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About Salcombe Harbour

I write regularly about Salcombe Harbour for local residents on the east side of the Harbour. If you would like to follow the blog, please click on follow in the right-hand menu. You can also email me through the contact form. There is also a think-piece which I gave at Salcombe Yacht Club in March 2014 on the future of Salcombe Harbour. This is the last of my speeches in the side-bar.  

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Planning for the summer

In October 2014, commenting on a super-yacht in Salcombe, I remarked that the Cunard Captain, Inger Klein Thorhauge, who was born and brought up in the Faroe Islands, must have made the ultimate super-yacht visit by taking the Queen Victoria into Klaksvik. And now, as this lovely picture kindly made available by James Day shows, the Queen Victoria has paid a visit locally when she moored off Hope Cove and Thurlestone recently. Jonathan Ward is currently the Captain: he hails…

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Magic in the air

The Harbour may be empty but there is still stuff going on. The Salcombe-Kingsbridge Conservation Forum has been considering the effects of a lockdown summer. One of these was that more takeaways meant more litter since pizza boxes rapidly overflow the available bins and a gust of wind then carries the boxes into the water. For some reason, as yet undiscovered, fat, oils and, it seems, paints, are repeatedly being poured into the Kingsbridge road drains but, as these drains…

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The band plays on

2020 has been an extraordinary year. I wouldn’t recognise a pangolin if I met one (not that this is likely), yet this most docile of creatures, which eats only ants and termites, has brought the world to a standstill. And it’s not over yet: it now emerges that mink, rats, mice, ferrets or voles can catch Covid-19 and pass a mutation back to humans. 2021 has significant rays of hope but also potential black clouds. Some extraordinary things have come…

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Difficult times, difficult decisions

The autumn is when the Harbour’s infrastructure gets maintained and the moorings lifted and inspected. It is also when the Harbour Board looks at how the finances have turned out and sets a fresh budget, fees and charges for next year. It is, of course, pretty problematic to foresee what may happen next year and equally difficult to work out whether to freeze everything, or to plan ahead as usual. In the end, the Board opted for business as usual,…

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Fishing and the death of African elephants

The summer was fine, the people returned, and the Harbour was busy. Much of the financial crisis which loomed over it in June may have largely (but not completely) melted away, which is a big relief as it reduces the need for steep increases in fees next year. However, sadly, September’s traditional yacht-club rallies did not happen. They were always going to be problematic as many crews involve people from more than one household, but any hesitancy about whether they…

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Laws apply to everyone

High summer sees the Harbour at its busiest, but there are always parts of it that are quiet, relaxed and beautiful. This is in large measure because the ria is quite heavily regulated by byelaws for the Harbour, byelaws for the nature reserve, regulations because it is a Site of Special Scientific Interest, regulations in respect of fishing, and requirements under the Port Marine Safety Code. It is no surprise, then, that as the new website is being developed, the…

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Difficult decisions post-lockdown

That was quick! All of a sudden the Harbour has filled up, boats launched, moorings taken, beaches buzzing and even the sunshine has returned (at least while I am writing this) and our solar panels are producing hot water. It was a speedy transformation brought about by the coming together of the pent-up energy of the boating community, some of whom would normally have gone abroad at this time of year, and the astonishing hard work and preparedness of the…

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Clean waters and history

In these difficult and troubling times, there is a need to seek out good news and cheer. So let’s start with the fact that the sea water temperature around Salcombe is 14°C, which is the average for this time of year; and the 15°C water has reached Ushant and is nudging north towards us. The even better news is that the Harbour’s certified bathing beaches – North Sands, South Sands and Mill Bay – have all tested “Excellent” for water…

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Welcome to the Lady Mary

At last the Harbour is being brought back to life again following the partial relaxation of lockdown which came into effect in the middle of May. At this stage, the idea is to open it up mainly for locals and hope that, if all goes well, there can be a further relaxation in early July. At least this level of loosening allows boats which are high and dry on Batson car park to be launched and put on moorings. One…

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Problems in Polynesia

Well, I’m still here and feeling a great deal better than when I wrote last month. In these strange times, the Harbour Board has met virtually – or should one say, has virtually met? Each of us was sitting at home trying to figure out what on earth is going to happen over the course of this year, pretty inconclusively, as you might imagine. The staffing has obviously been reduced but, although the Harbour is empty, there is still work…

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