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Showing content with the highest reputation on 13/05/19 in all areas

  1. 7 points
    The first word in my sentence you quoted is "Perhaps". I don't actually know the reason for the decision. I haven't even seen any confirmation that the vessel is up for sale. But, if it is for sale and it has proved difficult to get engine spares, 2 + 2 might just equal 4 on this occasion, or I might be wide of the mark. If you bought a car in good faith, and it turned out that spares took a long time to arrive, resulting in much off-the-road time, what would you do? Get rid of it as soon as you could, and get something you could use, or keep it and put up with it being stuck in the garage? How many times have we seen critical posts on here and elsewhere about the absence of SoB from its patrol area. Bear in mind, as well, that the BA didn't just jump in with both feet. Several different options were considered and independent advice was sought, before SoB was purchased. I don't like my toll money being wasted, anymore than anyone else, but I would rather SoB be sold and the experience gained be used to purchase another vessel, more suited to the task than some have regarded SoB, so that better value can be had over the next 20-odd years.
  2. 7 points
    A second small glass of port was poured and it wasn't long before we could hear our beds calling. A very peaceful nights sleep ensued and a bit of a lazy start the next morning during which a full English brekky was called for. We had stocked the fridge with lots of tasty treats from Roy's the day before whilst in Wroxham. My friend started the cooking whilst I had a bit of a tidy up and setup the table ready for breakfast. Cook informed me that the plates would be hot, so I placed two place mats, (otherwise known as The Broadcaster) on the table at the ready. Over breakfast we discussed whether to call the pilot again to check the clearance or just head to Potter anyway. It was decided that plan A was head to Potter and hopefully through that bridge, with plan B being either The Lion at Thurne, or Womack if not. It was decided that we should fill with fresh water in case we do get through the bridge, not being sure how many water points there were above the bridge and also to help balance the boat in readiness for the bridge. Breakfast polished off and the roof is put down and we head over to the water point at Salhouse to fill up. The sky is looking grey and overcast, but no sign of rain. With a full water tank we start our gentle cruise down the Bure. We had been told on Monday that we should be at the bridge about 2 hours before low water which today was around 5pm, so a 3pm arrival would be ideal. Horning approached and discussions turned to whether we should stop for a pint, or carry on. In the end we decided to carry on as if we were earlier at Potter we might get through earlier and if there was no chance we had more time to implement plan B. After an uneventful slow cruise we arrived in Potter and got a mooring close to the pilot office, arriving just after 1pm. I go off to have a chat with the guys in the office and to find out what our chances are. The guys are having lunch and we chat about the possibility of going through the bridge. The gauge is showing 6ft10in and I'm told we will clear the bridge now, but the only concern might be coming back. I enquire whether we might be able to stay for one or two nights and am told that one night should be fine, but we need to keep a close eye on the weather and pressure. They say it is very unusually good clearance for this time of year and we need to watch out for the wind swinging back anywhere North of North East. I'm then asked if we want to go through now, or a little later, to which I jump at the chance of going now. "ok no problem, he'll be over in a little while" pointing to a pilot I'd never seen before. I return to the boat and inform my friend we are going through the bridge and proceed to ensure the roof is as far back as it can go, and that everything is clear for our passage. A little while later the pilot joins us on board and we slip our mooring. A brief chat with the pilot during which time he tells me how these are not his favourite boat to take through the bridge, as when you stand in the centre of the boat to line yourself up with the centre of the bridge the wheel is too far over to one side and you cannot reach it, without having to keep moving back and forth. This immediately reminded me of a night some years back when myself and another friend got chatting to the sadly departed Graham RIP at the bar of the Broadshaven. Keen to improve my technique for Wroxham bridge, I had already decided it would always be the pilot for Potter bridge, I asked Graham what the secret was for taking a boat through a bridge like Potter or Wroxham. No secret was the reply, you just need to know that it will fit, and then aim straight for the centre of the bridge. He told me that once a boat had been measured the first time they kept records of what height was needed and as long as you knew you had the clearance it should go. He told me to ensure you stand in the centre of the boat and ideally find something on the centre of the bow you can line you with the centre keystone of the bridge, even if this meant keeping the wheel at arms length. I asked him about the speed they go through at, did that help with lowering the boat in the water and he said it did a little, but it also helped to maintain a true course and offset any gusts of wind etc. This did however sound a bit like make or break very severely, and I've always adopted a cautious speed at Wroxham bridge. If I misjudge it, I want to hit the bridge as lightly as possible. We are now on the approach to the bridge and I give the pilot the same courtesy my friend offers me at Wroxham bridge and I step down out of the cockpit and stand still in the galley to allow the pilot to concentrate. This means that I have no view of where we are going, all I can see ahead is the closed cabin door and the bulkhead that makes up the front cabin. The Nanni beside me starts to scream like a banshee as the engine and transmission get their pilots stress tests. We are picking up speed and it is actually quite unnerving to not be able to see what we are heading for. Suddenly it all goes dark, then it goes light and we are through that bridge. The date is the 1st May 2019 and we are now North of Potter bridge for the first time in about four years. The boat has passed it's pilot stress test MOT and we are heading towards the green outside Norada, TBC
  3. 6 points
    Forgive me but if someone didn’t have the courage to dig into chit chat and rumor, without it being a nailed down fact, there would be no expenses scandal, no watergate, no climategate, no infected blood scandal , no wind rush scandal, the list is endless. Criticise away guys don’t stop. That way lies censorship of the self inflicted variety, the worst of all.
  4. 6 points
    I heard they were all out of the office that day putting Contravention notices on boats.......
  5. 6 points
    Keen not to waste any time in Potter now we are North of the bridge we drop the pilot off and continue on our way. Discussion now turns to where that might be. My friend is keen to head to Catfield staithe and The Crown Inn for the evening until I remind him that the last time we were up there in a hired day boat, two years ago, we both remarked how overgrown with reeds it had become, and that it was unlikely we would get my boat down there and the risk of getting stuck was too great. I should point out that I do have pictures of my boat moored at Catfield staithe about 12 years ago, but the dyke was a lot more navigable then. Three times in the last few years myself and a small group of friends have hired one, sometimes two of the National Trust Barns at Horsey, next door to The Nelsons Head, for a week over the New Year period. During these holidays the Nelsons Head has become our second home, so whilst we are keen to visit again, we know there are other opportunities for visiting this pub. During those holidays we have also travelled to The Lion at Somerton, and whilst it's good to see the pub open and busy, it has always seemed very slightly uninspiring compared to the other pubs North of the bridge. Based on all the above we decide the two choices are Hickling and Horsey, with Hickling being the first night just in case we don't get a second night North of the bridge. We cruise at tick over past all the bungalows and eventually turn into Candle Dyke and are heading towards Hickling. In the distance we can see a ranger heading our way, the first one we have seen so far this week. As we get closer the side window slides open and a head I don't recognise pops out and says "The water levels must be low if you're up here!. You did well getting that through the bridge". "Not me" I replied, "the pilot got us through, but he reckons we should be good for a day, maybe two" A cheery wave and we are both on our way. A brief stop at Deep Go Dyke moorings for a bite to eat and then we cast of again and continue our journey to Hickling. The sun is now starting to break through and all is good with the world. Hickling comes into view and we cruise across it with one other sail boat for company. As we approach The Pleasure Boat we decide to take the end of the dyke closest to the broad and moor up using the very last posts at that end. It's now mid afternoon and the beer garden of the pub is just looking too inviting. So roof and windscreen up and we depart the boat for the pub. In case a certain forum member reads this part, I must state that the next part of this tale is as it happened and no offence is meant and hopefully none is taken. We start to head done the path to the pub when my friend suddenly stops and says "that's a strange name for a boat" "Which one?" I replied. To which he replied, "look that one over there" pointing to a boat in the other dyke. "The one with the names LOOS" At which point I have to stop and look at my friend because I'm unsure whether he is being serious, or pulling my leg. I decide in disbelief that it is the former and cannot help but reply with, "you idiot, that's the boat registration number, not the name. The name is there on the side look" At which point we both burst out laughing and continue to the pub whilst I explain who's boat it is, and how we have met the owner several times at previous NBF forum meets. The rest of the afternoon passed quickly aided by the cider and real ale selection from The Pleasure Boat Inn and just a little ribbing from me about the boat name mix up. Before long it was time for showers and a freshen up before a stroll into Hickling and a visit to The Greyhound. Again a good selection of beers and the food being served was proving too tempting, especially the specials, so we opted to eat there. A gentle stroll back towards the boat and it is time for a night cap or three at The Pleasure Boat. We did enquire after said forum member and was told that he was possibly due up the following weekend, so if anything was mentioned to by the landlord, you'll now know who it was asking. Maybe it was the beer or the sun, but I could have sworn that time seemed to be going backwards and remarked as such to the landlord. As it turns out it is a bit of a standing joke because John who runs The sister pub The Nelsons Head has a real problem with the backwards clock at the Pleasure Boat Inn. Before too long it was decided that it was time to head back to the boat and a small glass of port before heading off to our beds. I'm not sure which awoke me the first, the need to go to the toilet, or the sound of the rain drumming on the cabin roof. Whichever I went to the toilet and as it was still dark headed back to bed, but not before checking the weather. The wind was now blowing a North Easterly and predicted for Northerly later in the day. Oh well nothing can be done about it now so sleep called again, TBC
  6. 6 points
    With the meal paid for we set off back towards the boat, stopping on route to check the most accurate height gauge in Wroxham. For those that don't know, if you head towards the Faircraft Loynes day boat hut next to the bridge and walk down the pier towards the bridge, they have a height gauge mounted on the reverse of the where the BA height gauge is. That is the one that the FL pilots will work from and has the true height. 7ft6ins and we are well and truly good to go. We head back to the viaduct moorings and drop the sliding roof and fold the windscreen forward. My friend unties us and with nav lights on we slip our mooring and head under the railway bridge. At barely a little over tick over I head towards the bridge. My friend at this point steps away from the cockpit area and stays still, so as not to unsettle the boat at any point, and to allow me to concentrate and line us up for the bridge. It's a well rehearsed procedure that neither of us even thinks twice about anymore. Not for the first time in the dark I head downstream towards the bridge and with masses of clearance we glide under and past the Hotel Wroxham and the staff clearing up from the evening's trade. My friend reappears and asks if I want a glass of Red and then goes to select a bottle for a celebratory drink. We continue our journey slowly downstream and the first part is very easy gliding past the old Moore's site and Barnes until the harder part arrives. No not the tree lined banks, the endless floodlight after floodlight that are either left permanently on or flash on as you trip the infra red's. These people have obviously never navigated a boat after dark, and certainly not through Wroxham / Hoveton. To be fair, it is marginally better than normal because it is the closed fishing season. No anglers with 100W LED head lamps that look up from the water and directly in your direction and blind you. Eventually we reach the easy part, the darkness of the tree lined banks where once my night vision returns I am able to see clearly the twists and turns of the river. The entrance to Wroxham Broad approaches, as does a rather nice glass of Malbec and we turn into Wroxham Broad and cruise along the inside towards the other exit. Keeping a close eye out for buoys and the odd surprised swan we continue on our way until back out on the River Bure. The dampness is coming down and it's feeling colder, but still very pleasant cruising. As ever with night cruising we leave the windscreen and the roof down to gain the best possible night vision and continue on our way down the Bure. The Red is starting to cool a little too much in the damp air, but before too long we are at Salhouse, our destination for the night. We turn right into Salhouse and then right again to a nice empty spot and my friend dons his life jacket and goes to drop the mud weight. I set about putting the windscreen and roof up and before too long we are settled in the saloon chatting over a night cap of a small glass of port and discussing our chances of getting through that bridge! TBC
  7. 5 points
    Please don't stop, it's nice to have your logical factual input in these such things such input helps adjust the scales.
  8. 5 points
    If you read the reports that were submitted prior to the purchase you'll find that the Breydon rangers were consulted, as was the Head Ranger. The advice of an independent marine surveyor was sought and the NavCom was also involved, so pinning blame on any individual is rather difficult. Perhaps it was just one of those unknown unknowns, from which lessons can be learned. I doubt very much whether it was a deliberate decision to buy something that would prove to be so mechanically unreliable. As has been said, it doesn't reflect well on the very reputable local firm that supplied it. I have no doubt that they have tried their very best to obtain the parts, as they well know that some people have very long memories and this will not easily be forgotten.
  9. 4 points
    Waking on Womack water in the sunshine is an heavenly experience, made even more heavenly by the canvas wheelhouse sides and the new curtains. The sun gently heats the wheelhouse and the curtains prevent the creation of a blisteringly hot greenhouse at 07:30 am. We awoke to more delightful cabin ceiling reflections and some quacking, some little tiny webbed feet padding up and down the cabin roof and some raucus quacks, followed by some more waddling. Fiona and I listened to this duck dance on the roof and both of us smiled, giggled then burst out laughing at the duck antics taking place above us. Today was Easter Saturday and we were off to Coltishal, well off at some point as the bed was very warm and inviting and Fiona had nipped out to put the kettle on. After returning to snuggly duvet warmness Fiona remarked that we have a lovely new galley layout, a lovely new cooker with smoked glass lid and the grottiest whistling kettle possible. Charlie Dolphin had bought us this kettle (red with whistle) nearly 9 years ago when we first fitted out Malanka with plates, glasses and the usual stuff. The poor thing had seen better days, the paint was chipped and the whistle was now more of a subdued warble than the shrill “oi water is hot dopey” one expects from a whistling kettle. With this debate held Fiona and I started a search to determine the kettle’s successor. Whilst this debate had taken place the warble from the galley had gone unnoticed and so behind the galley curtain there were clouds of steam seeking escape via the open galley windows. A while later tea had been made, and various happy local pig products consumed in an oven bottom muffin of course. It was time to leave. Now leaving sounds like an easy thing and you would be correct, however we had placed a mudweight over the stern to prevent “swingage” (was the term used yesterday to justify said action). Removing the mudweight from the bow with the aid of the windlass was an easy thing. Removing the mudweight so delicately dangled from the stern the previous evening was a different prospect entirely. Malanka’s mudweights weigh in at 25kg and when stuck fast, as the little darling over the stern most certainly was, they are immovable by hand. Engine power it was to be then. Charlie moved to the helm position and she delicately moved the boat forwards for about 6 feet then nope not moving, definitely not moving, forget it sunshine we’re not moving. Mud churning, mid-range revs from the 79hp bmc and still no we shall not be moved matey. Charlie angled the boat to the left and added some power and we moved a little, reversed the angle and again the same result, this time with bubbles. Success we were free. I hauled the miscreant mudweight on board in one final heave ho and deposited the disgustingly smelly muddy beast onto the deck onto a quickly deposited tea towel. Shoulders aching and hands burning I decided to deal with that smelly lump later when we arrived in Coltishal. With such a beautiful day playing out in front of us of course it was top down and pootle to Wroxham. So we pootled to horning, there was a little breeze but nothing to stop my shorts campaign from continuing. Heading to Horning The day was glorious quite warm out of the biting breeze and we made our way to Wroxham broad where we stopped the boat mid broad to permit me to dismast the boat and store the mast on the bow. We measured the new airdraft with Phil and after the work done and all the new chines and planking she now sits 6ft 5 inches at the peak of the pulpit rail and just under 6ft 5 inches at the wheelhouse roof vents with the roof down. With the roof up she is just under 8 ft now also. So mast removed and ducks and flowers on the floor of the wheelhouse we headed to the bridge. The bridge was measuring just under 7ft as we were quite near the low water mark but we knew this would not be an issue, and so it proved. The bridge cleared we headed up to Coltishal, aiming for the lock. After a very pleasant pootle upriver and after spotting three kingfishers we rounded the corner by the Rising Sun and headed for the lock. We noticed that the river here was particularly low, which accounted for the current as we passed through the bridge which was quite signifcant. We were making no more than 3.0 mph and could clearly see the bottom. When we arrived at the the lock the water was so low that we made the decision that to avoid sitting on the jutting shelf that’s there overnight we would move back to the common and moor there. We returned to the common, spun in the river and approached the mooring against the flow, gently gliding into a stop. Charlie handled the bow line and I took care of the stern lines. Sorted.. Time to relax and enjoy a glass of chilled rose. During a lovely afternoon we met with Boaters who passed by to say hello and we had a lovely catch up with him. The felties also met a fox terrier and said hello to him too. After a lovely if somewhat warm afternoon it was soon shower time before dinner. We were eating on tonight which was to be stuffed chicken breast with butter rice and green beans. The meal was lovely and the sunset simply amazing. The felties certainly enjoyed it. Once again we had a beautiful day, the weather was as good as it gets in April and we were content. It was time for bed. When Fiona and I had arrived we had purchased three new DVDs fully intending to watch Bohemian Rhapsody at some point. Needless to say the weather was so unexpectedly nice we were failing to stay awake much past 9pm and so it proved again today. Tomorrow we would head down to Wroxham. The day broke to more sunshine and the barometer falling off the high end of the scale, so it was going to be warm again, it would also later prove to be widy enough to trouble Doug of Brundle Navy fame but more about that later. (Sorry Doug……) We had a lazy start to the day as we didn’t really intend to go very far and it wouldn’t take us all day to get to Salhouse where we intended to spend the evening. With that in mind we had breakfast several mugs of tea and turned on the immersion for one of the ladies to wash their hair. The issue of the kettle came up again so we decided to replace the item with a brand new one in Wroxham later on. We had an event free and slooooow bimble downriver, the main incident being application of spray sunscreen iin the wheelhouse, as with most things spray it went almost everywhere except on my forearms which were the intended target area. We were approaching two hours by the time we arrived in Worxham and moored up to the public moorings by the information centre. Charlie elected to stay with the boat so Fiona and I could go do our thing and go to Roys for more food and to find a new whistling kettle. We looked in Roys but decided not to part with a kidney to purchase a new kettle and so we headed to Norfolk marine in the what we thought was a belated hope of finding something inexpensive in the kettle line that whistled.. Success as they had just the item required for the princely sum of 12 of her majesty’s pounds, it was even burgundy/red so it fitted in with the décor. A delighted spring in our steps we returned to the boat to find Charlie deep in conversation with Hele and Doug, we knew that Nipper had her bottom hanging out so it was something of a surprise to see Hele on the broads this weekend. Cutting a long story quite short, Hele wasn’t feeling 100% and so quick as a flash we said, “nothing planned this afternoon? Good let’s go for a trip on the river!” The pair of them quickly agreed, who wouldn’t as it was a glorious day with strong sun beating down. So doggies secured in the wheelhouse, drinkies refreshed all round we cast off and headed for the bridge. VIDEO-2019-04-20-20-28-48.mp4 We didn’t know it until a few hours later but a person unknown to us took a picture from the footbridge that later appeared on the BBC website celebrating the hottest day of the year so far. My brother in the US saw it and texted us a screenshot. All very good fun as we made our way to Ranworth Island at a steady two donkey power to have a spot of lunch. A spot of lunch in an ad hoc situation like this is whatever we have in the fridge chucked on a tray with some nibbles… Shortly after the bridge, I offered Doug the helm and he gladly accepted, where he stayed until we moored side on at Ranworth Island in a little bit of a tricky breeze. We had a lovely chat bimbling down the river, Doug says he was impressed with Malanka’s handling which I have always liked but I don’t have much experience of other peoples woodies so I couldn’t comment. It’s smooth, easy and light to the touch, arent they all like that? Glossing over how many attempts we had to get moored up, all that matters is that eventually we did and we had a wonderful afternoon in the company of three great friends (five if you count the woofs). After lunch we returned Doug and Hele to Wroxham via a “drop and go” at the pilots station then we slowly headed back to Salhouse to drop the mudweight in a favourite spot out of the breeze and sit and watch the sun go down whilst we planned and cooked dinner. Lazing whilst dinner cooked itself. Dinner was roast beef with roast potatoes, green beans and yorkshires with gravy……. Dinner was amazing and the beef provided me with lunch for many successive days of medium rare roast beef sandwiches. We had a most wonderful day, Doug, Hele and Charlie all hopefully enjoying the trip down the river and some lovely company. Definitely something to do again sometime. The next day we would have to say goodbye to Charlie Dolphin and drop her back in Stalham to pick up her car, so we were extra determined to have a good day before she left us.
  10. 4 points
    How about one of these. Its a hover craft that flies. Great for over mud or water. Can hold 4 people. If they are going to waste my money then this would be fun to watch. Colin
  11. 3 points
    I don't often do holiday tales, but having been accused today of ratcheting up pressure on the BA, apparently in a pompous and dogmatic way, that and seeing the water clarification project thread, I thought it was time to turn my hand to a holiday tale, partly by way of an explanation. Just over two weeks ago I headed to the boat with a friend to spend a week aboard. After spending the first day catching up with a few jobs and spending the first night in the marina we headed out on the Sunday to travel North for the week. Sunday night saw us nestled on The Bridge Inn moorings and a few pints and a very enjoyable meal, whilst we discussed plans for the rest of the week. Now normally at this stage we would discuss a route that involved a trundle up to Potter to check the bridge height in the hope that we might get through and plans for when we didn't. My boat is an ex hire boat, and was built to pass that bridge on occasion. Since it has been in my ownership it has passed that bridge about five times, but not for about four years now. Anyway for some reason we made our plans and never even considered Potter bridge and beyond. The plan was for Coltishall on Monday evening and to try out The Rising Sun which is now in the hands of Colchester Inns. For those that don't know, the same group that run The Recruiting Sargant and The Ship South Walsham. Monday morning see us up early as we knew the noise from the road bridge would mean little chance of a lie in. Coffee machine on and cast off and head towards South Walsham to drop the mud weight and enjoy breakfast. A thoroughly enjoyable breakfast done and it was time to cast off and continue our journey. The empty moorings outside The Ferry and it being lunchtime meant it was rude not to stop and part with some cash. Ever mindful of our final destination we didn't spend too long there and cast off to continue our journey. A very pleasant cruise towards Wroxham and as we headed into Wroxham, we were absolutely gob smacked and couldn't believe what we saw. 7ft7in clearance under Wroxham bridge! Yes that's right 7ft 7ins! We both looked at each other and at the same time said, "we never even consider Potter bridge this trip, what clearance is there under Potter?" My boat only needs 6ft6in under Wroxham, slightly less if I'm feeling really brave. My record so far is 6ft 4.5ins and never again at that. Any way we continued to Coltishall and enjoyed a thoroughly good meal in The Rising Sun. Perhaps not quite the standard of their other pubs, but given it's mass market location, still very good. A definite improvement and we shall be going back. The next morning dawned and so did a phone call to the pilot. Low water is still a few hours away and we have 6ft9in clearance. Give the pilot the name of my boat when it was in hire and he confirmed we need 6ft 9in. Wahay! I know that Pat took it under at less than that, but I'm happy when there're happy. Weather is looking fine for the next couple of days and we deliberate on whether to alter our plan which was for Tuesday night in Wroxham and give Liberty a chance in it's new disguise, or head straight to Potter. Wednesday had been planned for going up the Ant, but that would definitely be Potter if we didn't go Tuesday. Tuesday morning dawned nice and sunny and we had remembered the EA gauge at Repps and clearance was still holding good and potentially improving slightly so we opted for Wroxham Tuesday night. A very good meal was had in Liberty and I can only say that it really doesn't compare to last year's meal. Not sure if it is still the same owners as rumoured, but they have done more than just try to bury the bad reputation. The food and service is chalk and cheese. Sitting at the table just finishing dinner and talk turns to heading to Potter the next day for that bridge! We are moored at the Viaduct moorings and we could stay there, or perhaps take a night cruise to a more peaceful mooring! The trains do rumble through quite early. It's dark outside but little alcohol has been consumed, the bridge clearance is still really good at Wroxham and the thought of passing the bridge whilst it's quiet and without the day boats etc, buzzing around is just too appealing. TBC
  12. 3 points
    You didn’t tell me you had a winch for the mudweight, it felt like I had done 20 minutes in the gym by the time it was onboard. Many thanks for the lovely trip on board it was just what Hele needed as she has been through a difficult few months lately. No Martin not all woodies are as smooth as Malanka, try a trip on Royal Tudor sometime
  13. 3 points
    Two rangers and a hiding CEO
  14. 3 points
    Whooo hooo! Good news! I have just been talking with Kelly, the Ranger who says there is another event at the Broad on Saturday from 10 to 3. This is the 50th Birthday of the Great Hoveton Nature Trail. There will be a steel band, probably playing as we come in ...cool? There are exhibitions from various and a Dog Water Rescue demo. there is also a ferry running across to the Reserve and a coffee trailer, which is a new feature at the broad. We still get our preferred mooring at the bottom of the hill there and can put our tentage on the flat bit as we decided after last year. I have paid £10 per boat so will collect that on Sat PM. Robin, I think that gives us a bit of leeway on setting up our music for later, and I have called Sally and Richard to say the timings no longer work for them, they will give us extra time next year instead.
  15. 3 points
    I’m afraid I don’t know all ecologists or even almost all and so I wouldn’t know what to agree with or disagree with. But perhaps you might wish to discuss with the hundreds of ecologists you have canvassed on the topic the relative turbidity’s of the North Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Basin then relate that in terms of productivity. N.B. You will be surprised, I know I was when I found out this fact 38 years ago. Never a good idea to make an appeal from Authority especially one based on a fictional extended quotation, which if you care to research further will soon discover are both logical fallacies. When you presume to say “a healthy underwater environment” ask for which species, the fluffy cuddly ones or the ones that turn the water into a “turgid stew” whatever that is supposed to mean? If what you meant to say was that you would prefer to see the water as clear as it was many many decades ago then just say that, please don’t decorate your desires, as justified and fully supported by me they may be, with fictitious or presumed agreement from “ almost all ecologists”. It lessens your argument as the use of “scientists say” does which is usually then followed by something that in fact not many scientists would or even have said. Clearer which in terms of this debate is perhaps the wrong word, is a better environment for some fish and some plants, however bogs are great too and have a diverse and thriving system in their dark and murky depths. It’s just not recognized as pretty or popular with the BA who have set their criteria as plant diversity and density levels. Clear waters with oodles of plant growth will present a whole raft of new issues the BA currently do not have to deal with with the exception of a few higher reaches. What you are discussing is a reduction in the dispersed algal population. Not great for the algae but fish are more marketable i’ll admit. Give Barton chance and the nitrate / phosphate reduction and control measures will work on their own. The water didn’t become a turgid stew overnight, black water tanks and fertilizer control measures will work. Eventually. You are correct in that high impact immediate actions will not work on their own as the water system soon returns to its climax state after the pressure in one direction is removed via the natural equilibrium of natural systems. To give them a boost “ if that is what we want” is long term and very very expensive. Personally I would prefer to see more dredging with the money available and leave the water system to recover slowly and sustainably ( cheaply) to a new equilibrium climax state all by itself.
  16. 2 points
    Almost a repeat of last year but Tuesday to Tuesday this time. There will be a link to the video added later (lots of editing to do). Saw plenty of wildlife, goslings, duckings, one coot, Grebes nesting, a few Marsh Harriers and plenty of Herons. This was our third time with Swan Roamer, next time is June and then we have her booked twice in 2020 (we do like this boat). We did see the Irstead Ranger about quite a bit, probably far more than in previous years. Weather was rather mixed ranging from sunshine through rain and then hail, chilly most of the time but still enjoyable, if Easter hadn’t been so late this year we would have had the glorious sunshine that earlier visitors enjoyed. Tuesday 30th April Left home far too early really but I was unsure what the traffic would be like on a weekday but once we cleared the Milton junction on the A14 it was pretty much 70mph all the way (except roundabouts!!) As usual we stopped in Hoveton (Wroxham) for the toilets (parked in Roy’s car park), proceeded to Womack for sandwiches and coffee then made our way to Richardsons at about 12:15. We knew that checkin didn’t open until 13:00 now but it gave us chance to have a wander around the yard and locate Swan Roamer. Noticed a new sedan boat outside the build sheds, not sure if it is the long rumoured one or not. It looked as if there were a lot of boats not out (or going out) which tended to confirm what I had seen on Hoseasons web site and the general rumours that trade is down this year. Once checked in the instructor showed us round the boat, we asked for an extra rope, blanket and lump hammer (we couldn’t see the latter two on board but subsequently found them, we were glad to have two blankets most nights though). Once signed off (no trial run since we are regulars) and the boat loaded we left the yard at about 13:45. We headed down the Ant with the intention of mooring at Irstead if possible (no such luck) or continue to How Hill which was to be. Good mooring near the cottage and then a walk up to the grassed area where some some photographs of the vegetation were taken, I had been hoping for a few early Damselflies and Butterflies but no such luck, I guess the chilly weather has delayed everything. Once back on the boat we finished unpacking and then thought about tea of Chilli (brought with us frozen) and rice. Hoping for a good sunset but again this was not to be so quite an early night (as is our wont on the Broads) at about 21:00. How Hill staithe stayed quite empty all night, in fact we found that all moorings were half empty every day and the rivers very quiet until the weekend. Wednesday 1st May Left How Hill just after 08:00 and decided to head for Womack with the intention of having the Carvery at the Kings Arms this evening. We made a detour down to South Walsham to Russell’s for water (still only £1), some dredging going on down Fleet Dyke and Russell’s quay heading not good. 9ft under Ludham Bridge. Arrived at Womack to find plenty of room and moored alongside Swan Rapide, two boats away from us on the other side there was a large blue boat that I initially thought was private but in fact it was one of Broom’s large new ones, very smart it looks too. Got talking to the couple on Swan Rapide who were not happy about the foot of the beds having restricted space and being freezing cold plus a very deep step as you entered the boat, I have subsequently looked at the layout of this boat and it really doesn’t look good. Noticed a Grebe’s nest opposite and spent the afternoon mainly watching the male tidying the nest up which the female was sitting on, at this stage we weren’t sure if the eggs had hatched or not. Later in the afternoon the guy on the boat now moored in Swan Rapide’s spot came up to me to say he recognised me from our videos and was looking forward to this years. In the end we decided not to eat out this evening. After the problem getting the mud weight up last year I had decided that it wasn’t necessary with the wind being so light. The staithe was pretty much full but most boats were a little spread out so there would have been space for another one or two but no arriving boats seemed too concerned. Thursday 2nd May Topped up with water and left Womack at about 08:15 having decided on Neatishead for tonight. Once clear of the staithe we very slowly approached the Grebe’s nest (not too close) and took some video and photographs, it was now apparent that the chicks had hatched but probably only just, we did keep well clear so as not to disturb them which is more that some boats had done yesterday when they must have gone quite close at speed without noticing the nest. Saw a few Kingfishers up the Ant and when on Barton Broad I checked (again) to see if any boats were following me and didn’t see anything but as we were about three quarters the way across a Broadlander came past us at what must have been full throttle, he then disappeared into Lime Kiln Dyke. It always amazes me when people complain that they use a lot of fuel (over and above their fuel deposit even) but have been cruising all day and at speed, keep the revs down and these boats are very economical. We proceeded through the narrow section meeting several cruisers and Nancy Oldfield boats coming down and arrived at the staithe to find plenty of space, went in forward and moored one boat length in from the end. Shortly after our arrival three Barnes boats approached (2 Rhapsodies and one Lullaby), they were obviously together and all got safely moored, it transpired that they were a party of Germans (with a couple of English) who were on a company outing, presumably a team building exercise. By late afternoon the three Barnes boats left and then others came up until the Staithe was full again. Beware, there is a very grumpy Swan at Neatishead (we also saw one at Sutton Staithe, could be the same one) that will try to eat your boat, ropes and shoes, even tried to get on our bathing platform. We went to the White Horse for dinner which was good, as normal, Claire had the battered fish while I opted for the ham with eggs, there was far too much ham for me although I did eat it all. I do wish though that they didn’t serve Coleslaw with most dishes, I hate it. Friday 3rd May Rain was forecast for all day and after I topped the water up and left Neatishead it started. We were going to go to Ranworth and/or Cockshoot but decided to go back to Womack since it is cleaner there when wet than either of the other two. Nothing else to report this day. Saturday 4th May Once topped up with water again we left Womack, destination Sutton Staithe. There were a fair number of boats about now being Bank Holiday weekend and we met a few coming down the Ant with children standing and dancing on the top of them, some with lifejackets some without, really makes you wonder sometimes. When we got to the last corner before Ludham Bridge I could see a boat on the other side with his stern partially blocking the opening with another boat waiting upstream of the bridge to come through as soon as there was space, once the other boat had got through we then proceeded and found that the current through the bridge was quite strong (combination of wind and tide) meaning plenty of throttle was necessary. It was now quite windy and Barton Broad was fairly choppy with some white horses, Short sharp showers of rain and then later very heavy hail, I was glad that we had demisters for the windscreen. There was plenty of space at Sutton Staithe and we moored well down the first section where it was fairly sheltered. A lot of heavy hail showers throughout the afternoon making the decks treacherous if you ventured out. Met our grumpy Swan again (if it is the same one). Sunday 5th May This morning was pump out day even though the indicator light said it was still ok so it was a trip round the corner to Richardsons for this and to fill up with water. We were unsure where we were going today but thought Irstead would be nice but space availability was doubtful. As we went back down Stalham Dyke a Kingfisher was spotted so it was a quick stop of the boat and Claire managed to get a short piece of video before the bird flew. Irstead was indeed full so we went past, then a short way down stream of Irstead two Otters were spotted swimming straight towards the boat but they dived before Claire could pick up a camera. We carried on cruising down well past How Hill and then turned thinking we will go to Gays Staithe. As we approached Irstead again we could see it was completely empty so we moored in the inner section and pulled the boat as far forward as possible in order to give space for another 30ft boat behind us (Roamer is marked at 35ft but I think it is nearer 36). Shortly afterwards a private boat moored on the outer section and then another small private boat moored behind us for an hour or so. A whole bunch of canoeists arrived and had a bit to eat and a rest, it transpired they were from a London canoe club and were up for the weekend camping near Dilham. Later in the evening a 42/45ft bathtub decided he was going to moor behind us, he tried and ended up touching our stern with his stern on the quay heading of the private house next to the staithe on the downstream side, I had a quiet word with him and advised that there really wasn’t enough space after which he gently edged away and went towards Barton Broad. Monday 6th May Having left Irstead we went to Barton Turf for water and then had a gentle meander up to Wayford Bridge where we stopped for some lunch. Although I was tempted with Dilham we didn’t make any attempt to pass under Wayford Bridge because it was only reading just over 7ft and Roamer is marked as 7ft and when having the pump out the day before Richardsons said they had had a boat stuck under the bridge on Saturday. On our way back downstream we had to avoid two large pieces of tree mid-stream just down from the boatyard. Went on down across Barton Broad again to Gays Staithe where we moored for the afternoon. Orca came in for water so had a short chat with Alan & Dave (JawsOrca). About 15:30 we unmoored and took a slow amble up to Stalham, getting on to Heron Quay was a bit of a challenge with boats going out but finally we got onto the quay, there were an awful lot of boats in so maybe business is slow at the moment. It rained on and off all evening again. Tuesday 7th May Woke up early again and it was still raining, once packed and everything back in the car the boat was refuelled and we went to the office to checkout. We got nearly £110 back from our £150 Fuel Deposit so just over £40 worth of diesel used, ok, we had only done about 4 hours gentle cruising each day at less than about 1400 revs but the heating had been on every evening and morning (no engine started, batteries good) when we got up. Just shows, with no speeding and taking it easy how little diesel is used. The drive home was uneventful, Sat Nav (not needed but just in case diversion was necessary) was showing heavy congestion on the A14 at Cambridge but by the time we got there it was clear. I will add a link to the video in a week or so and then our next visit is in June, hoping for better weather then with Butterflies and Dragonflies.
  17. 2 points
    So if, for example, the CEO made the decision on his own (or in consultation with the Chair's Committee), he would be pilloried. That a fairly lengthy and wide consultation process was actually carried out is also criticised. These rather irrational criticisms of the BA tend to stifle serious debate, it's not even funny any more, so I think I won't waste my time seeking out and bringing useful information here any more.
  18. 2 points
    I am quite happy to put my neck on the line and say in all probability i think “waiting for engine spares” is a big fat lie and it dawned on them long ago that it wasn't any use where they were trying to use it and they are trying to quietly get shot of it drawing as little attention as possible.......
  19. 2 points
    But does it have facilities for the crew such as toilet and galley, and more importantly a large after deck on which the CEO can be interviewed by local media?
  20. 2 points
    something like this perhaps?
  21. 1 point
    I'm kinda agreeing with you. However it should be a level / same palying field for all and it obviously isn't As for a problem, I don't see it as a bona fide problem as of yet - More of an annoyance Griff
  22. 1 point
    It is nothing to do with it being "unsuitable" - it is almost certainly an engine issue which cannot be fixed. But I know no more - others may. As Pally has suggested the reputable firm who supplied it have been involved since the start - over the coming months I suspect we may learn more but as has been pointed out, trying to blame the CE directly seems a waste of breath and further speculation without more info probably a waste of time! I am sure I have said something that can easily be picked to pieces - off you go and do your worst!
  23. 1 point
    That the vessel was unfit for purpose has been talked of many times and my tendency is to agree that it is. However, if reliability is the issue, the great Dr would be ill advised to re-engine it if he too feels that he was given a "bum steer" when purchasing it, so "damned if he does, damned if he don't" springs to mind. There are many unknowns. What was the brief given to the consultants? Who wrote that brief? etc.etc. As far as unloading it goes, he will want to do so as quietly as possible, perhaps not to keep his critics uninformed, but to keep the "genuine reason for sale" quiet from the buyer. Perhaps the price tag is low because of it's problems. again, no win for the Dr. Either way I'll still crack my jokes and hold him in low regard until he proves himself worthy of better.
  24. 1 point
    "lets get as many people in on the consultation as we can, then any blame can be spread a lot thinner"- you mean?
  25. 1 point
    The hallmark of many Quangos
  26. 1 point
    I wonder if the Acle debAcle will last any longer?
  27. 1 point
    At the January 17 NavCom meeting, a report on the Launch Replacement Programme was submitted. SoB is shown as due for replacement during the period 2041 - 2046. The condition report says, "Hull and structure in good condition. Replacement parts required for the engine are on a long delivery time which has compromised operational availability." Perhaps the difficulty in getting replacement parts has proved too much and a decision has been made to bite the bullet and sell the vessel now, rather than to limp on with increased absences from duty. The boat was supplied by a very reputable company, so I find this latest problem rather surprising. I'm not sure that any blame can be laid at the BA's door. I'm not sure, without knowing exactly what the supply problem is, that I would want to do any finger-pointing at all. Where is it being advertised for sale?
  28. 1 point
    if it's a light wind race and there is a log jam of boats early on, it will really hit the hot rods.. if it's at least a reaomsonable wind they shouldn't have too much problem. The slow boats if they can make it to Ant mouth out of the trees before being overtaken will greatly benefit.
  29. 1 point
    Apparently the Spirit of Breydon is up for sale, offers in the region of 80K! A very expensive mistake or, as some might suggest, vanity project.
  30. 1 point
    Sorry peeps it will be back but will be a few weeks... Its lost its WiFi connection 👎
  31. 1 point
    What a kind and gentle soul you are my friend. Hopefully your friend returns patched up and we will see you on Friday. Oh and get that boat washed, saw it a couple of weeks ago and couldn’t read the reg numbers........ M
  32. 1 point
    It was a funny old day yesterday! My mate with whom I lodge had an epileptic fit (to use it's old fashioned name) and gave himself a rather nasty gash on his bonce. I took him to A&E and they've kept him in. He is the carer to his 90 year old mother and not surprisingly she went into meltdown. so for the moment I'm looking after her. My mate expects to be discharged today, but if he isn't, I might be delayed coming to the meet as I'm not going to leave here until I'm sure stability has been restored.
  33. 1 point
    Ah Reedling class Number 2 Siskin, on it's way on a down river race with Horning sailing club. Nothing to worry about, follow down the right hand bank , when the sailing boat in front turns away from the right hand bank, go forward, passing behind. If they come back for a second try at your side, don't worry, they'll turn away (might be close) they can't win their race if they've broken their boat by hitting you.. My day was however spent building a hard top for my trailer so I can transport my model railway to Hoveton Village hall for our Open day on 26th May 10:30-15:30. Sadly we have to charge £3:00 for entry (£2 for concessions) as we've got to pay for the hire of the hall..we should have 7 to 10 layouts (most running some under construction) our second hand stall, our loco repair expert if you've got a non runner, and a tea bar.
  34. 1 point
    We had a Swan on the River Cam a year or so ago called 'Mr ASBO' that was notorious for attacking rows, I think it was finally caught and removed don't know where they sent though.
  35. 1 point
    Good tale thank you. Only one thing wrong with it which for your convenience I have highlighted. :-)
  36. 1 point
    I'll have to find the time to read through, although quickie.. Malanka is gorgeous, I know we've seen her a couple of times and she's certainly a head turner.. I can see she's flying a Broom flag too :) Thanks for being her custodian and keeping her looking amazing.. The broads is so much more with these woodies.
  37. 1 point
    Hi YT, many thanks. It looks like Simon, Cambridge Cabby can bring it, your help in getting it offloaded and pitched would be much appreciated.
  38. 1 point
    Great tale...more please! Love the Felties
  39. 1 point
    A slightly stressful outbound journey today navigating through the sailies but a lovely return journey
  40. 1 point
    Take it she isn`t used to a ramp at all, give her all the time she needs to make adjustments and she might just surprise you. Good luck.
  41. 1 point
    Early Bank Holiday 2019 Saturday 4th May. All threw the week I was really hoping on getting up to Norfolk on the Friday after work but in complete comparison than the Easter bank holiday the weather sadly was looking to be typical bank holiday weekend weather, so we abandoned that idea and planned to get up for Saturday instead. The weather as we left home looked perfect with lovely blue sky but fluffy white clouds, the temperature had also taken a kicking and it was below 10dc with that strong and even colder north wind. As we entered east anglia though the heavens did indeed open and the hail let rip, it was a bit random with hail one moment then blue sky effectively all the way up the A11. Thankfully as we arrived at the boat the rain has stopped but the wind was strong and we decided it was a little too strong to really get away from the berth whilst its that windy, I noticed the forecast hinted that it was due to slowly reduce into the evening so we decided to do a few things on the boat and head into Norwich for some dinner. Dave got straight on and repaired the port airhorn, easy fix a blown fuse! The starboard truck actual air horn, the motor had died, I had brought a new one up but it was too much work to replace being an electric replacement so that's for another day! I'd grabbed a transom fender for the swimdeck so Dave sorted that out. I found some little flags for our new masthead including a little Norfolk county to proudly fly and also a Kent county as Orca is registered here in Rochester. Also after some time of not having a NBN burgee I put that on. We also got a new action camera (like a gopro) so I scratched to work out where to mount that, kinda settled on the masthead just below the anchor light. Dave quickly installed some new mooring rings on the pontoon and a cool big soft fluffy corner fender for the pontoon which I wanted so I can look forward to that when we get back to the berth. All sorted needed food. We wasn't sure what to do, I had an old mate Greg (Dave, John, Bob, whatever his name is ;) )on speed dial who is a tractor loving local and I'd hope can offer some recommendations, he started with the Fur and feather but no thats a "boat pub" (only visited when we are on the boat), next was a Mexican in Norwich which sounded funky, then finally he mentioned a quirky fish and chip restaurant in a pub but you get to sit in the vaults below.. That ticked the boxes, we aimed for there. It was already late afternoon when Dave crashed the car into the tiny bays in St giles carpark, bang in the central of Norwich but around the corner from FSH at the Grosvenor, we ordered two cod and chips at the bar and ventured down a dark set of steps into the vaults of the pub, the food was fab and the place very quirky indeed, top marks to Greg for the tip! We had a quick wander around, sadly most places were shutting up for the evening but we headed to a little shop which is my favourite, it's just infront of the forum and is a shop selling all movie and game memorabilia, very quirky again and we grabbed a Fallout Nukacola cup for Orca ;) It felt like the wind had started to calm down so we waved good bye to Norwich. For some unknown reason Dave wanted to check out the Horsey beach and have a quick walk, I must admit it was bitterly cold and sounded like a stupid idea to me but I could do with some fresh air. Entering the Car park there was no other souls about, the car door almost blew off the car when I opened it and the sound of an unhappy north sea was deafening, We've really not heard it that loud before Dave went up onto the cliffs and I went down and yeah the waves were huge and breaking pretty much right onto the dunes, it was pretty scary to watch the power of the sea but thankfully the wind made for a short stay. Back to the boat at last, the wind had indeed dropped right off here and allowed for us to leave the berth without too much fear. Engine on and indeed no contact made at all we was soon on the River heading south. I wasn't sure what to do but it was gone 8pm and kinda fancied heading down a bit as to make the most of the weekend. As we crossed Barton broad the sun was starting to dip below the horizon and the fluffy storm clouds now pestering further south just looked pretty cool. Irstead had a Gap but didn't quite fancy spending the night there, I had How hill in my head and then we could have an early morning stroll in the morning. Indeed I spotted a gap right at the end just beside the windmill and with the last bit of sun just setting behind it left for some neat pictures with Orca all lit up. A busy but productive first day but a better day than expected with the pesky bank holiday weather.
  42. 1 point
    Long live pomposity and dogma!! Good tale though.
  43. 1 point
    Because Grendel my friend they have absolutely no idea what will actually result. A few questions first of all. 1.why is there a presupposition that clear waters are preferable? 2. Who decided 1 on the basis of what? 3. As clear and or murky waters have completely different micro ecologies why is it a good idea to suppress one in favor of another unless in an attempt to provide a habit for species not YET resident in the area is the goal? 4. What is the goal of all these projects to introduce apex predators into what are artificial however reasonably stable ecosystems. Sea Eagles to the Isle of Wight, Ospreys and so on? Maybe someone doesn’t like how successful the otters have been or maybe they didn’t figure out how successful they would be. For an Apex predator anything that’s within its weight capability is a target, lambs, small dogs, otters, geese, ducks, wildfowl in general. It wasn’t long ago we were talking about where have all the wildfowl gone and now more raptors ? If as the article claims the initial causes of the algal population levels have now been removed or as they say controlled then why is this necessary at all. Leave it alone it will clear in its own time as anyone with a large pond can tell them, unless there is another reason? Who knows.. Oh well who am I to question? Better to just keep my head down in “open forum” and let my betters decide eh? M
  44. 1 point
    Yes, it was there for some time. I would imagine Vaughan knows more about it.
  45. 1 point
    Within the Brundall area we have, A partially burnt boat that has been abandoned on Surlingham Broad since last summer. A yacht left on Church Fen 24 hour moorings since before Easter, the local yoofs have taken an interest in it, i chased them off and photographed Saturday evening. These two untolled vessels will be more expensive to refloat than they will be be tow away. Two areas of the river still substantially obstructed by fallen trees. A collection of boats that have obscured reg numbers and no tolls, again. However, these things cost money to rectify, no point in pursuing boats that are continually untolled as the costs will never be recovered, far better to spend a considerable time and effort sending rangers out to check if reg numbers are displayed in accordance with the authority's latest whim, not the bye laws but a recently interpreted 'guidance' leaflet that is now the third version in a few years. How to win friends and influence people. NOT.
  46. 1 point
    I think I have figured a solution that would satisfy the bylaws to the letter at least.
  47. 1 point
  48. 1 point
    Yesterday was Tan's inquest so not a great for us, but we do have some sort of closure. Regards Alan
  49. 1 point
    I am with you Gracie, he does nothing for me. Regards Alan
  50. 0 points
    Doug, she is a lot better now than she was coming from Martham, that was brute force and ignorance, since we replaced the cable she is a lot lighter to steer. but in marthams shed out of the water she was so hard to steer that I broke the cable.
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