To submit a report by the Maritime and Country Parks Officer.
The Maritime and Country Parks Officer guided the members through the
report, drawing attention to the following main points:
That the Consultative
Committee was statutory and that the membership was in accordance with Section
6(2) (a-j) of the Porthmadog Harbour Revision Order.
A request had been received by Porthmadog Rowing Club
to have representation on the Consultative Committee. It was noted that it had
been explained to them that Dr John Jones-Morris represented leisure interests
on the Consultative Committee and matters could be referred to him to be
There were 135 boats on
annual moorings in Porthmadog Harbour in 2017
compared with 129 in 2016. It was encouraging to see a small increase in the
numbers this year.
That the Government's
Department for Transport had published modifications to the Ports' Safety Code
in November 2016. Copies of the new code had been circulated to all Members of
the Consultative Committee and copies could also be obtained on the Maritime
and Coastguard Agency’s website.
Between 19 and 21
September 2017, a thorough inspection was carried out by the Coastguard
Agency's auditors on the current safety arrangements and systems of Gwynedd
municipal harbours in order to ensure compliance with the Ports' Safety Code.
The initial opinion of the auditors was that the Council complied with the
requirements in general but that some aspects relating to recording duties and
noting the Duty Holder needed to be amended. The auditors visited the harbours
of Aberdyfi, Porthmadog and
Pwllheli during the audit. In regards to Porthmadog Harbour, the observations received were
excellent and no problems had become apparent. The Harbour Master and the
Senior Harbours Officer were thanked for their work in ensuring that the appropriate
documentation was in place.
A written report had
been received by the auditors on the day of the meeting outlining matters
requiring attention from the Council. It was explained that the Council had a
specific period to revise its arrangements and the Coastguard Agency would
revisit the service within 12 months of submitting the report when
recommendations submitted in the report would be expected to be actioned. It
was noted that copies of the report would be circulated to members.
Following a discussion
with the auditors, it was agreed in principle that it would be beneficial for
the date of the second visit to coincide with the date of the Harbour
Consultative Committee. It was suggested to the auditors that it could be
beneficial for the auditors to attend a meeting of the Porthmadog
Harbour Consultative Committee and invite representatives from the Consultative
Committees of Aberdyfi, Barmouth
and Pwllheli to the meeting in October 2018.
No observations had been
received relating to the Marine Safety Code since the previous meeting.
A detailed inspection
was conducted by Trinity House Lighthouse Authority inspectors on 2 August
2017. Compared with previous reports, the 2017 report confirmed a further
improvement in the condition and locations of Porthmadog
Harbour's Navigation Aids. A chart displaying the current locations of the
navigation aids was shared in the meeting.
One Mariners’ Notice
(Rh-15/2017) was in operation in Porthmadog Harbour.
The notice had been released as buoy number 8 was not in its correct station.
It was explained that the buoy had moved to the direction of Buoy number 6 and
it would be re-located at the first available opportunity.
Buoys number 1, number 3
and number 11 had been terminated. If needed, these buoys would be relocated in
the appropriate locations. It was noted that the service had informed Trinity
The employment period of
the Porthmadog Harbour Assistant (seasonal) had been
extended to the end of December 2017 in addition to the Harbour Assistants of Aberdyfi and Barmouth. Extending
the employment period would ensure support and continuation of the service
across the County over the winter months.
Thanks was given to the
Harbour staff for the quality of their work and their dedication to the service
which was praiseworthy.
The users of small boat
moorings in the area of Borth y Gest would be charged
a nominal fee from April 2018 onwards.
In order to meet with
the budget challenge and the service's income target, it was suggested to
increase Porthmadog harbour fees by 2% on average for
the 2018/19 financial year. It was emphasised that only a draft had been
submitted in the agenda, and that the fees were subject to receiving
confirmation from the Cabinet Member - Economic Development, and they would be
confirmed in the next meeting.
That there was now a
provision in the Harbour to pay with a card, which was a significant
improvement that facilitates payment arrangements for customers.
The Harbour Master provided details on the maintenance work programme and
members were asked to inform the service of any other work that should be
considered. The Leisure Interests Representative noted that the area of Pencei looked tidier and he shared his appreciation that
the Harbour Master had cut the grass. The Maritime and Country Parks Officer
noted that the Service was eager to assist Y Ganolfan
to maintain their green area.
The Leisure Interests Representative gave an update on the Madog Sailing
Club’s intention to submit an application to increase the number of pontoons in
the Harbour. It was noted that two estimates had recently been received to
realise the plan. It would be necessary to assess the need for the provision in
addition to how the plan would be funded. He confirmed that he would contact
the Maritime Service to confirm the situation.
In response to a question by a member in regards to the sea stairs, the
Maritime and Country Parks Officer noted that the stairs were made of slate and
that a handrail had been installed as many people had slipped on the stairs. He
added that they had been out of use since the installation of the pontoons and
that the public could gain access via the pontoons. He noted that there was no
lock on the gate, therefore there was no restriction to the public's use.
The Maritime and Country Parks Officer reported that the service had
undertaken a risk assessment in order to identify and reduce any risks relating
to driving and parking vehicles on lands abutting the Harbour Master's office.
He explained that due to the increase in the number of pedestrians walking from
the highway along the quay to the direction of the office, the service's
vehicles were not permitted to drive along this path. He noted that an alternative route had been
identified which would mean that access could be gained to the workshop along
the rear of Y Ganolfan building.
He added that access to the building would not be permitted except for
times when there would be a need to load or unload goods associated with the
harbour's work. No vehicles were permitted to park on the plot running parallel
with the Harbour Master's building.
Alternative parking areas were available to visitors either at Y Ganolfan or in the pay and display car park to the rear of
the harbour building.
The Leisure Interests Representative noted that he had no objection to
The Maritime and Country Parks Officer explained that the Property
Service were holding discussions with Y Ganolfan, and
that he would contact the Service to receive an update on the discussions.
A member noted that it should be possible for a matter to be referred
higher in the Department rather than having conflicts between Y Ganolfan and officers. In response, the Maritime and
Country Parks Officer noted that the communication between the Council and Y Ganolfan could have been better, but that he was hopeful
that it could be possible to reach an understanding that would be acceptable to
A copy of the final budget summary for 2016-17 and an update on the
2017-18 budget up to the end of September 2017 was shared in the meeting.
Attention was drawn to the fact that there was a deficiency against the target
income for 2016-17, but that there was an underspend
of £2,168 in the 2016-17 budget. The Maritime and Country Parks Officer noted
that he was proud of the staff's dedication who worked efficiently within the
scarce resources. The 2017-18 financial situation up to the end of September
2017 was referred to, and it was noted that the investment of a new boat for
the Harbour had been necessary in order to carry out the work and due to this,
an overspend was predicted for the financial year. It was noted that it would
be sought to fund the expenditure from funds and as a result the financial
situation would be better than the previous year.
In response to an enquiry from a member in regards to the Black Rock
Sands Beach budget, the Maritime and Country Parks Officer noted that the
beaches' budget was not within the remit of the Consultative Committee. He
noted that he would send the beaches' budgetary information to the members.
The Maritime and Country Parks Officer referred to the events held at Porthmadog Harbour during 2017, which included a Celtic
Longboats Race from Pwllheli to Porthmadog
and an RNLI activity day.
The Commercial Interests Representative noted that a Personal Watercraft
event had also been held which raised £4,237 for the Wales Air Ambulance
charity. He added that it was anticipated to hold the event again next year.
A member noted
that the Caru Port group had received funding from
TESCO to hold an event such as Fun at the Harbour as there was a local desire
to increase community use of the Harbour area. The Maritime and Country Parks
Officer noted that he welcomed discussions with the group.
The Senior Manager – Economy and Community Department highlighted that
Visit Wales were to conduct a year of the sea campaign in 2018, and most
activities would be held in Cardiff Bay but consideration was being given to
holding some community events and Porthmadog should
be kept in mind.
RESOLVED to note and accept the report.