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About BryanW

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    Norfolk Broads

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  1. I am very surprised at this, we have charged toothbrushes, shavers, phones, cameras and camcorders from the 240v inverter supply on numerous boats including Swan Roamer and Swan Radiance and never had a problem. Could it have been pure coincidence?
  2. I have a fold down table that would be ideal if anybody is re-fitting a bath tub and has space against a bulkhead for a small eating area. Overall size is 52cm deep (from wall) by 81cm wide, the actual folding section is 41cm by 81cm. Unfortunately this would need collecting from Cambridge (north side, just off the A14). I am not in a rush to get rid of it but eventually it will go to the tip which seems a shame.
  3. We do like Roamer and it does mean a very short handover. No offence taken. We have our favourite spots but do like the section above Wroxham but would not want to essentially waste two days in a week going south. Wroxham Bridge can be a problem with the height of Roamer at 7ft but recently the weather (and bridge clearance) has not been our friend, we did intend to try this time and also wanted Cockshoot but decided that it would be too wet and cold for any insects be about.
  4. On Swan Roamer (identical to Rapture except the stern) we also employ 'pump-out delaying techniques' as per Griff's quote in the past. When starting on a Saturday we have a pump out on Wednesday and if starting on Tuesday we make it Sunday. These toilets do use a lot of water and it would be very useful to know how many flushes you have then you could count or if you knew the holding tank capacity you good make an estimate of the number. On Roamer in addition to the big red lamp there is a much smaller light in the push button panel which we have never seen change from green, it may also be an indicator that might change to amber and then red, I don't know. A Richardson's engineer did tell me that the electric hook-up just powers a battery charger but the cable is quite short so the stern needs to be very close to the electric post as I found out the other week The only indication you will see in the boat that it is connected and charging is that the two voltmeters will show 14V instead of just over 12V.
  5. Hi Fred It's good to put faces to names and good to meet you. We didn't move away from Silver Cloud to give us more space, the electric cable is rather short on Swan Roamer so had to move to reach the post.
  6. Almost a repeat of last year but Tuesday to Tuesday this time. There is a link to the video at the end. Saw plenty of wildlife, goslings, duckings, Grebes, a few Marsh Harriers, Herons and Kingfishers. This was our fourth time with Swan Roamer. Weather was rather mixed ranging from plenty of rain for the first few days and then sunshine with some showers from Friday onwards. Tuesday 11th June As usual we left home far too early and once we cleared the Milton junction on the A14 it was pretty much 70mph all the way. As usual we stopped in Hoveton (Wroxham) for the toilets (parked in Roy’s car park) and then proceeded to Womack for sandwiches and coffee after which we made our way to Richardsons at about 12:15. Womack Staithe was very quiet with only about four boats moored. It had been raining, mainly heavy drizzle, much of the way but by the time we arrived at Womack it had stopped so it was dry while we loaded the boat thank goodness. Once checked in the instructor very briefly (since this was our fourth time with Roamer) showed us round the boat, we did ask for an extra rope and blanket (didn’t need the second one). Once signed off (no trial run) and the boat loaded we left the yard at about 13:45. We decided to head for Gay’s Staithe for the night but when we got there found three boats on the side-on moorings and two cruisers plus a yacht moored side-on on the stern-on moorings so we continued up Lime Kiln Dyke to Neatishead where we found space which we reversed into second in from the end, it was only just big enough for Roamer. No assistance was given by the occupants of the boat now behind us although they were watching us intently as we got into the very tight space, however assistance was not needed and no other boats were touched. The heavy drizzle that had started just after we got to Neatishead continued through the rest of the afternoon and evening. Wednesday 12th June Having left Neatishead we looked in on Gay’s Staithe again and saw that boats were still side-on instead of stern-on although one of them was a different one, problem is that if one does it others will follow despite the signage. Passing How Hill we noted that the moorings were absolutely full with a lot of yachts that appeared to be a large party of Sea Scouts or similar. We were headed to Womack for the night with the intention of eating in the Kings Arms, the weather did not improve all morning and some time after we got to Womack the rain well and truly set in and continued throughout the afternoon and evening. The staithe was completely full when we got there so we hung around just off the moorings and eventually a boat left so we got moored up. At one point in the afternoon Fair President which was moored alongside us turned their heating on and filled our saloon with the exhaust which is mount very high on that boat, fortunately they left shortly afterwards. Why have Faircraft mounted the heater exhaust so high? Due to the rather inclement weather we did not go to the Kings Arms but ate on board instead. Thursday 13th June Unsure where to go today due to the weather but after a cruise up the Bure and down to South Walsham we decided to head back to Neatishead. There were a lot of yachts on Barton Broad, presumably the group we had seen at How Hill the previous day. Quite a decent morning with regard to the weather and on arrival found plenty of spaces so moored just behind Silver Cloud near the water and electric point. The guy on Silver Cloud recognised my wife from our previous videos and took our ropes, once moored we had a very pleasant chat with him. At one point a boat came into the staithe very fast and hit us side on nearly knocking me off my feet but no damage was done. We walked up to the village with the intention of getting some bread but the shop had virtually none left and nothing to our liking, we still had some so were not too desperate. A little later on I decided to connect our electric cable to give the batteries a good charge since there was credit on one of the meters but I did have to move the boat a little closer due to the length (or lack of it) of our cable. Late in the afternoon Silver Cloud left and there were several comings and goings until the staithe was well and truly full. Friday 14th June On the way back down the Ant we stopped off at Ludham Bridge and actually got bread from the shop all be it at a rather inflated price, however I can’t blame them since they have to make a profit in the summer with no winter trade. We did notice that there were quite a lot of Canada Geese at St Benet’s, a bit unusual at this time of year. Back To Womack since the weather was brightening up and it’s a good place to be when the sun is out and found plenty of space this time. Never did see the Grebes with chicks that were nesting when we were there in April/May. Had quite a long chat with the very nice people on Bon Bon (identical to Roamer but built to a private specification) which moored immediately after us and next to us, they had followed us up the Thurne and Womack Dyke but very considerately had held back and not tried to overtake us as has happened in the past with people rushing to make sure of a mooring. Saturday 15th June Cruised up to Potter Heigham just for a look see knowing that there was absolutely no chance of getting under the bridge then back up to How Hill since it was now nice and sunny, plenty of room today. We really wanted to go round the Nature Trail but thought it would be too muddy without wellingtons, this was confirmed by the BA guy in the little office so it was off to the Secret Garden where there were quite a few Damselflies and Dragonflies. Later in the afternoon there were some showers but it turned out to be a lovely sunny evening. Hathor (which was out when we arrived) returned late afternoon. Sunday 16th june This morning was pump out day even though the indicator light said it was still ok so it was a trip up to Richardsons for this and to fill up with water. We got up to Stalham at about 08:30 and found no water on but one of Richardsons engineers gave us a tip that the blue water outlet is turned off until the office opens but the other outlet is always on so we used that. The blue outlet comes from a tank and is pumped but the other outlet is mains water and pressure. Once the pump out was completed we proceeded back down the Ant (Kingfisher videoed on Stalham Dyke) and saw that there was a mooring available at Irstead, somewhat unsure whether to moor there so early so cruised down to How Hill and finally made a decision, turned round and back to Irstead to find the space on the outer section was still there. Later on I went to plug in our electric cable but it was too short, why did the BA put it towards one end of the mooring instead of in the middle? I thought about turning the boat round but decided against it due to the high volume of boats passing and it is impossible to see the river upstream. A small yacht came in towing an even smaller dingy, the parents/grandparents were taking two children out in the dingy in turns for a bit of sailing experience and were having to tack when going down stream, at one point a cruiser decided to pass them across their bow on a tack, the dingy ran straight into their side and came very close to capsizing, this cruiser then proceeded to nearly run into the stern of Roamer despite me and the people on the yacht shouting at them to stop but they didn’t even apologise and promptly nearly hit the quay heading of the house immediately upstream. The video doesn’t show this particular incident but does show other boats not giving the dingy much consideration. Monday 17th June Having left Irstead we called into Paddy’s Lane to see if there were any photo opportunities but the only thing of any interest was a squirrel on the boardwalk. Then went to Wayford Bridge for a look see but nothing of interest so it was back to Sutton Staithe for the afternoon. After a few hours in the sun we left and went round the corner back to the yard to moor on Heron Quay. Later in the evening I decided to fill up with water since we hadn’t done so that day but the water point we were moored adjacent to didn’t have the mains pressure tap so it was a quick move to the next one along. Tuesday 18th June Woke up early to a lovely morning, once packed and everything back in the car the boat was refuelled and we went to the office to checkout. We got nearly £120 back from our £150 Fuel Deposit so just over £30 worth of diesel used (£1.15/l), ok, we had only done about 4 hours gentle cruising each day at mostly less than about 1400 revs but the heating had been on for the first few evenings. Just shows, with no speeding and taking it easy how little diesel is used. The drive home was uneventful. This is the link to the video:
  7. BryanW


    Does anybody have any ideas what is happening at Summercraft? Back in the winter I noticed that Grecian Girl was for sale on one of the broker's sites and a few weeks ago saw her moored in the private moorings (old boatyard) at Womack Water then a few days ago there was a post on Facebook by somebody who was just moving his new boat from Wroxham to Horning and from the pictures it looked like Grenada Girl.
  8. Thanks Maureen. The wind was nowhere near as bad as that September, we did see Mallard at Sutton Staithe though just like then.
  9. Just found a recent link for 'Mr ASBO': https://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/news/cambridge-news/story-mr-asbo-terror-river-16263419 Maybe they sent him to The Broads.
  10. Last Monday when we got back to Richardsons I got talking to an engineer and asked about their new sedan and was told that they are still deciding how many moulds they should use for the superstructure because of the complex shapes. The engineer did say that they are concentrating on a boat for a customer in Ireland and building new day boats. No chance of their new sedan until next year.
  11. 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.
  12. 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.
  13. Hi Chris Thought I ought to mention that on Swan Rapture you should have the bed made up on arrival and have towels provided but on the 10 berth boat you probably will not have towels provided or the beds made up as I'm guessing that it is from their Classic range. If you want to check just email Richardson and they will confirm.
  14. I think Neatishead may be a bit more than a 20 minute walk, especially coming back.
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