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Haven Bridge Reopens: A Temporary Respite for the Broads Boating Community

We were pleased to hear that Peel Ports' three-month blockade at Great Yarmouth's Haven Bridge has finally been eased. However, despite the significant inconvenience and considerable expense incurred by numerous boaters unable to leave the Broads, the reprieve remains only temporary. Such closures are in breach of the 1866 Great Yarmouth Port and Haven Act and the 1925 Great Yarmouth Haven Bridge Act, making the ongoing situation all the more frustrating for those affected. The recent closure effectively blockaded the Broads for 3 months, forcing boaters to take long and expensive detours, with many unable to move their vessels out to sea. 


The reopening, while welcome, certainly does not solve all the underlying problems. Earlier this year, we highlighted just how unwelcoming the Port of Great Yarmouth is to recreational sailors looking to enter or exit the Broads from the North Sea, as well as to commercial enterprises in our rivers.  In our letter to Great Yarmouth Port Authority in June, we stated on behalf of our members, many of whom are boat owners, that this closure was a breach of legislation and that we expect better from the authorities entrusted to protect the legal right of navigation.

 

Peel Ports would do well to look at their sister port further south at Lowestoft. Here, Lowestoft Port, run by ABP, offers excellent masting/demasting and waiting facilities. The staff there are helpful, friendly, and more than happy to accommodate those exercising their legal right of navigation in and out of the Broads.

 

We call on Peel Ports, Norfolk County Council, Great Yarmouth Council and the GY Port Authority to find a long-term solution that ensures that the Haven Bridge is permanently operational for all users and that Gt Yarmouth is made safer and more welcoming for all who navigate there. We need a commitment to maintaining access between the Broads and the North Sea, supporting local businesses, and respecting the rights of the boating community. The Broads Society will continue to lobby for a permanent reinstatement of the Haven Bridge.

 

Thank you for reading.

 

Stay tuned for more updates on this and other important issues affecting our waterways.



Letter to the GYPA Clerk 170624
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Good response from the Society. A great shame that Peel Ports have acted in this fashion.

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