News Page


Occasional news updates regarding boats, weather ,insurance & anything interesting. Email me if you have any interesting yachting news

March /April/May 2014

The winter has passed without extremes of weather, very few frosts & no snow in the South.The fit out season slowed down because of the miserable weather but those boats that had plans to be launched were finally back in the water. A considerable number of boats still ashore with no obvious prospect of early launching for this season though. A couple of Boat Jumbles in the South, Beaulieu being the largest .Very muddy but not too much rain during the day although a large number of stalls were missing. I always find Beaulieu a bit late as the boats are all ready in the water & no urgency to buy bits. It used to be a few weeks earlier to allow the fitting of the bits you did not know you needed.

The first weekend aftyer May Day saw extreme gales in Poole and no boats out at all.

Now it is Spring Bank Holiday and the outlook for the start of the weekend is a bit grim. Friday (23 May) is seeing extreme gales again in Poole of Southerly gales 50kn. gusts.


December 2013/January 2014

The first penetrating fogs of the season in Dorset, but not too many frosts yet. Still quite a fog boatyardfew empty spaces in some yards. Wind & rain the main feature so far. Ripped covers in many yards but fortunately no major boat toppling that I am aware of.


Major flooding everywhere in Dorset & vessels floating dangerously high against the riverbank of the Frome in Wareham Poole Harbour.

Major road flooding as well with access into Poole from the West badly affected & access into Wareham impossible on the Causeway road leading from the bridge.












One or two requests to advise on the way forward with some vessels.

Here a Lone Gull class in Poole needing an expensive restoration.










westerly centaur



Westerly Centaur broken away looking more like it was beautifully parked on the beach rather than stranded.







Is your insurance still in force?

Most insurance will have an in commission period, often April- October if on a swinging mooring, but you can be sure if anything occurs after that time, unless you have contacted them for broke_mooring_poolean extension, they can well refuse any claims if you were meant to be ashore or "safe"


Check now....

Usually it will be the cleat that fails & often I will see undersize fastenings or backing plates. Not very often do you come across the deck coming off!


Check your primary mooring fastenings & the backing plate. These can & do fail & losing the boat for the want of a £1.50 bolt will haunt for for many years after the event. Plus, you might find the insurers claim neglect in some cases.

There are so many reasons a survey can be the savior of your boat.

yacht propped up


Boats are being laid up thick & fast now. Most yards are very careful to check the props before, during & after gales, but private clubs and yards might expect the owner to ensure their own boat's safety. If in doubt, get the yard foreman or moorings officer to confirm before doing it yourself.

You might be liable if there is a problem following your own adjustment & lives can be & have been lost by attempting to secure boats ashore when you are talking of many tons of boat standing on a fin keel.

If you are still afloat then check your insurance & more importantly, check your mooring attachment points.

sailo safely
















Frost Damage

Winter temperatures are getting close now & frosts will be heavy. Always leave all seacocks open if the boat is ashore as any water within the pipe can & will split the seacock if it cannot drain away. Antifreeze the engine & run some antifreeze solution through the water intake system before stopping the engine. Drain all freshwater systems including calorifier systems.


Timber long will they survive for?

A few weeks ago a local broker asked me to assess a timber vessel that had been repossessed by the marina owners because of unpaid bills. A substantial Colin Archer style vessel. How old....built in Scandinavia in 1870, it was gertting on when Queen Victoria died! The boat was still afloat but in obvious need of substantial time & money.

colin archer 1870








This weather forecast is generated by the Met Office Weather Widget