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July 2017: Quiet time in the yards at present. Usual time for yard maintenance & make & mend to keep staff busy. Restoration of Wanderer Coachroof cosmetically deteriorated. Few more coats of varnish before completed.
The result of a badly leaking cover & without any framework keeping it off the structure. Plastic covers are inclined to prevent damp areas ever drying out properly.

May 2017: Interesting survey on Fandango, A Laurent Giles design racing vessel of the late 1940's. The vessel is in the IBTC in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard for restoration but for complex reasonsfandango, the restoration is not going ahead at the yard & now the vessel or what is left of her, has a very uncertain future. She is very similar to Myth of Malham but not quite as well known. Unusual build being double diagonal Honduras Cedar with a lead keel. If anyone would like to know more or get involved in a restoration contact me & I can put you in contact with the owner. She is 43 ft long & a lot of boat, and a lot of work.

January/Feb. 2017: Relatively quiet time of year in the yards. Few owners have the enthusiasm for cold days in windblown open boatyards. In the South there has been no exceptional weather, good or bad thus far. Boat sales appear to be slack with few new owners or potential buyers around. Some owners are getting information for insurance survey costs and I would advise those to not leave it until the last minute to find a surveyor as most get fishing-vessela busy period from the start of March.. Sometimes it is possible to reduce the amount you need to spend on a survey. See the article above this column for more information.

A few new Fishing vessels being surveyed for the MCA. Depending on the length, these sometimes have to have as many as 4 surveys whilst in build to ensure they comply with the Seafish & MCA build regulations. These are extremely complex.....and expensive.....

December 2016:

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We wish all a very Merry Xmas, Click image to see video

November 2016: Yards are now filling up for the Winter & lay up fever can be seen over the weekends. Fortunately there have been no major gales in the last few weeks & winds have been Easterly with little rain & no frost. The first frosts have just started along the south coast. Some yards have a few boats that never went in the water last season & in some cases for several seasons before. Perhaps the hope that next year will be different is the hope for those owners, although when next year comes it is no different. Sad to see beautiful vessels languishing ashore.

June/July/August 2016: Boat prices seem to have been falling over recent months & it is quite surprising how much boat you can get now on the secondhand market with respect to the everyday high volume slightly aging classes such as the Westerly Konsorts & Centaurs. These represent good value now as a Centaur can be purchased centaurfor as low as £4000 , once upon a time a good one would have made £12000 & a Konsort for £13000 or less when these were once in demand for nearly £30000. The rarer and more expensive classes such as Fishers & Victoria class still command a high price although perhaps not selling for these asking prices as the owners are reluctant to "give " their boats away. Timber yachts are also dropping at the moment although, a good vessel will always sell. Just difficult finding a good timber yacht nowadays.

April/May 2016: Bealiieu Boat Jumble seemed to be well attended despite the forecast of really cold winds & rain. beaulieuThe rain stayed away and it did warm up as the day progressed. Always worthwhile going although for many people it is a shade too late for the coming season. A few weeks earlier, as it used to be, could be helpful.

 

Yards have been busy launching beaulieu-boat-lumbleand the new Travellift at Ridge Wharf is getting a lot of use having lifted one of the heaviest vessels it possibly has ever lifted.

January/Feb. 2016: In the south there has been very little sign of pleasant weather so far, just wet and very windy with some major gales. No snow and only a few sharp frosts. A lot of covers ripped in the strong winds and a mix of directions. E/NE/SW/NW gales. No known issues ofcatamaranmajor boat damage caused by winds in the Dorset area. The weather has slowed some outside shipwright work down though. A lot of catching up to do. A few new Fishing Vessel constructional surveys for the MCA & Seafish in a Wareham boatbuilders

December 2015: Have a Happy Xmas. Click to play video

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November 2015: A string of severe gales started and continues in the south. Warm temperatures & virtually no frosts....yet. Considerable number of covers ripped to shreds in exposed yards but no reports of yacht damage other than those alongside pontoons where fenders squashed and paintwork damaged along with topside damage due to direct contact with pontoon & pile supports.

October 2015: At the start of October the Solent Boat Jumble had better weather than predicted but the sellers found things a bit slow and were packing up and leaving quite early.

The weather in the South has been warmer than it has for many years and many owners stayed afloat for the extra couple of weeks to take advantage of the opportunity.

A few boats are selling but only if the price is right, which really means low, a lot remain unsold and unused in yards and marinas. A boat that is in or virtually in commission and being used will always be more attractive than the one that has been unused and unloved for months or in some cases, years. If selling, make sure she looks almost ready to go but remove all unnecessary personal gear so buyers can imagine what she would look like with their own personal belongings aboard. Empty lockers are more attractive to the buyer that lockers full of gear.

September 2015: Ridge Wharf boatyard in Wareham received delivery of a new Travellift and assembling on new_liftsite. I believe the old lift is available if you need or want one ..Contact Ridge Wharf for more info. The old one is on the right of the photo.

July 2015:Americas Cup practice: If you were in the Solent early July you might have been racing this one. A americas_cuppair of these passed us whilst match racing off Newtown IOW. Passed us about 50m alongside. Very impressive sight when rising out of the water...Not so fast at displacement speed though.

June/July 2015: The Round The Island Race had good conditions for the majority of boats although it was a bit bumpy for the Family sailers at times. Cowes & the Folly folly_mooringsmoorings were jam packed with parties ongoing until 0200 the following Sunday morning...great for some... By 1200 on Sunday virtually everyone had left & you would not think there had been anything going on.

Generally the Solent has been quiet with regard to full harbours. Yarmouth quite empty on the Green pontoons (non walk ashore) although the walk ashore moorings were in demand. Seems that few feel the need to pump the dinghy up nowadays. No major examples of bad boat handling leading to damage.....yet....

June 2015: Cranchii powerboat appears to have been set alight on the Frome just down from Ridge Wharf on Sunday eve. 7 June. Boat completely destroyed and first reports suggest arson as against accident. Reportedly some unknown youths were seen aboard immediately prior to the fire. Investigation ongoing.

Early June, Serious gales with 60+ MPH gales in Poole Harbour again. No major recorded losses although some sails damaged on roller furling gear.

April/May 2015: May started off with severe gales along the south coast and there have been limited times when it would have been "pleasant" just to drop the mooring for a few hours. As usual a few furling genoas completely wrecked on some of the Poole moorings when they have come loose. At it worst, this can break the forestay and fetch the mast down, so make sure it is well tied up & put another lashing around the forestay wrapping the sail in it.

The Beaulieu boat jumble was held at the end of April. Many visitors think it would be better a few weeks earlier as then there is still time to fit what we didn't know we wanted. The day was cold and rain threatened. It seemed that visitor numbers and stall holders were somewhat lower than previous years.

Undina, the star of Griff Rys Jones TV series "Three Men In undinaA Boat" is ashore in Poole undergoing major restoration works due to in part, electrolytic damage. A truly beautiful vessel built early 1950's Abeking & Rasmussen & 45ft long

March 28 2015: Dorset Boat Jumble went ahead on Saturday 28 March. Bit of a wash out unfortunately. dorset_jumbleStrong winds plus gradually increasing rain meant that many stallholders were packing up to leave by 1200 unable to keep the stalls dry & from blowing over.

The weekend in general turned out exceptionally wet & windy with bad weather continuing into the run up to Easter.

March 2015: The fitting out season is slow getting underway as the weekends are still cold and unsettled and few have found the stamina and desire to endure the cold while polishing their hull.

Recently in Plymouth surveying large Hillyard. One of the hillyard_28 tonfew very large vessel built by Hillyards at over 51 feet & 28 Tons, a very substantial yacht.

January 2015: The year has started off on a bit of a cold note, although not as cold as a few years ago. No snow to speak of ...yet.. Severe gales caused a lot of superficial damage with ripped covers in the local yards in Poole & Wareham, but not heard of any boat related structural damage. Sustained cold temperatures may well have caused the unsuspected split fresh water pipework though. Don't forget to winterise anything that can contain water!

Recent survey on a 35ft 1924 Gentlemans Cruiser and at the opposite end of the spectrum, a newish Aquador 28ft sports cruiser.