Skip to content

Hugh Marriage Posts

Good use for a washing line

I have written before about the day I try to spend each year with the Harbour staff, which they generously refer to as a Harbour Board Member getting work experience. I have just done my 2018 day. We have a super Harbour staff: did you know that 11 of them are lifeboat volunteers, two are volunteer firefighters and one is a volunteer Coastguard? This was just before the bank holiday weekend and the Harbour was getting busy. Two yacht rallies…

Comments closed

No cricket, please

The Salcombe-Kingsbridge Estuary Conservation Forum co-ordinates environmental work in the marine Local Nature Reserve and the Site of Special Scientific Interest. A wide range of people attend including , faithfully, the South Pool Parish Council Chairman and Clerk. Meetings like this are not everyone’s cup of tea. I confess that I have always considered ‘plan’ to be a verb, rather than a noun, and my eyes tend to glaze over when faced with a five-year plan. The Conservation Forum has…

Comments closed

Storing carbon under the sea

In my May 2011 piece, seven years and over 70 posts ago, I wrote about climate change: “we have just had a freezing winter – although the Arctic had a warm one: we just had its cold air”. Seven years later, we’ve had another severely cold spell, unusually with Devon having more snow than most parts of the UK, and again all because the Arctic had a heat bomb – a temperature rise of between 30 and 50 degrees C…

Comments closed

The Mighty Amazing

Last June I wrote about how, in 1819, Halwell Point was the first place where pleasure boats were recorded in Salcombe Harbour. I have been marvelling at a huge stretch of sheltered water, three to five miles across and as far as the eye can see from left to right, without irritating rocks, hazards or navigational marks. It has a 3-knot current flows from West to East, balanced by a warm, steady, wind from East to West; and it conveniently…

Comments closed

Breaking the record at over 30mph

This time last year I wrote about the amazing achievement of Thomas Coville who had just completed a single-handed, non-stop, round the world in Sodebo Ultim in 49 days, at an average speed of 24 knots. In December, another Frenchman sailing single-handed, François Gabart, knocked an extraordinary six days off that record with a circumnavigation in 42 days and 16 hours. Gabart sailed his Ultime trimaran MACIF (named after his sponsors) so fast that he got within spitting distance of…

Comments closed

Harbour Captain wanted

The breaking news is, of course, that, after 3½ years, Adam Parnell is leaving Salcombe to become Head of Tor Bay Harbour Authority and Tor Bay Harbour Master. Like Salcombe, Tor Bay is a municipal harbour (Torbay Council is the Harbour Authority) but geographically it is much more open than Salcombe. The harbour covers Brixham, Torquay and Paignton, each with its own Harbour Master, has 22 miles of coastline and 16 square miles of open sea, sheltered from prevailing south…

Comments closed

Ambitious plans for Egremont and the Plymouth Princess

The latest news from the Egremont Trust is that the project has grown to being over £1m (not yet fully secured, but “close”) and, besides the creation of en-suite bedrooms, would now include a sewage treatment plant (to avoid polluting the Harbour), a desalination plant (because the demand for water was likely to be greater than the shore supply) and two generators (because the electricity supply would otherwise be insufficient). Also included would be new pontoons, which would be built…

Comments closed

What to do about “being extremely busy at the moment”?

The season is finishing with quite a windy spell although, fortunately, nothing compared to the devastation caused by hurricanes and earthquakes in the Caribbean and Mexico. These are, of course, related: powerful storms exert huge forces on the earth’s surface and these trigger the movements which we experience as earthquakes. Climate change is more serious business than a bit of global warming. Nearer home, there is the tricky business of the telephones in the Harbour Office. It has become quite…

Comments closed

The ins and outs of rip tides

One of the books I picked up at the Ways with Words at Dartington was William Thomson’s Book of Tides. This is about the tides around the UK, including the Severn bore, whirlpools and tsunamis (yes, there were tsunamis in the UK in 1755 and 2011). For me, one of the most interesting chapters was on rip tides. Waves crash onto beaches and the water that flows up the beach has to flow back again, taking the easiest route which…

Comments closed