+44 (0)1726 832471 reception@foweyharbour.co.uk VHF Channel 12

Safety

Fowey Harbour, especially the lower harbour area is a busy place with both leisure and commercial craft.

Our Harbour Staff are here to make your stay with a safe and positive experience. Please stay safe by keeping clear of commercial vessels and by respecting others.

Always observe the 6 knot speed limit and other Harbour Byelaws.

Please follow our safety advice:

  • Make sure that your boat and crew are properly equipped for the activity that you are doing. Wear your lifejackets (they are useless unless you do!) and wear your kill cord, for your safety and others.
  • Keep your kit secure and do not leave valuables on display for opportunist thieves. A Boat Watch scheme operates around the estuary, run by volunteers from Golant Boat Watch supported by Devon & Cornwall Police, they operate regular patrols around the harbour.
  • Be aware of navigational hazards: Ferries operate in the Harbour between Fowey and Polruan and a car ferry runs between Caffa Mill, Fowey and Bodinnick, this is a self propelled vessel but can be restricted in its ability to manoeuvre, especially in strong winds and tides and vessels should keep clear.
  • Yacht racing takes part on Wednesday evenings and Saturday afternoons during the sailing season. The start line is off the Royal Fowey Yacht Club, this area and the harbour mouth can become congested during races and vessels transiting the area should give sailing boats a wide berth.
  • Swimming is not permitted in the harbour for safety reasons. A designated swimming area is buoyed off at Readymoney Cove in summer with a bathing platform.
Fowey Harbour Commissioners issue Harbour Masters Notices and Local Notices to Mariners which outline events, incidents and other matters affecting harbour safety.
Fowey Harbour Commissioners carry out an annual programme of surveys including bathymetric and side scan surveys in order to monitor the navigable depths within the harbour and to maintain the shipping channel for commercial shipping. The survey data is used to inform the dredging programme to ensure that dredging is efficient and effective.

Passage Plan

Fowey is a natural deep water harbour and entry into the harbour is straightforward by day or night and at all states of the tide.

The estuary above Wisemans Reach dries at low water and access should be with care, having consulted tide tables, charts and local knowledge.

On spring tides the tidal range is 5.5m although it may be as much as 6m at the equinoxes.  Neap tides have a 2m tidal range although both spring and neap ranges are considerably affected by wind conditions and barometric pressure.

The tidal flow will often be over 1 knot and nearing 2 knots on springs, this can be further increased following periods of heavy rainfall.