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  • 17 Feb 2018 09:52 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    I guess some of us still feel we are in the grip of a cold and damp winter, yet there is a glow in the air with the promise of Spring around the corner.   Crocuses and snowdrops are beginning to fade, the daffodils are in bud and March is only a fortnight away.    We can begin to think about casting off our practical but rather tattered old boiler suit, putting away our angle grinder, touching up the keel with a final coat of epoxy resin and wielding our trusty paint-roller instead.     

    This annual toil of crouching beneath the hull - usually performed alone but occasionally with a little sympathetic help - is what pushes us out of the house and onto the road for a romantic (or not) journey on our way down to the south coast.   Or maybe you've enough dosh to pass all this effort over to the boatyard - depending on how intimate you feel about your boat!

    But there may be some lingering doubts.   Have I booked my slot for the re-launch or am I still waiting to replace the anodes.  Have I checked the propeller or the cutlass bearing?    And what about my seacocks, the gearbox oil, engine service - and the boat’s general all-round polishing?    Did I remember to clean the two-stroke outboard, flush it with fresh water and run it dry to empty the carburettor of fuel?   Have I washed the genoa sheets?   Are my sails back from being valleted?   I’m sure there was something about all this on the discussion forum!  

    But no worries, when the jobs are done and the results are in we can look forward to a new season, heralded by New Member’s Night (March 20th) when Chris will officially launch the Summer Programme.   And then there’s the Fitting-out Supper, two weeks later, by which time we can feel more confident in our plans for the start of the sailing season.    I look forward to hearing all about them.   
    Wow, how time flies!
    Fair winds,
    Leon Barbour

  • 04 Feb 2018 11:40 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The dates for the Summer programme of sailing events are now on the website under Sailing events.

    All the details are provisional at present but will be confirmed by the end of February.

  • 20 Jan 2018 18:30 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    A preliminary MAIB report about the use of tethers, based on a fatal accident whilst sailing in the Indian Ocean on 18 November 2017, can be found by clicking here.

  • 17 Dec 2017 12:23 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Summer Cruise 2017 report has been uploaded into the 'Rally & Cruise Reports' sub-section of the Club website (click here) - read all about what you did or didn't miss!

  • 14 Sep 2017 19:41 | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    The petition launched before the election for action against unmarked lobster pots has been now been resurrected - see the article in Yachting Monthly

    To sign the petition - click here

  • 12 Sep 2017 19:37 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Just a reminder, as the 2017 sailing season draws to a close, that numerous rally reports have been posted on the website, the latest being for Itchenor and Yarmouth.
    To see them click here
  • 26 Aug 2017 06:36 | Anonymous member (Administrator)



    Clearance Depths
    14 August 2017

    Notice is hereby given that ..... Hydrographic surveys to measure clearance over the chains have been undertaken and the following temporary restrictions are in place:

    Maximum Permissible Draught = Actual Tide Height + 1.1 metres

    Mariners are advised that this is a ‘worst case’ (mid-ebb spring tide) when the ferry is berthed on the west bank and is being set to the north. Mariners are advised that increased clearances are available during this mid-ebb period when the ferry is berthed on the east bank. If your vessel is deep drafted and you have the need to transit the chain ferry crossing during this mid-ebb spring period, CHC strongly suggest that you allow the chain ferry to cross and be moored on the east bank before proceeding with caution.

    Greater clearances are possible during other stages of the tidal cycle, particularly at High Water. Please see the indicative survey diagrams below.

    All mariners are reminded that the maximum clearance depths are achieved at the mid-point between the prow of the Chain Ferry and the opposite shore. Vessels should avoid passing close to the prows of the ferry due to the obstruction of the chains as they slope down to the riverbed.

    Any deep draught vessel or any other vessel requiring an unimpeded passage should contact the Chain Ferry, providing as much notice as possible, on VHF Channel 69.

    Further chain adjustments and survey checks will be carried out in the near future, with the aim of increasing depths over the chains throughout all tidal cycles whilst maintaining a normal ferry service. The aim of these scheduled works will be to restore navigation clearance depths over the chains to previous reported depths for the previous ferry. 

    Further surveys will be carried out as works require and all mariners will be advised of any changes to clearance depths via Cowes Harbour Local Notice to Mariners.

    All mariners are advised that Cowes Harbour LNTM 15 of 2016 remains in force and all vessels should navigate with particular caution when approaching the Chain Ferry, especially with a following tide. 

    High Water
    HW West
    Mid-Tide East

    This image shows the ‘worst case’ scenario with the vessel on the West bank and is being set to the North by the spring ebb tide.

    Mid-tide West
    Low Water
    Low Water

    Please see the full survey diagrams:

  • 18 Aug 2017 11:29 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Aircraft Carrier Alliance – link to home page

    HMS Queen Elizabeth Enters Portsmouth


    Britain's future flagship HMS Queen Elizabeth sailed into her home port of Portsmouth for the first time today.

    Greeted by thousands of people lining the Portsmouth seafront, the 65,000-tonne carrier was met with the warmest of welcomes as she arrived in her home port just after 7am.

    Royal Navy sailors lined up in ceremonial procedure on the flight deck of the mammoth ship, standing alongside civilian colleagues from the Aircraft Carrier Alliance, as she passed the Round Tower.

    HMS Queen Elizabeth was also greeted with a flypast of helicopters from the Fleet Air Arm, including Wildcat and Merlin helicopters and Hawk jets. 

    Captain Jerry Kyd, the Commanding Officer of HMS Queen Elizabeth, said: "HMS Queen Elizabeth's first entry into her home port of Portsmouth is an historic, proud and exciting occasion, not only for those of us serving in her, but also for the wider Royal Navy, the city of Portsmouth and the entire nation."

    "The UK's future flagship, as well her sister ship HMS Prince of Wales, will be powerful symbols of Britain's outward facing global character and ambition. The Royal Navy has a very special relationship with Portsmouth dating back half a millennium and both carriers will ensure the Navy's city remains the focal point of our great nation's maritime power for generations to come."

    The ship will berth at the newly-opened Princess Royal Jetty at Her Majesty's Naval Base Portsmouth, which will be home to both of the Royal Navy's new aircraft carriers. The second, HMS Prince of Wales, will be officially named in a ceremony at Rosyth next month. 

    The berth has been upgraded and strengthened to support the carriers as part of a raft of infrastructure upgrades which took place ahead of the arrival of the ship.

    The approach channel to Portsmouth has also been made deeper and wider, from its original 210 metres to 450 metres, and the channel has been straightened as much as possible to avoid large course alterations.

    Bespoke navigational lights, a high-voltage electrical supply and specialist carrier-specific gangways, known as 'brows', have also been provided as part of a £100m programme of works to prepare Portsmouth for the arrival of the carrier.

    Sir Peter Gershon, Chairman of the Aircraft Carrier Alliance, said: "I am incredibly proud to witness HMS Queen Elizabeth arrive at her home port of Portsmouth Naval Base having successfully completed the first phase of her sea trials programme. 

    "Over 10,000 people have come together to bring HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales to life, from early design to the magnificent ships they are today. It is thanks to their industrious endeavours and pride that we have achieved this historic moment in the programme to bring HMS Queen Elizabeth into service. 

    "We're excited to complete the remainder of her test and commissioning programme before delivering her to the Royal Navy by the end of the year."

    With only three other countries in the world building aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth will give Britain the capability to lead the way in tackling global issues in an increasingly uncertain world, from providing humanitarian relief to high-end war fighting.

    And with the state-of-the-art F-35B Lightning fighter jets on track to make their first trial flights from the carrier's deck next year, the UK is now building towards delivering carrier strike capability. Both aircraft carriers are being delivered by the Aircraft Carrier Alliance.

    Leading Airman Liam Forgeron, 28, from Portchester, is an aircraft handler on board HMS Queen Elizabeth. He said: "Being a local lad, I am extremely proud that Portsmouth will now be the base port for the nation's future flagship.

    "The historic port has a long and proud association with the Royal Navy and the arrival of HMS Queen Elizabeth will cement this relationship for a further 50 years. As a Royal Navy aircraft handler, serving on board this mighty vessel is a real honour, as I too get to make history in my home town."

    HMS Queen Elizabeth Enters Portsmouth

    HMS Queen Elizabeth Enters Portsmouth

    HMS Queen Elizabeth Enters Portsmouth

  • 17 Apr 2017 18:26 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Chris Waddington, from Southampton Water Sailing Association, wonders if members might be interested in their local racing events.  An evening series of ten events starts on Friday 5th May and a passage series of events starts on 17th June with the Round the Island Race.   

    The first race is free and thereafter an entry fee of £10 per race is charged or £50 for the season.  Racing is very friendly and many aspiring racers have cut their teeth on this series before moving on to more challenging events.

    SWSA Invitation
    SWSA Cruiser Racing Programme 2017
    Solent Marks 2017 - changes
    Solent Racing Chart - central
    S'ton Water Race Chart

    Entry forms, courses and sailing instructions can be downloaded from
    Chris can be contacted directly on

  • 17 Apr 2017 09:51 | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    LNTM No 24/17

    1. NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN by the Queen’s Harbour Master Portsmouth,that following the widening and re-orientation of the Portsmouth Approach Channel, as depicted on the newly published Admiralty Chart 2625 (2 March 2017), further adjustments have been made to the positioning of the Small Boat Channel that runs between 4 Bar Buoy (50 46.97N 001 06.48W) and Ballast Pile (50 47.62N 001 06.83W).  This notice supersedes LNTM 23/17 (Small Boat Channel Re-alignment) and should be read in conjunction with the regulations contained in General Direction 7/10 (Portsmouth Harbour Entrance – Approach Channel, Small Boat Channel, Swashway and Inner Swashway).     

    2.  Following the widening of the Main Approach Channel, the location of the Small Boat Channel over a somewhat narrower and steeper slope has resulted in a reduced tolerance for small craft straying out of the edge of the channel before they experience shoal depths.  For this reason, the route of the channel and traffic management measures have been subtly amended in order to simplify the monitoring of vessel positioning and to reduce the potential for inbound and outbound vessels to force each other in to shallow water or the Main Approach Channel respectively.

    3.   Remaining approximately 50 metres wide throughout its length, the most significant changes are that all vessels using the Small Boat Channel are to leave 4 Bar Buoy to port, whether heading inbound or outbound, and that north of this point, the channel has been straightened from the route currently shown on new edition Chart 2625.  Vessels navigating along the Small Boat Channel should now follow a line that passes from 4 Bar Buoy to approximately 25 metres east of BC outer (as depicted), keeping other passing small craft on their own port side.

    4. Vessels approaching or departing the small boat channel to the south, particularly at low water, should follow the line of the port lateral buoys in order to avoid grounding on the SE corner of Hamilton Bank, turning to follow the line of the channel in vicinity of 4 Bar Buoy.

    5.   In vicinity of BC Outer (red beacon), all vessels should pass to the east of the beacon except those joining or leaving the Small Boat Channel at the Inner Swashway who are to leave it to port accordingly.  This area can become extremely busy, particularly during the summer months, and mariners joining here should converge with caution and avoid forcing others out in to the middle of the harbour entrance.  Similarly, all mariners should be alert to strong cross currents in this area which can sweep vessels in to the main channel. 

    6.    All vessels less than 20 metres in length are to use the Small Boat Channel when entering or leaving Portsmouth, unless specifically exempted from doing so by the Queen’s Harbour Master.  Furthermore, craft using the Small Boat Channel are legally required to comply with the measures contained in General Direction 7/10 (Portsmouth Harbour Entrance – Approach Channel, Small Boat Channel, Swashway and Inner Swashway).  In particular, small craft are not to cross the Main Approach Channel until north of Ballast Pile or South of 4 Bar Buoy; should avoid loitering in the Small Boat Channel; should adjust their speed to remain in the Small Boat Channel rather than overtake and be forced in to the main channel. 

    7.The Harbour Entrance and Main Approach Channel is considered a Narrow Channel in accordance with the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions and Sea (COLREGS) and as such, all mariners are reminded that in accordance with Rule 9(b) “a vessel of less than 20 metres in length or a sailing vessel shall not impede the passage of a vessel that can safely navigate only within a narrow channel or fairway”; vessels over 20 metres in length are classed as the latter, are not to be impeded, and conversely are not permitted to enter the Small Boat Channel or Inner Swashway except in an emergency.

    8.   Further information can be found on the QHM Website at

    9.   Cancel LNTM 23/17.

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