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Hugh Marriage Posts

Another forecast – no showers in July or August

The Harbour Board has been trying for 20 years or more to provide showers for the crews of visiting yachts. That’s not a luxury: it’s no more than what a basic campsite would provide. Visitors to continental ports are always glad of the facilities proudly provided by the local town; and showers onshore help keep the harbour water clean. But in Salcombe there have always been objections of one kind or another and, even though the yacht club allows visitors…

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The answer is blowing in the wind

Climate change is important and controversial. Some (fewer by the day) argue about how much of it is produced by burning fossil fuels: but there no dispute that climate change is happening. However, exactly how the climate is changing is not so clear. We know about significant ozone layer losses and that each year tends to be warmer than the last. Yet we have just had a freezing winter – although the Artic had a warm one: we just had…

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Easter 2011

At Christmas, I reported that Kingsbridge, Lincombe and Batson were about to be dredged. Now they are all done, and very successfully too. The water-injection dredging turned out to be fully as clean as hoped: the mud from Kingsbridge dropped dutifully just outside Kingsbridge basin on the inside of the curves of the channel, and the mud from Lincombe and Batson swept outside the harbour, probably to Bolt Head. Natural England now use our harbour as an exemplar of environmental…

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The problems of marketing

Whilst harbour dues and mooring charges for residents obviously provide the major part of the harbour’s income, an important third comes from fees and charges to visiting yachts. What is more, as there is no real possibility of increasing the number of resident moorings, that element of revenue can be boosted only by general increases in charges. However, as far as visitors are concerned, there should be some possibility of increased revenue as the number of visitors has dropped consistently…

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A review of SHDC assets in Salcombe

Kingsbridge was dredged in February. The dredger worked for two hours either side of the spring high tides and it all went well. The silt has been reduced to just above the gravel bed of the basin, which is as far as one can safely go. Our spring high tides are always around 6 or 7 o’clock, so the dredger sometimes had to work at night or early morning, but that was the only way to get the job done.…

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Planning for the next five years

It is now nearly five years since the Harbour Board, which used to consist solely of local councillors, was reconstituted to have a majority of members appointed by open competition. It follows that the current Board’s opening Five-Year Plan is now drawing to a close. These pages have recorded some of the things which have been done over the last five years: but how should we approach the next five years? At one level, much won’t change: the Harbour will…

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Christmas 2010: a possible present for South Pool

I got into terrible trouble when I recently said sweetly that speeding down the creek was a particular issue on summer evening high tides at the weekends. A reader ʾphoned to say that I was ignoring the serious speeding which took place at other times. Heaven forbid. This season no fewer than 48 written warnings for speeding have been issued by the Harbour Master, and there has also been one successful prosecution for anti-social behaviour. Sadly, speeding still goes on…

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Making -2 the standard

By November’s Harbour Board you know how well the harbour did over the summer. The answer is very well until July but as soon as the school holidays started the number of visitors dropped off steeply. There weren’t as many visiting yachts around in August, which is normally the peak month and, it seems, other ports had the same experience. But some things held up, like the water taxi income, so it wasn’t all bad. The Board has now taken…

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Tough decisions

After the sleepy days of summer, the October Harbour Board meeting always has a back-to-school, back to hard work, quality about it. The budget and fees for the next year are set – to allow for South Hams District Council’s lengthy procedures – and there was also the issue of improving enforcement of the rule that only SHDC Council Tax payers can retain a harbour mooring (you don’t, of course, have to be a local resident to have a commercial…

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Destination Kingsbridge

We refer to “Salcombe Harbour” but Salcombe is not, of course, the largest town on the water. Kingsbridge is over twice the size of Salcombe, if not so close to the sea or so accessible at all states of the tide. Much has been done in recent years to encourage visitors to the harbour to include a trip to Kingsbridge. There are lots of reasons for this: Kingsbridge is an interesting market town in its own right; it provides plenty…

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