17th November 2016 – Coastal Community Funding
Queenborough Harbour are through to round 2 for coastal community funding, click the link below for a short overview. If you wish to find out more or offer your support please get in touch.
10th October 2016 – Swale Business Awards 2016
Queenborough Harbour didn’t win an award this year, maybe next! But we were very pleased to be in the top 25% of applicants and our congratulations go to the winning entrants.
19th Aug 2016 – Swale Business Awards 2016
Queenborough Harbour are very pleased to have been selected as a finalist in the Swale Business Awards 2016. We have a few more hurdles to jump, so please wish us luck.
2016 Harbour Guide
Our latest harbour guide is available here as a PDF for download. Full of useful information about the harbour and surrounding area along with details of some local services available, from fishing tackle to marine batteries.
7th Jan 16 – Lifejackets & Kill Cords are life savers at sea, click on the link below for a quick safety refresher
Happy New Year 2016
1st Jan 16 – Queenborough Harbour Trust would like to give a heart-felt thanks to all our mooring holders, visitors, friends, sponsors, volunteers, Adopt A Plankers, employees and everyone else who have enabled us to renovate the All Tide Landing, install the new 60 metre pontoon, put in new shoal moorings as well as double the numbers of permanent mooring holders and visitors using Queenborough during 2015. A HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU ALL and may 2016 be even better for you. Please share our thanks as widely as you can.
Full-Time Deck Hand Vacancy
18th Dec 15 – A vacancy has arisen for a full-time deck hand to join the harbour team. This is a busy role requiring skills both on and of the water. Full details are shown on the link below.
Closing date for applications is Monday 1st Feb 2016.
Adopt A Plank for Christmas
Tug Touchstone & FREE access to London Boat Show
10th Dec 15 – Rob Chandler and his team of volunteers will be taking veteran tug Touchstone to the London Boat Show in January. Volunteers will be on board to show visitors around and make sure their visit is a safe one. Rob is looking for additional volunteers throughout the show and is offering a FREE boat show ticket in return for 3-4 hours volunteer work aboard the tug. Rob and his team are a friendly group and would welcome your help. If you are interested please contact the harbour trust by email, email@example.com
New Chartlet – 8th Dec 15
Trot Boat running EVERY weekend 29th Oct 2015
Up until now the trot boat has stopped operating at the end of October and started again the following April. This year for the first time we are pleased to announce that through the winter (November to March) the trot boat will be available for mooring holders and visitors every Saturday & Sunday between 10am and 4pm. This is of course subject to fair weather. Happy Boating.
Limited Moorings at Queenborough 7th Oct 2015
If you are looking for a mooring, please contact us as soon as possible. Already this year we have sold 31 moorings and we only have a few vacant moorings left.
James Wharram celebrates Atlantic crossing 21 Sep 15
At Queenborough Harbour Trust we are very fortunate to have two sailing legends as our patrons. Next week our patron, James Wharram, will be celebrating the 60th Anniversary of the first offshore catamaran to set sail from Falmouth. Click Here to read all about it, in an article written by “The Falmouth Packet”.
Turnstile Access to the ATL & Pontoon 21 Sep 15
Last week, after many years of good service the swipe card mechanism gave up. We are hoping to repair it, but the odds are 50:50. On Saturday we fitted an electronic keypad, this has been programmed with 2 codes, one for mooring holders and one for visitors. The visitor code will be changed every few days. Tokens may still be used.
Halloween at “The Old House” 14 Sep 15
The Old House at Home, public house in Queenborough High St, are holding a Halloween party Friday 30th October 2015, food, drink and fancy dress. FREE entry. Contact us if you plan to arrive by boat..
Dinghy Rack 14 Sep 15
Annual mooring holders may now rent a space in the dinghy rack on the ATL, 10 spaces available and 5 already taken, so hurry to benefit from this great facility.
August Bank Holiday – Restricted Access
We have 12 Clipper yachts, each 70ft long and a 70ft committee boat arriving Sunday evening for an overnight stay ahead of the start on Monday for the 2015 Round the World Clipper race. Our Patron Sir Robin Knox-Johnston will also be arriving Sunday evening. As a result, overnight berthing in the harbour on Sunday evening will be severely limited to just the two yellow buoys, each taking 4 boats and any available single buoys. As usual, overnights stays will be on a first come, first served basis.
The Clipper yachts will be departing Queenborough from 09:00 Monday morning to rendezvous at Southend pier,. The race will start at 12:30.
Invitation to view the plaques on the All Tide Landing
A big “thank you” to all of you who have supported the harbour development by sponsoring a plank. We invite you to view yours and other plaques this Sunday 9th August from 1pm to 4pm as our guests. If your plaque is in remembrance of a loved one, please feel free to lay flowers. We suggest you tie flowers to the nearest post to prevent them being blown away.
Auction – Closing Date for Bids Tuesday 21st July
22ft Kestrel sailing yacht with FREE mooring until the end of the year. Click the link below for full details. The yacht is currently laying alongside the town quay at Queenborough, beside our South St office. Please call to arrange a viewing.
Refurbishment of the walkway is complete 11th June
The walkway is now complete and the crane barge will be taken away Friday 12th June. Access to shore via our pontoon and newly refurbished walkway will be easier than it has ever been, from Friday evening onwards. The harbour office now faces out towards the channel and there is more pontoon space on the channel side for visiting boats. Further improvements will continue to take place and will be posted here and on our Facebook site.
Access to the ATL has been restored 5th June
It has been quite a challenge over the past 2 months to keep the walkway open during its refurbishment, but apart from 3 days this week when we had to remove the bridge in order to access the walkway beneath it and to carry out some bridge repairs, we have managed just that.
Even with the bridge out this week, access was still possible at low water for those that didn’t mind getting muddy feet and traversing the obstacle course on the partly completed walkway.
Next week the work is due to be complete and the crane barge will be towed back to its home in Tilbury.
Meanwhile this weekend the forecast is great and we expect it to be a very busy weekend in the harbour, with many visitor enquiries already received and mooring holders planning to get out on the water and enjoy this fine weather.
Welcome to Queenborough.
Saturday 30th May at 05:00
Natasha Lambert using Sup & Puff technology prepares to embark upon her penultimate leg of her journey by sail from Cowes to St Katherines dock London.
Tim Bell, a volunteer at the harbour, helped the crew by charging batteries, loaning fuel cans and coordinating access.
See here for more information on this inspiring journey by an enthusiastic young lady https://t.co/yoKqBB9vb1
ATL Closed – Tuesday 2nd June 06:00 to Thursday 4th June 18:00
The refurbishment of the ATL walkway is almost complete. To finish the last section, the contractors “WPH marine”, need to remove the bridge between Crundells wharf and the walkway. Therefore access to the ATL and new pontoon will not be possible during this period. We apologise for the inconvenience this may cause, but we are sure you will appreciate the positive benefits that will come from the completion of this major improvement.
Access to shore will of course be possible by dinghy to the slipway/hard.
Part-Time Trot Boat Staff Required 14/5/15
We have filled our vacancy for a permanent deck hand, but are still on the look-out for additional part-time deck hands to run the trot boat and carry out day to day harbour duties. If you are interested in this unique role and have the necessary skills please get in touch.
Sealed Bid Auction – 22 Lots (Now Closed)
Queenborough Harbour Trust are holding a sealed bid auction. All proceeds will go to the continued development of the harbour. Queenborough Harbour Trust CIC is a not-for-profit company, please bid generously.
Sailing yacht -Rigid tenders -Inflatable tender
4HP Outboard -Office Equipment -Desk
Viewing Dates – Tuesday 5th May & Saturday 9th May at our Town Quay Office
Closing date for bids Tuesday 12th May
Trot Boat Staff Required 16/4/15
Queenborough Harbour are currently recruiting staff to run the trot boat and carry out day to day harbour duties. Click the links below for full details and instructions on how to apply. Closing date for entries – 25th April.
All Tide Landing Walkway 10/4/15
If you have been to Queenborough recently you will have seen the excellent progress being made on the refurbishment of the walkway. WPH are doing a great job of ripping up the old walkway and fitting the new Balau timber joists and decking. So far disruption has been minimal and we have remained open to visitors and our mooring holders. If you would like to support the harbour, please visit our Adopt a Plank page.
Recruiting NOW ! Volunteer Director/Trustee 23/3/15
Due to the expansion of our team, Queenborough Harbour Trust CIC is seeking to recruit a suitable Director/Trustee to assist in the management and development of Queenborough’s maritime facilities.
Arrival of the Crane Barge – at the start of a 6 week project to refurbish the walkway leading to the All Tide Landing 10 Mar 2015
Free Access Gate Tokens 09 Mar 2015
New for 2015 we are providing overnight visitors with a free token for each crew member.
The token allows a crew member to gain access to the walkway leading to the new pontoon, All Tide Landing (ATL) and trot boat.
Additional tokens may still be obtained from our staff or from local shops, pubs and restaurants for £1 each.
Restricted Access to Pontoon & ATL 08 Mar 2015
Work will begin 9th March on refurbishment of the ATL walkway. Throughout the duration of the work, a large crane barge will be moored alongside the pontoon for loading and unloading materials and as a floating workshop. Please phone harbour staff before visiting Queenborough for advice on mooring. Thank you in advance for your patience during these essential works.
CCTV 25 Feb 2015
We are currently testing our CCTV system, recently installed by Tim Bell, a friend of Queenborough Harbour Trust. The system incorporates a number of cameras that enable us to see clearly day and night. When complete we will be able to monitor our facilities remotely and record up to 30 days of data. We expect this added security will be of benefit to our mooring holders and visitors. Once the trials and installation are complete, we plan to add “Live Viewing” to this website. The system has already proved itself by identifying an unknown person moving equipment about on the pontoon, it turned out to be one of our staff wearing a new jacket!
ATL Walkway Refurbishment 21 Feb 2015
After more than 20 years of continual use, the walkway leading from Crundells wharf to the All Tide Landing (ATL) is being refurbished. Work on the timber decking and sub-structure will commence mid-March, with completion due by end of April this year. We will endeavour to keep the walkway open during the refurbishment, but inevitably there will be occasions when access is not possible. We do expect the walkway to remain open at weekends.
Medway & Swale Boating Conference
Queenborough Harbour are exhibiting at the MSBA conference being held 7th March at The St Georges Centre, Chatham. This is an all day event with some great speakers and many exhibitors. Tickets are available from www.msba.org.uk and include all refreshments. We will be there to tell visitors all about the harbour and our plans for the future, we hope to see you there.
Expansion at Queenborough Harbour
With the recent addition of a further 9 moorings, Queenborough Harbour continues to expand its services to the boating community. These Shoal Draft/Half Tide moorings are suitable for boats up to 10m long that are able to settle in the soft mud. Mooring holders will benefit from all the amenities available at Queenborough, including a free trot boat service, while the low pricing reflects the restriction on access. Please contact the Harbour for further information.
If you like the idea of a half tide mooring, but your boat is longer than 10m, please let us know and we will arrange to install half tide moorings to suit longer boats.
New Pontoon and ATL – RESTRICTED ACCESS
Now that we have the new pontoon in place we need to carry out a number of important safety actions before we can officially welcome boats alongside. These jobs will take 4-8 weeks to complete, though it obviously depends on the weather. Jobs include:
- Paint markings showing the edge of the pontoon
- Removal of a number of trip hazards
- Installation of firefighting and lifesaving equipment
- Pressure washing slippery surfaces & application of non-slip coatings
During this time access is restricted to Queenborough Harbour staff & Contractors ONLY.
If you plan to visit Queenborough you may continue to use the visitors buoys and concrete lighter, but we would rather you did not use the ATL and walkway when going ashore without a member of staff present to ensure your safety, but if you do it is at your own risk. Please contact us in advance and we will try our best to accommodate you. Our staff are present a few hours each day during winter and have essential maintenance work to complete, so if we miss your call please leave a message.
Harbour office 01795 662051 or Staff mobile 07456 459754
The new pontoon was officially opened on the 26th November – with Champagne toasts, and speeches from the Chairman of QHT and Peel Ports. Visitors were given a guided tour, and the new facilities were displayed to their best – on a cold and damp November day. “There is still much to do to get the moorings ready but we are already looking forward to welcoming new visitors as the new sailing season starts” said Geof Reed. BOOK HERE
We are pleased that the new pontoon moorings with immediate shore access will be available shortly. Substantial and secure they will provide ideal moorings in one of the best positions on the South East coast. Please be aware the number of moorings is strictly limited. The cost is £220 per metre. To book a mooring please contact the harbour office on 01795 662051 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit us at the Southampton Boat show on the British Marine Federation Stand
We can help you find a mooring at a sensible price – and you take advantage of our special deals!
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston visits Queenborough Harbour
Sir Robin visited Queenborough Harbour 9th June on the way back from the Royal River Pageant with Suhaili to his home port of Gosport. He had extensively refurbished this original wooden craft in which he won the Sunday Times Round the World Single handed yacht race back in 1965.
Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, round the world yachtsman agrees to be our patron
After studying our business plan and ambitions for Queenborough Harbour Sir Robin has agreed to be our Patron.
He believes that the River Thames and Medway have had little or no investment from the authorities for leisure sailors and that improvements to harbours and berthing arrangements must be encouraged.
He used to sail “Suhaili,” the yacht he first circumnavigated the world non-stop, from St Katherine’s in the 80s to spend the odd night at Queenborough. He has fond memories of such visits.
Queenborough Harbour – A wider community’s unique amenity and historic and financial asset
Why is it so important?
Swale Borough Council’s decision to offer the management of Queenborough Harbour, in perpetuity, to a third party is a ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity for a ‘not for profit’ organisation to develop this valuable local asset into a viable enterprise that benefits the local and Swale communities. There are successful ‘not for profit’ organisations developing local assets for the benefit of their communities and contributing to their local economies. Brightlingsea Harbour is such an example – it is a not for profit organisation that makes a profit and reinvests every penny into its harbour that in turn supports the local economy. Queenborough Harbour should be managed by an organisation that is dedicated to the success of the Harbour as a valuable asset, which is a viable, profitable local amenity serving its marine, recreational, educational, disadvantaged and business communities.
Swale Borough Council’s Intent
Maidstone Borough Council is running a restricted tender, on behalf of Swale Borough Council to award a contract for managing the Queenborough Harbour Mooring Service on the Isle of Sheppey in Swale.
The Council acknowledges that Queenborough Harbour is the primary boating refuge on the Swale, which is a narrow channel of tidal water separating the Isle of Sheppey from the mainland. It is a place of natural beauty, diverse business, communities and environments covering 364 square kilometres and a population of 125,000 people. The Swale Borough is in a strategic location being part of the Thames Gateway and close to mainland Europe.
The harbour at Queenborough has strong historical links with the Continent, especially Holland and is strategically placed at the entrance to the River Medway and for people travelling along the coast. The harbour has a long history of being an important facility for the Royal Navy and was one of their key minesweeper bases during WW2.
The Swale Borough’s maritime influence is a product of its 111km long coastline – the longest of any district in Kent. It includes the soft clay cliffs of Sheppey, its coastal marshes and mud, its inlets and creeks; the latter providing the basis for industries such as fishing, barge building and in modern times, tourism and leisure.
Swale Borough Council recognises that the Queenborough Harbour service provides valuable mooring facilities for local yachtsmen, fishermen and visitors alike. This in turn provides a valuable service for the local economy by supporting tourism and local maritime industries.
In addition, the South East England Development Agency has developed a master plan for land immediately adjacent to Queenborough Harbour, for mixed business and residential development. Included within the development are plans for a new marina complex over the medium term.
Swale Borough Council states that the Harbour Service is therefore an important asset for the local community and the Borough generally.
The Council says it is seeking an operator with an interest in operating and developing the harbour service. Having identified the importance of the service to the local community and economy, The Council believes that the continued operation of the service is best placed with an organisation with the experience and resources to take forward the development of the services already provided.
The Council’s stated Vision is to transform the Borough’s economic, social and environmental prospects so that it is one of the best places in Britain in which to live, work, learn and invest. This is supported by a determination to deliver, directly and in partnership with others, a variety of services to meet and champion the needs of the local community.
Swale community’s response
For some years, the local community has been disappointed with Swale Borough Council’s slow rundown of Queenborough Harbour services to the point that the local community has apologised to the visitors for its poor services. The local community therefore have welcomed the Council’s move to divest themselves of the harbour operations and transfer the management to an organisation that will serve the community by developing the harbour services. In response to this, the local community has set up the Queenborough Harbour Trust to manage Queenborough Harbour.
Queenborough Harbour Trust, a not for profit organisation, has submitted an offer to the Council that meets all their stated objectives. The Trust has shown that their offer provides a viable operation for the harbour, that it is profitable and that these profits are reinvested in the harbour. By reinvesting and developing the Harbour’s services, the Harbour will attract more visitors to the area and the Harbour in particular. The details of the offer to the Council shows that with the harbour managed by the Queenborough Harbour Trust it will benefit the local community by an additional £150,000 year on year.
The Queenborough Harbour Trust is made up of representatives, the Trustees, from Queenborough Society, Queenborough Yacht Club, Queenborough Rowing Club, the All Tide Landing Board, Sheppey Rugby Club and Castle Connections. The Trustees and members supporting the Trust come from the local, Sheppey and Swale communities; they are residents of Queenborough and towns on the Isle of Sheppey and Swale. Queenborough Harbour Trust therefore truly represents the interests of Swale Borough.
Queenborough Harbour Trust’s response
Queenborough Harbour Trust has provided Swale Borough Council with the solution to managing a harbour with a ‘fit for purpose’ strategy of low overheads, customer (user focused) staff and investment drive that will increase its capacity to moor larger vessels and more vessels. The Harbour will be more effectively manned and have improved security.
What makes Queenborough Harbour Trust’s offer to the Council unique is the All Tide Landing, which is owned by the Queenborough Yacht Club. Including the use and operation of the All Tide Landing enables, for the first time, the Harbour to be operated as an integrated facility of the Creek, Swale moorings and the All Tide Landing. The revenue this integrated operation generates from the boating communities is key to the overall viability of the Harbour.
With the development of the Harbour the opportunity to work more effectively with local schools and those who are disadvantaged becomes a reality – reinvestment enables improved facilities. Queenborough Harbour Trust’s business model is based on a worse case with no grants and loans – it shows that the Harbour will be a viable and increasingly profitable operation. However, sinceQueenborough Harbour Trust will be eligible for grants and loans the harbour development can occur more rapidly with a corresponding rapid contribution to the local economy.
The following ‘check list’ highlights Queenborough Harbour Trust’s contribution to Queenborough Harbour’s communities. Also attached is a consolidated narrative of responses to the questions raised by Swale Borough Council’s tender prequalification and tender process.
1 Health and Safety – comply with all relevant legislation and provide clear guidelines to staff and users of the Harbour
2 All operations will be developed to comply with ISO 9001 Quality Management and ISO 14000 Environmental Management – Currently the Council’s harbour operations are not set up to be compliant.
3 Certificates and licences – ensure all appropriate certificates, licences and consents are obtained
4 Operate and manage the overnight moorings
5 Operate and manage the annual/summer/winter moorings
6 The set fees for the mooring service and manage the booking of moorings
7 Take cash for overnight moorings from moored vessels and bank all monies taken – Currently this excludes the use of the All Tide Landing. Integrating the operation of the All Tide Landing in the Harbour’s operations provides increased revenue to reinvest into the Harbour’s services.
8 Undertake and oversee the planned maintenance of all moorings in conjunction with Medway Port Authority.
9 Ensure all the Harbour’s vessels comply with appropriate legislation/codes of practice. – Currently there are two vessels and we have offered to take these over from the Council.
10 Undertake and oversee the planned maintenance of all moorings in conjunction with Medway Port Authority.
11 Undertake towing duties of vessels as and when required.
12 Carry out regular safety inspections/preventative actions in relation to moored vessels.
13 Provide information to Medway Port Authority in relation to maritime bye-laws.
14 Maintain the quayside/minor repairs/cleansing etc.
15 Maintain the “Hard”/minor repairs/cleansing as required.
16 Act as a focal point for requests for information from visitors and advice in relation to the harbour. – Currently it is the Harbour Office is not located close to the moorings and is not able to be a welcoming point for visitors and Harbour users.
17 Respond to out of hours emergency calls relating to vessels in distress or similar emergencies. – This out of the current scope of operations due to the Councils limited manning for the Harbour.
18 Provide an oil recycling point for harbour vessels.
19 Operate the dinghy park. -The dinghy park will be developed to increase its capacity and improve security.
20 Liaise with the fishermen for the operation of the fisherman’s quay. – The Council have established a separate agreement with Queenborough’s fishermen for the operation and maintenance of the fishermen’s quay.
21 Liaise with local partners and agencies such as Medway Ports, Maritime & Coastguard Agency, Port of London, All Tide Landing Board. – Queenborough Harbour Trust is unique in being able to provide an integrated Harbour facility as the All Tide Landing Board is a Trustee.
22 Administer bookings and reconcile payments.
23 Arrange collections of waste.
24 Issuing licenses for pleasure boats. – Swale Borough Council wishes to retain this function.
25 Administer and monitor the booking of the concrete lighter.
26 Water taxi service. A water taxi service will be provided to suite the Harbour seasons – Due to the Council’s restricted manning levels there is no Trot Boat or water taxi service is currently provided for the Harbour.
27 Protection for the wildlife and its habitats in the Harbour. – This is currently not a function of the Council’s harbour operations
28 Improved supervision and CCTV covering the moorings, All Tide Landing and Creek. – Currently the location of the Council’s staff makes it difficult for them to adequately supervise the Harbour’s facilities.
29 Operate and maintain toilet and shower facilities for Harbour users. – The current facilities have not been maintained in a ‘fit for use state’ and therefore not been available for visitors to the harbour. Queenborough Harbour Trust have offered to operate and maintain the toilet and shower facilities. (The facilities can be extended to include clothes washing and drying for visiting boat crews).
30 Manage the cleaning and scrubbing berth.
31 Community enterprises. – Breaking new ground for the Harbour working with the community to develop programmes for water craft, natural history and social history interests.
32 Education enterprises. – For the first time the Harbour working with local schools for the harbour operations to be used as a training workshop for students.
33 Additional moorings. – Develop the Harbour’s Swale mooring asset by including new half and three-quarter tide moorings and develop the existing swinging moorings to experimental ‘T’ berths. Ultimately, extend the All Tide Landing to include pontoon moorings.
34 New Harbour Office. – The existing harbour office is located behind a fence on the end of the quay in the Creek. This is the furthest is it can be positioned from the main revenue earning Swale moorings. A new fit for purpose Harbour Office will be located adjacent to the All Tide Landing with views of the Swale and all the moorings.
35 Burial of ashes at sea.
36 Visitor boat victualling. – The local commerce working with the Harbour to provide a victualling service for visiting boats.
37 Marine fuel. – Install marine fuelling facility at the All Tide Landing.
38 Boat yard maintenance. – Sub let the existing harbour office and yard to a local boat maintenance enterprise (the facility is not required for the Harbour as building and boat maintenance is not a core business for the harbour operator).
39 Wi-Fi for harbour users. – Provide Wi-Fi facility for Harbour users.
40 Webcam. – Provide webcam linked to the Harbour website.
41 Website. – Set up the Queenborough Harbour website.
42 Income to the local economy. – Improving the Harbour’s facilities and services will attract more visitors to Queenborough. Just a 20% increase an the number of visitors will introduce some £150,000 into the local economy – year on year.
43 Local events. – Currently the services offered by the Harbour are inadequate to support sizeable local events. With the improved services the Harbour will be able to help promote a Queenborough Regatta that includes the historical, educational and recreational societies and clubs in and around Queenborough.