 'vintage radio comedy'. As I say my vision is tinted by classic humour, I can't help but see the world as a comedy on the 'Light Programme'. I mean, take today's news report on the changes in personnel in charge of fashion at Marks & Sparks. The chief executive Steve Rowe noting failings such as not buying enough jeans for a promotion. He then comes out with a pure gem worthy of Julian and Sandy. "That led to us having some of the worst availability in casual trousers I've seen in my life,". Ooh, ain't 'ee bold! But today has brought a joy far greater than scarcity in the trouser department at M&S. Today, on the drive back from Sheffield, granddaughter Gracie and her best friend Lola discovered 'The Goons'. Explosions of belly laughs erupted from the back seat of the car as they listened to Quatermass OBE on the radio. "Put Bluebottle on again!" Gracie pleaded crying with laughter when Peter Sellers as Bluebottle said 'chips and brown gravy' while I explained you can't rewind radio. But fortunately, I had my recordings on MP3 so we got to listen to my favourite 'Tales of Men's Shirts'. "Can we listen to Bluebottle on the radio on the boat?" asked Gracie. "Oh no!" exclaimed Grandma. "Oh Yes!" said Timbo. First, Grace gets hooked on boats and now The Goons. Today has been a good day! Or is that a Goon day? Thynne!
  33. 9 points
    I want to talk to you all about a very serious illness that affects thousands of children all over the United Kingdom - Visibility Deficiency Syndrome. While normal children can be seen by fellow members of society, children with VDS struggle with a cloak of invisibility that makes it impossible for others to acknowledge their existence. The owner of this car just parked in this parent and child space and walked off with his children close behind. It was clear that they all suffered from this terrible illness. People are always so quick to judge, but until you have walked a mile in his shoes you’ll never know their pain or agony. There are no common genetic factors for parents who end up having children with VDS. For some reason, it often happens to adults who own Audis, BMWs, Land Rovers, or souped-up, sporty Ford w**kwagons like the one pictured here. So the next time that you spot someone walking away from a car that is parked in a parent and toddler space, seemingly without any children, just stop for a minute before giving them any abuse. Let’s raise VDS awareness.
  34. 9 points
  35. 9 points
    Should you happen to be navigating the River Waveney during the long glorious days of summer ahead, then take time to moor at Cove Staithe, midway between WRC and Beccles on the south bank of the river. From here you are a very pleasant thirty minute walk from two of Broadland's finest public houses which you might not have heard of, let alone visited. A green road, known as Cove Dam leads from the staithe across the marshes to Marsh lane and in to North Cove. Take care crossing the railway line, a hundred yards or so after which the lane bears left ignoring the farm track to alder carr to the right. At the end of the lane turn right still Marsh Lane and follow this road past Covehall Farm until you reach the entrance to North Cove Hall on your right next to which there is a footpath which leads on to a closed section of the Old Lowestoft Road where you will find the Three Horseshoes. A delightful pub which caters to all tastes and a real example to anyone modernising a pub on how to do it properly. The interior is very smart without being "sterilised" as other pubs in the area have been. Always several real ales available on hand pump, good range of bottled beers and ciders and a decent wine list. Food is excellent with Thai cuisine on selected nights, but you can still get a fishfinger sandwich or cheesy chips if you prefer and prices are very reasonable. Occasionally have live music especially on Sunday Afternoons and if you are lucky enough to be in the vicinity on August 18th then the wonderful Tosh Ewins will be along to entertain you, between 4 and 7. Leaving the Horseshoes retrace your steps along the footpath to Marsh Lane which you cross and proceed along The Street opposite which will take you into Barnby. As the road turns right to join the bypass take a left turn into Swan Lane, past the garden centre and the farm and you will find the Swan on your left hand side as you come to The Green. This is more of a diner's establishment with occasional Thai Nights (must be a poplar cuisine in these parts) but the highlight here is afternoon tea, available in three forms. Cream, Savoury or High Tea but must be booked 24 hours ahead, and the excellent seafood restaurant. There is a full menu for those who prefer something a little less fishy and whilst prices are higher than the Horseshoes they are still good value. From the Swan, turn left along the Green and onto Sidings Lane which becomes Wadehall Lane, past Fairfield Farm (two lovely holiday cottages here btw) then turn right down a track marked Public Footpath, Wadehall Old Dam. Again, take care crossing the railway line then a footpath takes you back across the marshes to Six Mile Corner on the river 400 yards or so down stream of the staithe. Turn left along the river bank back to your boat. Distances? From the river to the Three Horseshoes about a mile and a half along well laid green roads, lanes and footpath. From the Horshoes to the Swan about a mile and a quarter along footpath and village lanes. From the Swan to the staithe around a mile and a half along country lanes, farm track and river bank. The walking is generally flat and quite easy, just the section along the riverbank can be a bit squishy in place during wet weather. Allow thirty minutes for each section. http://www.thethreehorseshoesnorthcove.co.uk/index.html https://thebarnbyswan.co.uk/ ma1_pmw.pdf
  36. 9 points
    Well what a shame. We haven't moored at Langley for a few years, and when we got to the Abbey, we found out it was closed to the public about four years ago. We walked back to Lightning and got underway. Our plan was to go to Rockland for the 240 hook up, but wile en-route, I suggested we carry on up the Yare to our home mooring at Brooms, where we could jump in the car and get the last few supplies for the last few days. We got home so to speak, and shopping bought, along with some rope hangers for Lightnings stern ropes, which either live on the side decks, or in the aft well. We're back aboard, and Karen has a shower. We wanted the 240 for her hair dryer, and straighteners, plus our home mooring hook up is meter read so we didn't us a card. I fill up with water, fit the rope hangers, and we're back under way. We have lovely cruise down the Yare, where our plan is to Moor at Hardley Mill, somewhere we've never moored at. We pass the sugar factory and find the mill moorings (or should that be pump?) with three boats on them, one at either end, and the smallest boat there moored slap bang in the middle, allowing only small boats in between. Oh well, time for plan B, we carry on to Reedham. As we approach Reedham, we're following two other boats, the second of which took the only mooring space big enough. Thinking we may have to opt for plan C, which was Loddon for two nights, Karen see's someone pulling out, leaving a massive gap, sorted. Things didn't go too plan when mooring up, I didn't realise the tide was running so fast, and as I turned the bow into the mooring, the tide pushed our stern into the boat behind. It was only a slight tap.,but it is still someone's pride and joy. We tied Lightning up with springs, and I went back to apologise and take all blame, it was me on the hel, and I should have taken a few seconds extra to check the tidal flow. I've moored at Reedham in fast tides before, and have mostly shown a clean pair of heals. Oh well, I asked the other owners aboard to inspect their boat, but all was well, with only my pride taking a bashing. We get chatting to the other owners, who start complementing us on the good condition of Lightning, and saying how spacious she is. Just as they depart, our new found friends Martin and Jane come upriver just in time to see another boat leave, so they pull in and Moor. Again, we get chatting, over a cuppa. Karen and I have already decided to use up what food we have left, and agree to meet up with M and J for a drink in the Ship. We use up the last of the potato's so kindly given to us by the Admiral, along with some cold pork and salad, me?, healthy eating, whatever next?. We get to the Ship, meet our friends, only to hear they could only get fish n chips as that was all they had, and at 7.00pm. Not good for a pub with a supposed good reputation. We sit chatting til 10.30, and make our way back to our boats, where as typing this post, I'm listening to Owls calling in the distance. It's one of Mother nature's wonderful night time sounds, and a sound that will hopefully help me drift off in bed. But that's just another normal night time sound on the Broads. Good night all.
  37. 9 points
    ok, I will chip in with the lovely gentleman in may, who helped me walk my boat past his from the moorings in cockshoot dyke when i didnt have the space to turn at the end and was struggling to get steerage way in reverse in the space available.
  38. 9 points
    What a good night's sleep, I slept like a log. We awake to a bright but cloudy breezy morning. We got chatting to guy called Martin on one of Brooms boats yesterday, and he and his good lady (Jane) were up and sitting in their cockpit taking in the air. We get chatting again when Rod returns with their trusty companion "Treacle". We all discuss where to have breakfast. We went to a little place called 142 Cafe and Bar, in Bridge road, soon to be joined by Rod and Shirley, and shortly after by our new found friends Martin and Jane. We all have bacon sandwiches of some kind along with a healthy dose of conversation, so much so that we realised it had gone 11, we'd been in there for over an hour and a half, but had to leave as we were heading towards either Langley dyke or Rockland. With water tank filled we're on our way. We round the corner from Oulton, only to see Peters Joy moored at "The Dutch Tea Gardens", so we quickly Moor up to go and say hello, but we're surprised to find Paul was not aboard, it was daughter Sam and her family, and Paul was later to join them in the week. We get underway again, and enjoy a cruise down the Waveney under changing skies and a fresh breeze, so different to Saturday, yet still dry. We had advance warning that there a couple of rangers moored around the bend with a speed gun, shame they didn't have any interest in the young guys speeding side by side and throwing beers cans around while going past them. As we pass them, they set off and followed us up the new cut, yet turned around after Hadisco Bridge. While cruising up the New Cut, I start to feel the chill of the breeze, so when we reached the wider Yare, I shut down the upper helm controls and carried on from inside, much warmer down here. We cruise up the Yare punching a hard tide, and eventually come to the mouth of Langley dyke. Up to this point Karen had been driving from Reedham, but isn't confident in confined spaces, so I took over from up top. It's much easier from up top, better views, and a better view for navigation. As we turned into Langley dyke, we're following a dinghy with 4 people sailing under head sail alone, along with a paddle, so in and out of drive trying to steer in neutral and ahead on tickover. Eventually, they pulled over to more, but never once said thank you for our patience. We turn before the mooring and reverse in with the kind help from a kind gentleman called Keith, who owns an Aqua fibre Lowliner 38. He knows a few people on syndicate boats, so we get chatting, and invite him aboard to show him around and have a quick chat. He'off at 6 to get back to their mooring ready to go home tomorrow. Now the clouds have lessened, and I'm about to cook my version of pasta amatraciana, and No, it's NOT out of a can. It's looking a bit brighter now, so after dinner, I may settle down do a bit of sweetcorn drowning. I wonder what the evening will bring, could it be yet another record catch, I wonder?.
  39. 8 points
    Goodbye folks, it has been fun knowing you. I shall continue to follow your antics from "the other side". We are now experiencing the true beauty of hindsight. Swmbo was determined to travel light, bringing the minimum in the smallest possible case. It was great. At the start. Since then we have perused shops and sales, all the while me muttering " i dont have a clue where this is going". Now neither of us have an idea where this is going. Certainly not in that tiny purse she termed her "carry on". Carry On is right. The bottleneck is our internal flight from Norwich to Manchester (truly the cheapest and quickest way to make the trip) and we will now have to get Logan Air to look the other way whilst we sneak on with a cabin trunk hidden under my (my!!) Jumper. Have fun. Chris
  40. 8 points
    surely you are just saying here that they are doing their job, checking boats are registered and tolled, warning boats that they are exceeding the speed limits, I am sure they also check for overstaying on the 24 hour moorings, is fishing within their remit, or is that a different department (i dont know the answer to that one), as for avoiding confrontation, well that too is their job, to warn people in a nice manner, without allowing it to become an incident.
  41. 8 points
    After 10 seasons at Brundall Bay marina we decided we needed a change of scenery and have moved our permanent mooring to Ferry marina at Horning. Saturday 13th was the best day for us to get the air draught we needed to get under the bridges at Yarmouth. With us being 12'6" high we need to take down the canopy, radar arch etc. and crossing Breydon water in inclement weather is not much fun I can assure you. But it was O.K. on Saturday a bit overcast and breezy but nothing too dire. Taking our time we berthed in Ferry marina 5 hours 50mins after leaving our berth in Brundall Bay. We've vey much enjoyed our years in Brundall but have had a hankering to try the Northern Broads for some time but it was a case of finding a berth that met our criteria which until this year we have never managed to do. We realise we have arrived just as the holidays are beginning making everywhere super busy which may come as a bit of a shock after the relative quietness of the Southern Broads but Heigh-Ho nothing ventured nothing gained. Carole
  42. 8 points
    Thank you all for the warm welcome, we're looking forward to getting more involved on here. We have got a fairly small and busy comms team but we'll try and respond to things as and when we get a chance, so please bear with us if you don't get a response as quickly as we'd like. Thanks again! Tom
  43. 8 points
    Monday 1st July Woke to a cloudless blue sky again and a strong breeze. We turned the boat on the ropes so that the awning opening would be sheltered from the wind, and to bring our bow around to face the exit of the dyke. By 9am though there was a fair amount of cloud, though with sunny spells. We didn’t rush to get away this morning as I made us a breakfast of fried new potatoes, spam and scrambled egg. By the time we’d eaten that lot it was after 10. We were a bit lazy this morning. We knew that we’d have the wind against us down Meadow Dyke, so rather than sail across the Mere we just motored across and then down the dyke. Once in Heigham Sound I held the boat head to wind whilst Graham and Harry got the sails up. We had a lovely sail through Candle Dyke and then all the way up to West Somerton, passing a weed cutting machine near Martham Broad. There seems to be a weed cutter permanently working up there in July/August. On the moorings at West Somerton. When we got to West Somerton, we thought the mooring there was pretty exposed to the strong wind and would be even worse overnight as the wind was forecast to swing to the north. We decided to leave the mooring and head back down river to Womack. This was probably a bad idea, as we realised that we could have done with that northerly wind for the section past Martham Broad. We couldn’t use the electric quant on that section as it was far too weedy (would have fouled the prop), and the wind was too strong to manually quant, so we were reduced to tacking against the strong westerly wind. We got on okay initially until we failed to turn on a section passing the Broad and ended up stuck in mud just outside the marked channel. Whoops! Attempts to push ourselves off with the quant failed miserably and we ended up flagging down the two guys in the weed-cutting machine who towed us off the mud and downriver as far as a wild mooring on the bend (marked Dungeon Corner on the map). We rond-anchored there for a while for a coffee break, next to a couple who kindly lent us their boat hook to try to clear the weed that we had collected underneath the boat. It was well after 2pm by the time we got going again. We were a bit tired by now, so just motored down the Thurne rather than raising our sails. We had to put the motor into reverse a few times to clear the remainder of the weed. We all agreed, that's the last time we'll visit West Somerton. It's just not worth the hassle! At Potter, Graham and I popped into Latham’s for a few essentials (citronella candles, fly-swat, doggy treats, duck and swan food). Whilst Harry and Graham got our mast down, I walked Seren to the de-masting area south of the bridge and tried videoing their passage through the bridge. As Harry came in to moor a large Herbie Woods boat unexpectedly came in to moor from the other direction, with imminent danger of collision (we had thought he was aiming for the boatyard entrance). Harry threw Lustre into reverse and I hastily threw the bow rope around a post. Phew – disaster averted! When I told them that the area was reserved for de-masting, one of their crew explained that their helmsman was worried about negotiating the boatyard entry. It was only when I pointed out that another yacht was approaching and needed to de-mast that they moved to a space a bit further on. After we’d got our mast back up, we motored through Potter and back to Hunter’s Yard, back to our home berth. Even more lazily, we drove (!) up to the King’s Arms for dinner. Graham had scampi and salad of their light-bites menu (still a large portion of scampi though). Harry and I had fish dishes off their specials board. He had plaice stuffed with prawns with a spring onion and cream sauce, crushed new potatoes and veggies whilst I had herb crusted sea bream fillets with creamy leek and bacon sauce and rosti. Although I try to avoid dairy most of the year, I usually find that I can get away with eating dairy products in July, August and September, so I’m making the most of it! My dish was very tasty, but I always find the helpings in the King’s Arms was too big. Harry and I swopped dishes half way though, as we’d both had difficulty deciding which dish to have. We lit a citronella candle in the well area of the boat this evening to deter flies and mozzies. Seemed to work – we weren’t bothered by flies in the night.
  44. 8 points
    I understand the Lake District National Park are interesting in acquiring it as a patrol and Rescue vessel for use on Derwent Water, as there current vessel is deemed too big. I guess it would be renamed Spirit of Derwent II, or perhaps even Little SOD.
  45. 8 points
  46. 8 points
    Not the view of the NBN, just views of individual posters who are happy to share. We are happy for others to share opposing views as some have. The key part is that the NBN is happy to see different points of view and have them debated in a mature and non confrontational way.
  47. 8 points
    When Tan & I married we spent our honeymoon on Narrow Boat run by Mr Dye from Dycraft. On the run through of the boat Mr Dye went for ages about the shaver socket in the bathroom and eventually looked at me and commented but you may not need that. We opened our case which had been docketed with some form of confetti bomb that shot confetti all over the boat. Regards Alan
  48. 8 points
    I wonder how much dredging could be done for that sort of money, or how much bankside foliage cleared, or 24 hour moorings re-instated, or Broadside refuse sites replaced?. Or am I just being too synical?.
  49. 8 points
    I’m sure we all have moorings we’re proud of and those that weren’t quite so perfect. I’ll always remember my first two moorings at Bramerton Common and Reedham. Private owners helped me out with advice and wisdom that I have long remembered. And in turn we have always tried to offer help to fellow boaters. My best ever mooring? Slotting Fair Prince perfectly into a space between two boats at a crowded Ranworth Staithe! Best overnight mooring? Hard to pick but Womack Water all to ourselves in March was very special.
  50. 8 points
    This is their new Sedan cruiser - Waveney Pegasus. Is it just me or does this boat look like it's taken part in a magicians sawn in half trick that's gone wrong? It looks dangerous without any rails at the back.
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