Cowes Harbour Commission
Harbour Authority & Marine Service Provider
Newsletter 26th July 2017
Improved safety and security with harbour CCTV 
A special welcome to our July 2017 newsletter ahead of Lendy Cowes Week and the Rolex Fastnet Race. Do please make a point of reading the relevant Local Notices to Mariners for upcoming events, which can all be found on our website, as well as Notice No. 17 of 2017 on the ‘Safety of Navigation within Cowes Harbour’.

As part of our ongoing commitment to promote and deliver a safety first culture and manage enforcement responsibilities, the Commission has invested in the installation of a harbour CCTV system using the latest available technology. You can read more on the delivery of harbour safety in our lead story below.

Cowes Harbour Commission (CHC) has informed the Isle of Wight Council that the successful and early resolution of returning navigational clearance depths over the new floating bridge chains to the previous charted depths is a CHC priority. The Isle of Wight Council and their engineering design consultants have provided proposals to rectify the situation, which will be actioned and surveyed on the next set of spring tides.

Mainstay Marine, builders of the new floating bridge, are also working with the IW Council to complete the commissioning of the ferry as soon as possible. Meanwhile, Cowes Local Notice to Mariners  No. 15(T) is still valid for Chain Ferry clearance depths. All mariners will be advised of any changes to clearance depths via a further Local Notice to Mariners.

Meanwhile, I would like to congratulate our Assistant Harbour Master Ed Walker on successfully completing his pilotage training to become our fourth authorised Pilot for the Cowes Pilotage Area. Cowes Harbour is the only entry port for commercial shipping trading to the Isle of Wight, with commercial traffic on the rise and therefore our pilotage services in increasing demand. 170 acts of pilotage have been carried out since the beginning of the year; this is 13% up on the same period last year. In 2016 a total of 314 pilotage acts were carried out, up 33% on 2015. These increases are driven to a large extent by the Island Roads highway maintenance project that is likely to continue to produce a high throughput over the next few years.

Do join us next month for all the latest harbour news, plus event previews for the Cowes-Torquay-Cowes offshore powerboat race and the Little Britain Challenge Cup.

Captain Stuart McIntosh Cowes Harbour Master

Photo: Cowes Week fireworks © Paul Wyeth
CCTV enhances harbour security
Cowes Harbour Commission (CHC) has just completed a major project to install an innovative IP-CCTV system to improve the safety management and security of our harbour for the benefit of all users.

The primary purpose of this new CCTV system is to assist CHC in fulfilling its statutory duties and the safe management of harbour activities, whilst enhancing security and enforcement capabilities within the harbour authority’s area of jurisdiction.

The Commission, the local community and other harbour users will also benefit from the following:

- Enhanced safety and security for harbour users: The CCTV will act as a visible deterrent to any persons contemplating breaching the Cowes Harbour General Directions and other enforceable laws (such as theft and criminal damage).

- CCTV 24/7 coverage will supplement CHC’s Harbour Patrol capabilities.

- The safety and security of harbour activities can be monitored and analysed leading to the improvement of operations.

- The provision of live images to the Harbour Office incident control room to aid the remote command and control of an appropriate response in the event of an emergency.

Lendy Cowes Week preview
Regatta organisers Cowes Week Ltd have recently welcomed Lendy - The Property Platform, on board as title sponsor as the next phase of the regatta begins and the event continues to evolve as 'Lendy Cowes Week'.

For regular competitors, those returning to the regatta after a break, or first timers, the week is set to deliver its usual mix of spectacular racing, together with the vibrant festival atmosphere that continues to attract over 100,000 visitors to Cowes during the event.

Hundreds of yachts traversing the Solent on a myriad of courses is an impressive sight, and it is the regatta’s complete mixture of classic and ultra-modern designs that gives the event its uniqueness. Lendy Cowes Week competitors can find all the race documents on the event website, including this year’s Safety Booklet .

Head to the shoreside entertainment schedule for a daily guide to what’s on at all the Lendy Cowes Week venues. There will be some fantastic displays with the Red Arrows performing at 1930 on Friday, 4th August ahead of the iconic finale to the regatta - the Lendy Cowes Week Fireworks at 2130. You can also pick up a copy of the Official Programme for handy what’s on listings, what’s new at this year’s regatta, a guide to the racing fleets and trophies awarded and much more .

Read the full event preview online for lots of regatta tips and useful information

Photo: Cowes Week racing © Paul Wyeth
Summer sun, sea and swimming
Although the water can look extremely inviting on a hot summer’s day, we would like to remind all harbour users and members of the public that swimming is prohibited in Cowes Harbour. There are two main reasons why you should not deliberately enter the water within the harbour:

- There are a lot of vessels using the harbour and they may not be able to see you, particularly the larger ferries and commercial ships. There is a very real risk of being hit and run over by a vessel.

- Strong tides run in and out of the harbour. Even the strongest swimmers would not be able to swim against the tide when it is flowing at its fastest. There is a very real risk of being carried away with the tide.

Rolex Fastnet Race preview
The world's largest, most prestigious offshore sailing event, the Rolex Fastnet Race, will set off from the Royal Yacht Squadron in Cowes on Sunday, 6th August. Organised by the Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC), this will be the 47th edition of the biennial race.

The non-stop race course from the Solent to Plymouth via the Fastnet Rock is 605 nautical miles. Flawless decision-making, determination and total commitment are the essential requirements as crews manage and anticipate the changing tidal and meteorological conditions imposed by the complex course.

The Race continues to attract the most diverse fleet of yachts, from beautiful classic yachts to some of the fastest racing machines on the planet - and everything in between. A truly international and record fleet of 397 boats is expected on the start line with close to 4,000+ crews participating from over 27 countries. A list of race entries is now available on the event website. The start sequence for multiple classes (IRC and Non-IRC) runs from 1100 to 1240, with the first warning signal at 1050 .

Read the full event preview online and find out how to follow the race

Photo: Rolex Fastnet Race start 2015 © Rolex / Kurt Arrigo 
Cowes Harbour Commission | 01983 293952 | chc@cowes.co.uk | cowesharbourcommission.co.uk