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DAVIDH

A Sort Of Anniversary

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Not a wedding anniversary or anything like that, but 46 years ago today, Doreen and I hired our first boat on the Broads, Sanderling No4 from Sandersons in Reedham. I remember it cost £29 plus the extras. We had never been to Norfolk before, let alone hired a boat so this was something completely new to us. Infact this was 18 months after we met and Doreen still lived in London at the time. To be honest, I just regarded it as a love-nest which was far from the madding crowd, well parents and nosey brothers anyway. We both loved it, probably for the uninterrupted time we had together, not to mention the new adventure we were on. It was so memorable I can still remember the "itinerary", which I have detailed below. Later that year Doreen asked if I would like her to buy me a new swish radio/record player for Christmas, but I declined and asked instead for a second week on the Broads, in November aboard Santa Lucia from Harvey Eastwood in Brundall. much better present! That was the start of the "addiction". It's funny how things get into your blood. The Broads has played a big part in my life, not just holidaying but working as well. Yet some people go once then never go again, or perhaps leave it for another 10 to 20 years. 

Saturday 3rd March. Reedham to Yarmouth Yacht Station
We arrived at Reedham Station around 2pm thinking there would be a queue of taxis to take us to Sandersons. No such thing. It really did feel as though we have got off a train in the middle of nowhere. Thankfully someone gave us a lift down to the riverside. The 20ft Sanderling looked huge as we pulled up. I had read about the tides at Yarmouth and to be careful and as luck would have it, low water was at 4.15pm (about) so we arrived without mishap. I always think it's because we did Breydon etc on that first trip, that the fear you hear other people have of crossing over, never bothers me now.  I can remember we went into the White Swan on the quayside for our night and there was a darts match on so it was packed out. It was a good night and we partook of the sandwiches and pork pies which were offered free of charge!

Sunday Yarmouth to Wroxham
We moored outside the Kings Head so we must have gone under Wroxham Bridge, though I don't remember that. 

Monday  Wroxham to Neatishead. 
I can remember cruising down Lime Kiln Dyke standing with my head out of the canvas hatch above the wheelhouse, holding an umbrella above me. There were passing boats, even in March and quite a few laughed at that sight. 

Tuesday Neatishead to Acle (ended up at Upton Dyke)
I have told the story before of how we ran out of daylight, mis-turned up the Thurne when heading for Acle, before turning around at Thurne Dyke and coming to a halt at Upton in the driving wind and rain - no mooring posts so rhond anchors. What a miserable night that was!

Wednesday Upton to Oulton Broad Yacht Station
There were no dramas crossing Breydon. I do remember arriving at Oulton Broad Y.S and seeing that two houseboats had been moored against the quayside. I asked one of the attendants where we could moor and he said at the floating jetty. We did so and I can recall accidentally dropping my earlier mentioned umbrella into the water and it disappearing into the depths when we were returning from a night at The Lady of the Lake, I think it was. Despite fishing for it with the boat hook and the fact that it was still erect when it went in, I could not retrieve it. It could still be there if anyone is short of a brolly! 

Thursday Oulton Broad to Brundall
We moored outside the Riverside Stores which used to be at the head of the dyke leading to Brooms basin. I remember plenty of other hire boats there at the time. We spent the evening in the Yare Inn, which looked nothing like it does now. It was still big with two bars. We occupied the tap room/public bar or whatever it's called as that was where the jukebox was. I remember we had chicken in a basket with chips - one of the few meals we could afford to eat out. 

Friday Brundall to Loddon to Reedham
We just went down the Chet to see what Loddon was like, spending a few hours there before returning to Reedham where we moored at Sanderson's yard. Cannot remember much about this day.

Saturday Reedham - Home. 
Just to say that traveling by train, as many other people did at that time, involved changing trains at Norwich and Peterborough to get home to Leeds.
 

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2011-07-08_50.JPG

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Great tale David. I remember the Riverside Stores at Brundall very well. It was there until the 1990s I think. Where was your top photo taken? 

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The stores went about nine years ago.Great post.I have been boating since the sixties.Owning boats for almost ten years,and yes it gets into your soul.

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15 minutes ago, Broads01 said:

Where was your top photo taken? 

Not at all sure. Could it be Loddon before the opposite side of the basin was extended?

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What a great story, we hired Lady Ursula from Sanderson's in 1978, they said next time we came we could hire the more up-to-date Sanderling's, being of a similar size to their Lady class, of course, there Is a larger one called the sandpiper of which I know of one in excellent condition and still residing on the Norfolk Broads.

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Great story David. Is that you in the second picture as it bears an uncanny resemblence to Steve Sanderson the younger of the Sanderson brothers who both worked on the yard at that time and is a friend of ours? Incidentally there is one of the Sanderling class on the bank at the boatyard at the end of the Chet on the right which I believe is owned by Bill Maxted , part of the hire fleet which used to run from there

Boycee

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Yes Boycee, that is ME! I look like an old seadog there and I cringe when I look at it but it does show how you could stick your head out of the hatch to steer - now just imagine an umbrella over me. 

Yes, I have seen the Sanderlings, I think there are two at Loddon - one was renovated and painted creme - but now looks like it needs renovating again. The other is in a sorry state, with planking missing and just left (it would seem) to rot away.

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46 minutes ago, DAVIDH said:

Yes Boycee, that is ME!

You really haven’t changed very much David (if you put the cap on).

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4 minutes ago, vanessan said:

You really haven’t changed very much David (if you put the cap on).

Thanks for nothin!

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Yes, I have seen the Sanderlings, I think there are two at Loddon - one was renovated and painted creme - but now looks like it needs renovating again. The other is in a sorry state, with planking missing and just left (it would seem) to rot away.

Go on David - Save one of them - You know you want to!

Griff

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I'll show Sandy the picture next time I  see him  even though it was 46 years ago

Alan

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2 hours ago, BroadAmbition said:

Go on David - Save one of them - You know you want to!

The embarrassing thing is I remember writing  to Sandersons sometime in the late 70s asking if they would be prepared to sell one of them for £1,500. Doreen and I flirted with the idea of moving to the Broads and finding work. We would have needed somewhere to live so my bright idea was a Sanderling while we got more settled accommodation. I cannot recall where I thought we were to get the money from, or for that matter where we going to moor it. Those details did not matter in a pipe dream. Sandersons wrote back politely declining my offer (probably vastly underpriced) and referred me to the boat sale agencies. Bubble pricked and back to reality!

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