Contact us at ECP

Garth Cooper(left) and Dick Holness, the joint authors of ‘East Coast Pilot’, pictured here on board during book reseach.

Garth and Dick welcome comments or feedback on any aspect of ECP, and will respond promptly to email.

For the Northern half of the book, email Garth - Great Yarmouth to the Blackwater, chapters one to 11.

For the the Southern half, email Dick - from the Crouch to Ramsgate, chapters 12 to 19.

General queries, or advise us of any changes, email

For the Webmaster, use

Honorary Port Pilots

Early in the life of ECP, we enlisted the help of 'Honorary Port Pilots'. They help us to keep up to date with the latest information on their areas, and are a vital element in the community of East Coast Pilot users. Some are purely leisure sailors, others are connected with the sea and their specific area in a professional way.
    Whatever their backgound, each of them is willing to help the cruising yachtsman get the best out of their stay in these waters and will be pleased to hear from visitors seeking advice.
    We don't have an HPP everywhere - a number have stood down, and our policy now is only to ask people to do the job in areas where there is no other friendly and useful advice readily on hand - for instance, many harbour staff are now more yacht-friendly than they used to be!
    A contact phone number and email address for each HPP at the time that the latest (fifth) edition of ECP was published (August 2019) is included in the relevant chapters in the book. You can contact any of them on email.
    For privacy reasons we do not show phone numbers on the website - if you wish to phone an HPP whose details missed the publication of the book, please email the webmaster and we will get the number to you.
    If all else fails, the authors are very familiar with ‘everywhere’ and especially knowledgeable about their own local areas, and are happy to help. Meet the HPP’s here, in the order in which they appear in the book -

John White - Deben and Woodridge Haven HPP     Email address

John White just seems to have been around on the Deben since the beginning of time. He’s the Harbour Master at Felixstowe Ferry, and was the assistant HM for 15 years before that, gaining recognition for producing the original chartlets and soundings information on the Deben bar. A one-time boat builder, he was a director of the Felixstowe Ferry Boatyard, and is an accomplished sailor. He sails a Seamaster 925 when he’s not crewing on a wide range of craft both locally and overseas.

Alec Moss - Walton Backwaters HPP     Email address

Alec is a member of Walton and Frinton YC, and represents the club on the Hamford Water Management Committee. This group monitors such things as the silting up of the upper channels and the accretions to Pye Sand and Stone Point, navigation in the Backwaters, speed limits and safe mooring. He’s spearheading the setting-up of a Backwaters dredging trust, with the aim of buying dredging equipment to maintain these popular waterways. 

Nigel Harmer - Blackwater HPP     Email address

Some say Nigel Harmer is 850 years old; at least his job as River Bailiff on the Blackwater is! An ex-marine landing craft coxswain, he was a member of the RN sailing team and competed in two Fastnets. Now he sails a She 32 out of Maldon. He comes from a family with a long association of sailing on the Blackwater.

Rob Scriven - Canvey HPP     Email address
Born on Ascension Island ‘a long time ago’, Rob has sailed the East Coast for the past 20+ years, also visiting France, Belgium, and Holland most years. Having started sailing at college, age 13, he has recently served as Commodore at Benfleet YC where he is still based. He was an RYA Race Instructor for 10 years, now retired but still enjoys local dinghy & yacht racing. He is proud owner of Rollercoaster, a Sun Odyssey 40.

Simon Smedley - Conyer and East Swale HPP     Email address

Simon Smedley was brought up in Whitstable and has sailed all his life. Introduced to sailing by his parents, he says that almost every holiday as a child was spent afloat! At Whitstable he sailed Mirrors, then Shearwaters, and graduated early to the cruising life starting with a Silhouette II kept on a drying mooring off Seasalter. He now runs Swale Marina at Conyer.