Law of Yachts and Yachting

Page 220




  • 1. Introduction 220
  • 2. Marinas 222
  • 3. Rights and liabilities 228

1. Introduction

[9-001] Introduction. The first preoccupation of any yacht owner is where to keep her. Indeed, the cost of a permanent mooring, particularly in a purpose-built marina, is likely to be the largest single item in the annual budget if the owner does not employ a professional crew. The substantial number of new yachts coming onto the market, and the long life of yachts made of GRP,1 means that the demand for marina berths is ever-increasing. Not all yachts are moored in marinas, however. The traditional swinging mooring is still to be seen in the creeks and natural harbours around the coasts of England and elsewhere, but their numbers are dwindling as harbour commissioners seek to make better use of the available space with trots (where the craft is secured fore and aft in line with the current or tidal stream) and marinas.2 Most major commercial ports around the world now have facilities for yachts, and indeed many of them have converted former commercial docks, which have become redundant owing to the growth of containerised shipping of dry cargo, into yacht marinas. One of the first was St Katherine’s Dock, downstream of Tower Bridge in London. The underlying legislation governing the port is usually a statute dating from the nineteenth century,3 which

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is, however, still applicable to ships calling at the port, including yachts. Byelaws are also adopted and published by the local Port Authority.4

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