and other East Coast



Sign up for FREE

News emails >>

Sign Up


book updates >>

Mail: update for East Coast Pilot Sunny days on the River Orwell

          Cookies are present on this site in connection with advertising, and counting visitor traffic.   


       All site content © Colin Jarman, Garth Cooper and Dick Holness. All Rights Reserved                                                     

Welcome to the East Coast Pilot website

East Coast Pilot’ is a best-selling pilot book for the coast between Lowestoft (Gt. Yarmouth in the new edition) and Ramsgate, now in its 4th Edition and written for all who cruise these waters for pleasure, by three people who do just that. On this website we publish any changes needed to keep your book up to date, and bring you other news and services that can help you enjoy this wonderful cruising ground.   

Do sign up for our free email service. Short email newsletters, sent perhaps 10 times each year, help you keep up to date. Use Twitter? Follow us on @eastcoastpilot ! If you spot changes out there before we do, please tell us, we welcome any feedback about the book or the site, and we will always reply.

“This pilot cannot be too highly recommended to all East Coast yachtsmen”

- The Cruising Association.

 Latest News (this section scrolls - on older devices that may not scroll, click HERE)

New Edition of ECP published

We’re pleased to announce the arrival of the new 4th Edition of ‘East Coast Pilot’! It’s available now direct from Imrays, or from local chandleries and online booksellers.

Site last updated 13th April 2015

Last book updates

Apr  2015>>

Visit other sites in our

East Coast family:



Contact the WEBMASTER

RYA-E website >>

New Chartlets for the Deben and Ore Entrances (Updated 11th April 2015)

Imrays have drawn new chartlets for the Deben and Ore river entrances based on the Trinity House surveys done during March. The chartlets have been approved by Trinity House and are only available on this website, via the Download button which appears on most pages . Note that the extra buoy at the Deben entrance that was placed for part of last summer is now a permanent feature, and is called ‘Knoll Spit’.

The buoy used as the Knoll Spit was previously the Horse buoy from just above Felixstowe Ferry, which will not be replaced.

We understand that the Deben may be surveyed again in 4-6 weeks’ time which may result in a change to this chartlet. We have added a precautionary note to the download about two shallow patches shown N of the Mid Knoll buoy.

Dredging at Ramsgate (7th April 2015)

Mariners are advised that the Grab Dredger ‘Mannin’ will be undertaking a dredging campaign within the Royal Harbour Entrance and West Marina at the Port of Ramsgate, from w/c 20th April until the end of May 2015.

The dredger will be monitoring Channel 14 and vessels are requested to pass at low speed.

Large Sunken Craft at Harty Ferry, beware (Updated 7th April 2015)

A reminder that there is a sunken 50’ converted trawler west of the causeway at Harty Ferry, near the scrubbing posts, approx position 51°21’.3N, 000°52’.6E. Slightly more is visible at LW but all that shows at HW is a very thin white whip aerial which is on top of the stern wheelhouse. The wreck is marked with a large inflatable yellow buoy, apparently near the bow, while the wreck stretches SE from the buoy. The webmaster knows this is a very substantial vessel - keep well clear.

Sunken barge on the Crouch (Updated 7th April 2015)

The sunken barge in the Crouch near Fambridge Yacht Station has now been recovered.

Fuelling at Ramsgate (17th March 2015)

Mariners are advised that the leisure vessel fuel barge at Ramsgate Marina is presently unserviceable.

Marine Gas Oil (diesel) is still available via the Dockmasters, (VHF Channel 14/80 or 07919 211143) between 07:00 – 19:00 hrs daily from the Fishermen’s fuel barge, adjacent to the travel hoist.

Unleaded Petroleum Spirit is currently unavailable.

Sunken boat by Rochester Pier (13th March 2015)

A motor cruiser has sunk beside the public pier just above Rochester Bridge. The pier is closed pending salvage works.

Obstruction in Faversham Creek (27th February 2015)

Medway Ports advise that a report has been received of an unmarked obstruction in Faversham Creek close to the shore line between Buoys No.5 and No.7, in approximate position 51° 20’.193N 000° 54’.244E. Reports received have identified the obstruction as being near to the shore line and being submerged over mid to high tide times.

Kingsferry Bridge - lifting no longer restricted (29th January, updated 22nd Feb 2015)

The long period of repairs to Kingsferry Bridge on the Swale has ended, and the bridge is operating normally again. There is a suggestion that a major refurbishment will eventually be scheduled to replace worn-out machinery.

Foulger’s Gat buoyage - lighting changes (28th January 2015)

Around 27th February, the lights on the Long Sand Inner and Long Sand Outer buoys, marking the ends of Foulger’s Gat, will both be changed to ISO.2s. In addition the range of these lights, and the light on the Long Sand Middle buoy, will all be increased to 5M. This is a direct result of comments from the sailing community about visibility through the Gat.

Sun Pier, Chatham - update  (21st January 2015)

Sun Pier, on the Medway at Chatham, above the Historic Dockyard, will be available for short visits ashore from the end of March. There will be a token-purchase arrangement for return access from shore-side.

Upper Medway - new road bridge construction (31st October 2014)

Construction of a new road bridge across the upper Medway is starting, at northing 51°20’.48N, above Halling in Holborough Reach. The works will involve sheet piling along east and west river embankments and construction of tem­porary access jetties and cofferdams. A temporary navigable span will be maintained at all times, the dimensions of the temporary span will be 20m wide by 5m air draught at MHWS. Air draught when completed will be about 8m.

Queenborough - new pontoon extension ready at last (30th October 2014)

After some months of unfortunate delays, the new pontoon extension to the All Tide Landing (ATL) at Queenborough is now in position. This new facility, which includes the harbour office, will hugely increase the moorings available for visitors who want to walk ashore rather than use the excellent trot-boat service. The pontoon should be open for use within the next week or two. We passed by there this week, it certainly looks impressive - see our Swale page for a photo.

Work starting on the Kentish Flats - new buoy (Updated 6th November 2014)

Work is starting on the extension to the Kentish Flats windfarm, off the N Kent coast.

A Weather Buoy will be established in position 51°.28’.11N, 001°.02’.52E, at the W end of the windfarm.

The deployment work will be done between 9th Nov and 14th Nov 2014.

The Weather Buoy is a Yellow Special Mark which will stand 2.35m above Sea Level with a width of 1.2m. It will have a yellow light, with the characteristics FL(5)Y.20s and a top mark of a yellow cross at a height of 2m above the water.

Another sunken craft in the Medway area (19th October 2014)

A sunken workboat has been reported awash at her moorings adjacent to Hathaway Court on the east side of Tower Reach, in approximate position 51°23’.19N 000°29’.74E.

The sunken vessel is covered at high water. The position suggests the problem is opposite the S end of Strood YC’s pontoons. All vessels should navigate with caution in the vicinity.

Further buoyage changes in Sea Reach (20th Sept 2014)

Further adjustments to the buoyage have recently been made; details are shown on our Thames Updates page.

A New Light on the Backwaters (22nd August 2014)

The No.10 buoy, ‘Baines’, on Hamford Water at the junction with the Walton Channel, has been lit, Q.R.

New Nav Buoy at Maldon (3rd June 2014)

A new PHB has been installed adjacent to the promenade extension at Maldon, marked No.16, at 51⁰43’.647N 000⁰41’.906E.

Hythe Quay, Maldon (24th March 2014)

There is a significant subsidence problem at Hythe Quay. Approximately 25 metres of the quay face has slumped and given way and the Council has had to take steps to reduce the threat to river users, visitors and berth holders by placing a temporary fence along the surface of the quay, and a dry dock has been sunk in place alongside the seaward side of the collapse.

Maldon District Council has taken the matter in hand and has provided funding for repairs and are currently discussing design options for improved facilities with their consultants.  Planning and  licence applications are currently being made.   It is likely that the works will not be completed until the latter part of the year, and with many barges to accommodate and the loss of one mooring tier, potential visiting yachtsmen are asked to make alternative arrangements for this this season.  A number of the local boatyards have berths available and visitors are advised to make arrangements prior to arriving.

   Walton Channel and Stone Point (updated 4th July 2013)

Dredging in June further deepened the Walton Channel at Stone Point, although we are advised that the deep channel itself is very narrow. A new sketch chartlet is now available on this website, see our Downloads page, by kind permission of Titchmarsh Marina, showing depths after the June dredge. Subtract the Harwich height shown to estimate depths at LAT. Paper copies are available from the marina office. We rounded Stone Point at HW+/-3 after the May dredge, with plenty of clearance following the charted line, in a boat of 1.2m draught.

Note that:

No 16 PHB has been adjusted in position to reflect an extension of the shingle point.

No 11 SHB has been moved some way NW to help with finding best water just after the point.

Depending on their boat’s draught, we recommend that navigators should still exercise caution around Stone Pt between LW+/-2H.

The tidal streams now run strongly through the bottleneck at Stone Pt and boats should follow the line closely to minimise the effect of the overfalls and turbulence found near No 16 PHB in wind over tide conditions close to HW.

Take extra care when passing another vessel in this area.

Yarmouth Coastguard MRCC has closed (1st May 2013)

The coastguard station at Great Yarmouth has closed today, for ever. In future all the station’s work will be handled by Humber Coastguard as the primary station and Thames Coastguard at Walton-on-the Naze as the secondary station. The number of Coastguard rescue teams, lifeboats and helicopters will remain the same.
Emergency calls should still be made on 999 “Coastguard” and the call will be handled by whichever of the two stations is available. People who normally contact Great Yarmouth MRCC by phone and live south of Waxham, near Sea Palling, Norfolk, can continue to call on 01493 851338. People living north of Waxham should call 01262 672317, both lines connect with Humber Coastguard.
VHF calls will be dealt with by either Humber or Thames depending on the caller’s location. There is no change to the maritime safety broadcasts or frequencies or schedules.

Fly the ECP flag! ECP burgees now available >>


The web resource for Imray’s ‘East Coast Pilot’

- the first choice

for East Coast cruising

Summary by date