RBOA’s Response to PLA Consultation on Houseboat Moorings

The Residential Boat Owners’ Association (RBOA) has members living on a wide variety of
craft, both wide and narrow beam, and of a variety of styles, on the rivers and canals of
Britain, and on tidal waters, creeks and harbours.

This Association supports the principle of a guidance document, as evidenced in your
Consultation Document, and supports the points raised by Clive Wren (from Hope Pier
Moorings) and by The Barge Association. However, we feel that the guidelines for mooring
lines and fenders are far too prescriptive, and in some cases too prescriptive, taking into
account the wide range of craft to which they are likely to be applied.

The RBOA believes that the PLA’s current perceived need for improved mooring of boats is
an unacceptable solution to solve a problem caused by various vessels capable of high
speeds, including the Clippers operating a passenger boat service on the Tidal Thames above
Wapping; such craft, even though some are designed as low-wash craft, are frequently seen to
be travelling far too fast. Whilst there may have been the odd craft in the past causing
unacceptable wash, the current perceived problem with the mooring of boats appears to have
been exacerbated by the range of vessels currently using the river. It is RBOA’s view that it
is these which need improved regulation, not the boats moored on the tideway. Additionally,
we are given to understand that on some waters “low wash areas” have been established to
help counteract this wash problem.