13 May COVID-19 – Marine Leisure Activities Update from the Harbour Master 13/05/2020
Mariners are hereby advised that, in accordance with the latest government guidance, recreational vessel owners are permitted to use their vessel in Poole Harbour for marine leisure activities as part of their daily exercise and recreation away from their homes.
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has today, issued the following: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-guidance-on-access-to-green-spaces
“All forms of water sports practiced on open waterways, including sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, rowing, kayaking, surfing, paddle-boarding and the use of privately-owned motorised craft (in line with the guidance issued by the relevant navigation authority) are allowed. You can continue to use towpaths for walking, running and cycling, being mindful of other users and people living in boats along the water.”
The above from DEFRA applies to public open spaces and we are urgently seeking clarification if slipways, marinas and yacht clubs can be safely opened. Government officials have previously indicated that marina type operations are to be treated the same as caravan parks. At the moment the advice is that caravan parks should remain closed.
Poole Harbour Commissioners marinas will remain closed until clarification is received and we suggest all other marina type operations in Poole Harbour to do the same.
We are in daily contact with Government Departments, British Ports Association and UK Harbour Masters Association and it is hoped that clarification will be received shortly.
Thank you to all for your patience during this unprecedented time and please continue to follow government guidance, especially regarding social distancing.
Mariners are reminded that radar, telephone and VHF Channels are recorded.
Captain Brian Murphy