Chairman’s Blog – 31st July 2016

Hi! I’m Mike McGregor, Chair of the Port Edgar Berth Holders Asociation. There’s sailors and there’s berth holders, and most people with boats are obviously both. I’m happy to be classed mainly in the latter category. For me, a sunny windless afternoon at the pontoon, relaxing in the cockpit with a small beverage is more congenial than tacking against wind, tide and rain from beyond the bridges.

I’m sorry there’s been quite a gap since the last Blog, but we’ve been rejigging the online stuff, and I intend to keep in better communincation in future, to give you a few thoughts on current and proposed happenings at Port Edgar and around our coasts. So here we go!

The Clock Change to BST has been and gone, as has 1st June, and the Summer Solstice. It’s Summertime, in fact August is upon us, however much the recent chills and downpours may make you doubt it.

Boats are back in the water, though I’m still carrying out essential maintenance before managing that first trip past the marina entrance. We all look forward to it.

The PE BHA Committee met at the end of May. Our minutes are on the BHA notice board on the Loop Shed. Since then I’ve been talking with Fraser Sturgeon of Port Edgar Marina (PEM) management about some of the issues.A few items from our discussions :

Pontoon Safety: I must say I like the inspection routines in force to keep tabs on Health & Safety. Location schematics showing positions of Rescue Ladders, Life Buoys and Fire Extinguishers are posted on the notice boards outside the PEM Admin Office and on the Loop Shed. We had raised some issues about their accuracy, but they are now fully up to date. It’s worth having a check to see how things are sited near your berth. I have also seen details of the procedures for the testing and checking on extinguishers to ensure they are available and in working order. These seem totally practical.

Drinking Water: The committee had concerns on the availability of drinking water. Tests are carried out on the supplies to the toilets in the Mens and Women’s changing areas, where the sinks have notices to indicate the water is not drinking water. The main reason for the notices is that the water is not off the Mains. It does undergo regular tests for purity, especially to prevent problems such as Legionnaire’s disease emanating from the Showers. There is drinking water available from the cooler in the PEM Office.

Changing Room Security: Lockers are available in the changing areas, but are not lockable. Problems of replacing lost keys are the reason. It is expected that there will be a change in the current arrangements in the near future.

The BHA Committeee will be keeping these and other issues under consideration, and will keep you in touch.

Finally, if you have any issues that you would like to raise as a Berth Holder – or even as another User of, or Visitor to Port Edgar – and you feel we might be able to assist in any way, why not contact us? Our email address is on the Website.

Mike McGregor, PE BHA Chair.

Chairman’s Blog – December 2014

Dear Berth-holders

As many of you will know, I have taken over as chairman from Frank Pullen until the next AGM which will be held on 23rd March 2015. Mike McGregor has joined the committee as vice-chairman. We are very grateful to Frank for his 5 years in post when he has fought our corner with marina managers, Edinburgh Leisure and Edinburgh Council, to ensure that facilities in the marina were properly maintained and charges were reasonable. We have kept our members informed through our website, notice board on the loop shed and regular email blogs and have set up the weather station and live web scan. With our encouragement and assistance the new marina managers have installed free WiFi to the pontoons. They also give regular updates on their Facebook page. Next year’s charges have not yet been decided but are expected to rise by no more than 3%.

Parking: There is a beautiful new parking area where the derelict “Norwegian Block” used to be. It is intended that this will be reserved exclusively for berth holders and marina staff, with vehicle entry controlled by a gate, opened by a code or key fob. All visitors will use the red gravel, parking area close to the bridge.

The “Hub”: this new development to be built in 2016, on a site to the west of the scout hall, will house the administrative offices, a bar and Bistro and the Yacht Club which will rent a lounge/ meeting/ office area with balcony overlooking the Forth. PEYC committee are keen to share this premises with the berth holders, perhaps as Associate members at a reduced subscription.

Travel Hoist: My boat was taken out last week and it was a fairly painless experience (– except for the charge!) Following an accident, when a boat owner slipped off the hoist when coming down the ladder, a safety cage has been added to prevent further falls. Pressure washing is carried out by the site staff before the boat is transported to its cradle in the boat park.

Boat park: Electricity supply is being improved and connections for all boats are promised in the near future. Temporary cones are placed across the entrance to stop non boat owners bringing cars into this area. Punctures have been reported from sharp objects buried in the gravel.

Cardiac Defibrillator: this is now installed and all marina staff are trained in its use. If required the office staff or duty officer will bring it urgently.

Marina Facilities: For hygiene reasons, shared water hoses will not be provided on the pontoons. We noted that there are no longer disposal points for used oil cans and paint tins. Russell has promised to rectify this.

East Coast Sailing Festival: This will be held at Port Edgar between Thursday 20th – Sunday 23rd August, 2015 by Forth Yacht Clubs Association and PEYC. It will comprise yacht racing, including restricted sail classes for the occasional racer, a rowing regatta and a cruiser muster. It is hoped that cruising yachts from other clubs on the Forth and Tay, as well as those at Port Edgar, will take part in this event. An interesting programme is planned including day cruises with civilised lunch stops at other clubs. The evening social events organised by the Yacht Club will be included. For those wishing to help, we would like some berth holders to assist in welcoming visitors and some yachts may be invited to act as committee boats during the event.

Boat Jumble: The BHA hope to hold its annual Boat Jumble sale in late February /early March. This will probably be in the Scout hall on a Sunday morning. Don’t throw out your useful junk yet. Someone might buy it!

Annual General Meeting: This will be held on Monday 23rd March in the Yacht Club with interesting speakers. We urgently need new members on the committee to take the Association forward into what promises to be an interesting and exciting future for Port Edgar- so how about it?

Yahoo Group: We are planning to set up an internetchat room” so that members can discuss matters of interest, request crew, offer advice to others or pass on complaints.

Contact Us: The committee welcomes any feedback, observations or information from members. Please look at our website ( ) and contact us on . For information about cruising on the Forth, look at (

Murray Carmichael

Yacht insurance abroad…

I raised the following insurance query with PBO and I asked “If I am dismasted etc. in foreign waters, what cover have I, as skipper, to get my crew home and a replacement crew out when repair is complete?”  Here is a summary of the responses:
  • What’s important is that you chose a policy that complements your sailing and gives you the reassurance that should the scenario you mentioned occur you and your crew are looked after. Should you be sailing outside UK waters and alongside your own boat insurance it is paramount that all crew have a travel policy in place and they have fully disclosed sailing as an activity as some travel policies can exclude sailing.
  • Moving onto your own boat insurance I can’t comment for other insurers but Navigators include “Get You Home Cover” which gets added on to Brest-Elbe cruising ranges which gives cover up to a maximum of £1000 to pay for crew to return to the UK and to get a delivery crew to return the vessel to the home port. This is if the vessel is damaged rendering her unseaworthy by something covered by the policy if it puts it out of use for 7 days minimum, or if someone on board is injured or becomes ill preventing them from sailing for 7 days minimum and it leaves the crew without sufficient experienced crew.
  • If your crew and/or guests suffer financial loss as a result of an incident caused by your negligence as the owner/skipper then they may well be able to claim back some or all of their costs under the liability section of your insurance policy.
  • The absolute key is to fully understood the policy you have purchased and as a result enjoy your boating.
Those of you sailing abroad would do well to check insurance… it is all too easy to take cover for granted.


Chairman’s Blog – late September 2014

In an exchange of comms with Marina management the following is worth noting:
1. Hoses.  The marina will not be equipping the pontoons with hoses as they cannot  guarantee the healthy nature of water supplied.

2. Defibrillator.  Currently the defib equipment is located in the office.  All marina staff have been trained in its use.  An outdoor case is being purchased and will be installed in a handy place when appropriate signage will be installed.

3. Slipway.  I had suggested that to ensure correct parking of boats on the slip that markings on the slip clearly show where the boat hoist will operate.  No plans at present to mark the slip but conversations will be held with road marking team will follow soon.

4. WiFi.  Free wireless broadband has now been set up for the marina pontoons and the site. The Management believe that the weather station and CCTV remain under BHA  management.

Hope that you have all enjoyed the Indian Summer.

BLOG – Sailing School

I caught up with James this morning and here is a short statement of progress at the sailing school:

What was promised on takeover has been achieved. A full programme of courses is offered and courses are filling and the school is busy. Despite the late start there has been a good take up and the staff are kept busy with plenty of students. Furthermore the programme of vessel replacement is being brought forward and new vessels such as the paddle boards have been introduced.

Staffing has been accomplished including those needed for the winter. However, James Urquhart has tendered his resignation as he is moving to the West Coast. Chris Bradby has stepped up as Chief Instructor, James Pearson is now the Principal and Bosun, and Caroline Pearson is the Business Development Manager.

Frank Pullen


1st July 2014