Archive for ‘Latest News’

May 18, 2020

Return to Sailing

There is much talked about return to sailing with much uncertainty.

In outline presently, all watersports are sanctioned, however do take care and as always do conduct your own pre-assessment:-

• Control-the-Controllable (the person; the equipment).

• Have regard to other issues (the wind; the weather; the environment).

•• However do consider the present need for Social-Distancing.

So for example, … don’t go out if there is absolutely no-one to call for help, but do adhere to distancing advice.


Presently and following RYA advice and from a Special-Interest-Group (SIG, hyper-link for much further useful information), we are Not advocating Organised sailing and Club-Houses should remain closed (c.f. pubs & clubs” where it is difficult to conduct distancing); even club toilets could be contentious! Travel to your club in kit, or be prepared to change in-the-car. Casual sailing is encouraged, as are say, simple one-on-one racing challenges, but of course this applies to single-handed sailing and Not for social gatherings in the same vessel (e.g. helm-&-crew) unless from the same household.

Amongst inland waterways in England, The Broads are in an advantageous position with DEFRA formally recognising that the Broads Authority is able and indeed needs to open The Broads in a way which is not necessarily reflected on canals or privately owned reservoirs.

Below is a Very, very approximate ‘Road-Map’ to guide thinking:–

Clubs might start to consider their very gradual step out of restrictions starting perhaps for next month or later, depending on Government advice at that time. As one looks further into the future any now-advice has to be treated with greater uncertainty and circumspection.

Stay Safe, Follow Government Advice, and enjoy a return to sailing

April 6, 2020

NSBA seeks a “Communicator” (Honorarium) ?

Literate in various forms of Social Media, our new “Communicator” should be capable of working to own initiative and presenting NSBA in the best possible ‘modern‘ way !

April 6, 2020

Spring Newsletter 2020

April 4, 2020

Covid-19 Issues, Advice … … and general NSBA-updates

This is not the year we all planned into our boating diaries.
Both this last weekend 4/5-April, and this week following look particularly inviting to get out onto the water, but please follow Central Government advice and,

                      “Stay-at-Home” !

Very recently there has been some churning of issues as regards fallout from coronavirus advice; both Broads-Beat (Police) and Broads-Control (Broads Authority) have been inundated with public calls about hire craft being out and about;  actually these referred to multiple sightings of the same single person hiring a fortnight out of Wroxham before lock-down, who traversed to the southern Broads, kept himself-to-himself,  but who was expected home this coming weekend.

Presently NSBA does not encourage travelling to and from marinas or moorings, and taking to the water should not happen until such time as Central Government has reassessed the Covid situation.

Where craft are in a marina or lie close together at recognised moorings and where a mutually supportive rota has been established for checking on craft, the rota should now include locals who can walk to the site,  but probably not to include travellers from perhaps as far afield as Norwich !
While it might appear to some that getting out onto the water is potentially a very social-distancing activity, it is potential fallout which could become an issue; emergency support if called upon, may itself be put in health-jeopardy and travel to/from the boat is potentially at variance with advice;  it sends the ‘wrong’ message of irresponsibility to onlookers.
During recent Government briefing it was explicitly stated that, “… travel to second homes [ as boats might be described ] is not sanctioned …”.

Yacht Station at Norwich is closed, and those at Reedham and at Gt.Yarmouth have been opened, this being,  “… for safety purposes of liveaboarders who need to access shoreside for vital services …”;   if traffic is perceived as minimal (being reviewed weekly), then both of these will close again shortly.

Tolls is another major current issue being the source of much rumour:
It is quite untrue that Hire Craft are not being asked to pay;  the situation being that hire boats that are not being used and are effectively in storage in their own yards, do not incur a toll and if craft remain ashore then tolls are not payable, but as soon as they go afloat for hire the toll once again becomes due (and indeed at potentially a higher short-term rate).
Broads Authority has published its information [hyper-linked] and while there may very well be frustrations that private owners have in not being able to use their vessels, the Broads Authority is prepared to give careful consideration to exceptional circumstances of financial concerns for boaters unable to meet their commitments.

Having been in discussion with Broads Authority it is quite clear that BA is keenly aware of critical impact on its Tolls income due both to reduced tourism and hirings and to private owners potentially not launching for the whole season. With this in mind BA has already made application to DEFRA for special consideration for critical minimum additional funding;  NSBA has been asked by boaters whether to expect Tolls support and in this respect it is felt that NSBA should primarily support BA’s case rather than drive a separate distraction which might be seen as trying, “to burn the candle at both ends”. It would best benefit boaters if most can be made of one principal line of bidding to ensure that the Navigation Budget remains viable beyond July.

NSBA General Purposes Committee took a tough decision at short notice in cancelling the recently scheduled Flag Officers’ Event,  but that does not mean that we’ve stopped doing other ‘stuff’.

NSBA is actively in direct contact with Network Rail regarding their proposed programmes of renovation work on the Swing-Bridges, this being scheduled between Oct-2021 and Mar-2024 through those three successive winters.
NSBA is now also a front-line consultee regarding potential mitigation during any proposed closure by Network Rail as unfortunately happened during the last Christmas holiday period.
  Haven Bridge at Gt.Yarmouth has its problems and NSBA forwarded complaints through RYA (East Region) to the RYA(HQ) legal support desk to apply pressure on ‘Highways’.
NSBA was particularly active with RYA through the last 6-months of Inspection of the Gt.Yarmouth Third River Crossing project. We were able to make representations and were involved in a hazard identification workshop. We have gained some potential benefits for boaters and feel that our involvement has been valuable.

NSBA understands the significant impact that the coronavirus is having on many people both in terms of their own and their family’s health and livelihoods, as well as with disrupted leisure plans in general.
As much as we love boating on The Broads, we need to be sensible and pragmatic about what is possible. The Committee will be reviewing the season and revising its plans and responses in the context of the potentially devastating effect this disease may have on activities and our communities.

NSBA also recognise that once this crisis is over, organising future events will not be a top priority for everyone, or easy, and that there will be long term economic and travel difficulties for everyone.
However NSBA is standing by to swiftly adjust schedules and reorganise its events in a responsible way, with a considered approach to take into account everyone’s safety and well-being.

Finally, and above all,  please recognise the three words of,  “Stay at Home”.
If you are eventually able to go boating, please remember that initially it may be not yet be classed as a social event, but simply a time for personal exercise only, like going for a run or a cycle-ride (this is not yet the case, but looking into possibilities for the future while we await further instructions or advice).

For the short-term do,    Stay at Home !

Stay safe and wash your hands … and we’ll meet again once it is all over.

Chair, NSBA

April 4, 2020

Suspension of Haven Bridge openings – Covid-19

MARINERS ARE HEREBY ADVISED that we have suspended Haven Bridge openings to non- essential passage, with immediate effect. This decision has been taken in the interest of safeguarding our employees, by limiting their exposure to others and maintaining social distancing, where practically possible.

Access to commercial vessel traffic for “key worker” status businesses and pilot boats, life boats and similar will be permitted, where possible. Leisure crafts will unfortunately be denied passage as they are considered non-essential. It is our plan to resume normal service when Government advice suggests it is safe to do so.

On behalf of Harbour Master 02/04/2020

November 4, 2019

Autumn 2019 Newsletter

The autumn 2019 newsletter is available to download here.

September 4, 2019

NSBA Broadland Youth Regatta 2019 Results

Congratulations to all who took part in the event at Hickling Broad Sailing Club on 31 August, whether as sailor, organiser or supporter.

A full report sits in the Spring-2020 Newsletter,  and  the results can be downloaded here..

August 5, 2019

HMRC consultation on diesel fuel used in pleasure craft – [Closed 09-Sep-2019]

HMRC launched consultation on Implementation of the CJEU judgment on diesel fuel used in private pleasure craft

HM Revenue and Customs was inviting views on, and seeking information about, proposed changes to the rules for red diesel used in private pleasure craft as a result of the judgement of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). This judgement ruled that the UK’s  taxation rules for diesel used in private pleasure craft contravened the Fuel Marker Directive and thus  private diesel powered pleasure craft will in future be required to use white diesel for propulsion.

HM Revenue and Customs’ 8-week consultation set out the changes the government intends to make to bring the UK’s practice into line with the Directive and seeks evidence about the impact of the changes on users of diesel powered craft and their fuel suppliers.

The responses will have been used to help determine whether a period will be required for suppliers and users of diesel fuel to adapt to using only white diesel for propulsion of private pleasure craft and, if needed, the length of any such period. Affected members were therefore encouraged to respond to the consultation which seemed to be aimed more at individual owners than organisations representing them.

The consultation closed at 11:45pm on 9 September 2019.

Boaters should experience no change in respect of their use of red diesel both in the UK and overseas until the UK Government makes changes to existing legislation.

The consultation is available at:

July 23, 2019

Swing Bridges – update

The first two bridges were both built in 1906 and are effectively at “end of life”. Network Rail have carried out engineering studies and consultations which recently concluded that replacement opening structures are the preferred long term maintenance option. However special funding is required, which Network Rail intended to apply for but the prognosis of success was so poor that NWR have reverted to a maintenance programme;  this will run through the next three winters 2020/23.

Last year we asked for evidence of the effect of bridge closures and asked that as many events are reported as possible.  In order to support the case for the special funding for replacement bridges;  responses were not usefully forthcoming.

Please can you advise any delays you have experienced waiting for the Reedham and Somerleyton swing bridges to open to the river. Did the delay cause you to miss appointments, miss events, miss the tide, or incur other costs? All events considered.  Please send details of any problems as set out below to

Your name  
Date of delay  
Details of delay  
Consequences of delay  

Thank you.

July 22, 2019

Ramuz Trophy – 28 September 2019

Waveney & Oulton Broad Yacht Club  hosted this prestigious event on Saturday 9th November, having been postponed from the month previous due to exceptionally strong winds.  It was sailed in Squib Class keel boats provided by the host club.

This annual “Club Champions” event is open to teams from any organisation or club affiliated to the NSBA.  The Notice of Race remains available for Reference to download here .


1st Snowflakes SC;    2nd Beccles ASC;    3rd Waveney Sailability;

4th Waveney & Oulton Broad YC (Hosts);    5th Royal Norfolk & Suffolk YC;    6th River Cruiser Class

[Other entries in alphabetical order:    Coldham Hall SC,  Hickling SC,  Lady YC,  Norfolk Broads SC,  Norwich Frostbite SC ]