Notices to Mariners Week 51

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UKHO Permanent/Temporary/Preliminary

1. BELGIUM – Buoy. – New North Cardinal Buoy temporarily installed on the north side (!) of the Kleine Rede channel approaching Ostend from the West.
2. ENGLAND – East Coast – Depths. – The continuing changes on the western edge of the Scroby Sands off Great Yarmouth and in the Holm Channel approaches with a total of 7 reductions of depth. Two images here, the first image includes changes notified in NtM No 5960 several weeks ago.
3. ENGLAND – East Coast – Depths. – 5 new reduced depth in and around the Woolwich Barrier. But at all 4m+ unlikely to hinder leisure craft.
4. ENGLAND – East Coast – Spoil grounds. – An enlarged ‘Spoil Ground’ area north of the West Inner Gabbard Special Buoy.
5. ENGLAND – South East Coast – NM Blocks. – Two very similar UKHO Blacks for two charts giving good coverage of the Harbour of Ramsgate.
6. ENGLAND – East Coast – Depths. – This Notice redraws the 10m contour around the South Cross Sand which is the outer sands off Great Yarmouth. This year and in particular in recent weeks there has been a series of Notices notifying of reduced depths and the move of the Barley south cardinal. This involves Notice 3505, 5833, 5960, 6010 and Trinity House No 5. All changes are now incorporated into the one image.


1. EAST COAST OF ENGLAND – THAMES ESTUARY – SUNK PRECAUTIONARY AREA – SUNK CENTRE LIGHTVESSEL, Latitude 51° 50.100’N., Longitude 001° 46.020’E. On about 17th December, 2020 existing Light Vessel to be temporarily removed and a replacement Lighted Buoy established in lieu, as follows:- Pillar: Red and white vertical stripes: Mo.(A)15 seconds: Red spherical topmark. Racon, Type: Agile Frequency, Morse “C”, Nominal Range: 10 miles, Frequency: X band 9320 MHz to 9500 MHz: S band 2920 MHz to 3100 MHz, Display period: On 20 seconds. Off 40 seconds. Total 60 seconds. AIS Transmission; MMSI Number 992351034. Mariners are advised that the transmitted message 21 will be displayed as “Sunk Centre”. Further notice will be given when the Lighted Buoy is removed and the Light Vessel re-established.
2. SEA REACH – DREDGING OPERATIONS – (This notice replaces L18 of 2020 which is hereby cancelled): On or about the 10th December 2020, the programme of maintenance dredging in Sea Reach will recommence. Dredging will take place on the ebb tide at several locations between London Gateway and Sea Reach 1 Buoys, as indicated in the chartlets below. The dredgers ‘VICTOR HORTA’ or ‘CHARLEMAGNE’ will undertake the works and may be interchanged at short notice. The survey vessel ‘LIBERTAS’ will continue to work in the area, in support of the operations. The ‘VICTOR HORTA’ or ‘CHARLEMAGNE’ will be capable of re-positioning to facilitate navigation, provided sufficient notice is given. During dredging operations (on the ebb tide only), the position and identity of the dredger will be included in the routine half-hourly broadcasts by London VTS. Whilst the VICTOR HORTA or CHARLEMAGNE are undertaking dredging operations, all vessels intending to transit the area that require the use of the main Yantlet Channel must advise London VTS of their ETA at the dredger’s location, a minimum of 30 mins in advance, to ensure effective traffic management.
3. THE SWALE – FERRY REACH – KINGSFERRY BRIDGE MAINTENANCE – Lifting Restrictions 7th – 10th December 2020 – Network Rail have informed Peel Ports about planned maintenance taking place on the Kingsferry Bridge from 7th December up to and including 10th December 2020. The work will involve a 6 or 8 hour lockdown of all electrical power on all affected days and will cause disruption from approximately LW-3hrs to LW + 3hrs (see below). Between the times stated on the dates below bridge lifts will not be possible.
07.12.2020 – 6hr lockdown off all electrical power at engine rooms – Engine room Isolation between 08:00 – 14:00 LW Sheerness – 10:50
08.12.2020 – 8hr lockdown off all electrical power at engine rooms – Engine room Isolation between 08:30 – 16:30 LW Sheerness – 11:52
09.12.2020 – 6hr lockdown off all electrical power at engine rooms – Engine room Isolation between 11:00 – 17:00 LW Sheerness – 13:03
10.12.2020 – 6hr lockdown off all electrical power at engine rooms – Engine room Isolation between 12:00 – 18:00 LW Sheerness – 14:14
Further information may be obtained from Medway VTS on VHF Channel 74, call sign “Medway VTS” or telephone 0151 949 6148 or 0151 949 6650 or from Kingsferry Bridge on VHF Channel 10.
4. Harwich Harbour – Maintenance Dredging – on or about the 8th of December 2020 the dredger Sospan Dau (LOA 70.30m) will commence maintenance dredging in the harbour, for a period of approximately 5 days. Materials will be disposed of to the beneficial sites in the River Stour and River Orwell. Detailed dredger movements can be obtained from Harwich VTS on VHF Channel 71. Lights and shapes as required by Collision Regulations will be exhibited and a listening watch on VHF Channel 71 will be maintained throughout. Chartlet showing the disposal sites in the Stour and Orwell can be seen on the Temporary List on: Notices to Mariners
5. Outer Crouch No 3 Lighted Buoy, River Crouch – the Outer Crouch No 3 Lighted Buoy in approximate position is back in operation.
6. Port of Wells – Dredging
7. Norfolk Broads – Network Rail Swing Bridges at Reedham and Somerleyton – Network Rail Swing Bridges at Reedham and Somerleyton will not be operating on 25 December 2020 or 26 December 2020. Normal service will be maintained prior to these dates and again on 27 December 2020. The bridges will be without an Operator from 22:00hrs on 24 December 2020 and will reopen at 06:00hrs on 27 December 2020. Somerleyton Swing Bridge will be left open to river users during these dates. Please contact Network Rail on 0345 711 4141 if additional information is required.
8. And finally – London Array are sharing their Notices to Mariners – finally. Perhaps last week’s plea worked!

Wreck – All mariners are advised that a known wreck lying to the south of WTG H17 has become exposed. An archaeological Exclusion Zone (AEZ) already exists to protect this known wreck. Marine users are requested to maintain a safe distance around this wreck and current AEZ. Further surveys are planned in 2021. (Comment – Turbine H17 is well within the ‘field’ so not where we would go. But an interesting wreck. Looks like a timber vessel – perhaps and the shape looks like a huge Viking ship but at 65m cannot be. So a Cutty Sark type (the Cutty Sark is 64.5m) Nice image. Have a look on the Temporary list and scroll down.

9 – London Array – Exposed subsea cables – All mariners are advised that recent surveys indicate a number of exposed high voltage subsea cables as identified below. It is expected that these exposures will remain throughout the winter. Further surveys and updates are expected to to follow in summer 2021. (Comment – loads exposed! The important/interesting ones are between Turbines A15 and A14 (8 of them). Twixt A15 and A14 would be the place to pass if you were going to cut direct into and out of Foulger’s Gat. According to the data the exposed cables are all at 6m+ so a matter for you. We can expect so action in the Spring. See the images on the Temporary List on the above quoted web page.

Local NtMs compiled by and reproduced by kind permission of Roger Gaspar, author of Crossing the Thames Estuary