Bideford Buzz

Welcome to the  on-line edition of the Community Newsletter for Bideford   and adjoining towns, villages, and rural area.

‘Bideford Buzz’ is produced  by a team of volunteers and relies on our local community for articles.   If you are interested in supporting this newsletter we’ll be glad to hear from you.

You can submit your article on disc or by e-mail.    However, ‘snail mail’ is equally acceptable. Material for publication should reach us during the month preceding the month of publication.

Editor – Rose Arno (Bideford Buzz),    c/o Torridge Volunteer Resource Centre (‘TVS’),  14, Bridgeland Street, Bideford, EX39 2QE.  (TVS opening hours Mon.-Thurs. 9.30am to 3.oopm [12.30pm on Thurs.]).      Telephone 07929-976120, or E-mail: editor@bidefordbuzz.org.uk

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Patch’s petfood Bank.

Emma Osborne, the founder, had noticed that much was being done to help children and struggling families but nothing was being done to support low or no income families with their pets. She posted to a range of local Facebook groups asking for people’s thoughts and opinions; the response was overwhelmingly positive and donations started to come in.

Patch’s Pet Food was set up in October 2020, with the aim of helping those in need to feed their pets during this crisis and beyond, hopefully helping to take the strain and worry from people and also the need for them to re-home their pets.

Emma named the food bank in honour of her loyal Labrador cross who sadly had passed away in November 2018, so that his loving memory lives on.

They supply people with 2 weeks supply of food for a large number of pets including but not limited to dogs, puppies, cats, kittens, rabbits, mice, hamsters, rats, gerbils, and guinea pigs.

We are currently helping to support 35 cats, 14 dogs, 2 rabbits, 2 Guinea pigs and some rats, this number is growing week on week, proving the need for support and help in this area.

We are also at South Molton Community Fridge and Kitchen at the YMCA in South Molton on alternative Mondays, where we drop off food parcels for people requesting help so they can collect and also have a few pet food bags made up to help anyone that should pop in.

We have Donation boxes set up at various locations around North Devon to help us collect Food as well as a range of pet items such as bedding, cages, bowls leads etc if anyone is in need.

We have developed a positive working relationship with Cat Protection in both Barnstaple and Holsworthy Areas, K9Focus and the Bluecross in Bickleigh.

Most of our pet food donations come from the public as well as list https://www.amazon.co.uk/hz/wishlist/ls/3DLB9NUE4V205?ref_=wl_shar people can make donations which come directly, saving people having to travel during the lockdowns.

We have a gofundme page set up by a volunteer to help us with donations. https://gofund.me/d4cfe399

We are currently looking for donations to help us raise enough money to obtain a storage container to store our ever-growing pet food supplies; we currently have a room in the back of Del Boy’s Ilfracombe, who have been amazing and so helpful and also some space in a garage, but we are rapidly running out of room. If anyone can help us with one free or at a significantly reduced rate we would be very grateful.

And lastly we are looking for local support from businesses and local funding groups that can help us with funding, volunteers to help with fundraising and collections and deliveries.

If anyone you know is in need of help please contact us on their behalf, so we can help reach as many people as possible, please contact us on our facebook page

https://www.facebook.com/PatchsPetFoodBank

or via email patchspetfoodbank@gmail.com

or our website www.patchspetfoodbank.co.uk

Here are a couple of quotes from supporters –

Ioni Drake

Patch’s pet food bank provided a lifeline. In a world where things are so upside down, and so much human kindness surfacing it is reassuring to know the companions of many are thought of too! It is devastating that many have lost their jobs, funding or aid. In this many have had to face the harsh reality of not being able to feed their furry family adequately or at all. This is just another unnecessary and avoidable issue to deal with in the pandemic. Pets aren’t just pets. They are a furry family, and companions. In isolation the ability to have a companion, something to care for, have responsibility for, and indeed a routine has been a life saver for many. Our beasts have kept us sane, allowed us outside walks, and combated loneliness. This wonderful charity has not only helped humans keep and feed and support their pets, it’s also stopped many pets being surrendered, and having to heartbreakingly leave their homes and environments and humans for the unfamiliar. These wonderful people have spent time not only providing for our pets but time engaging in a distanced chat on the doorstep, or a conversation through a message. The service and those who run it are truly invaluable, and it should not be like this in this day in age, but thank goodness there are folks like this when and where they are needed. A gratitude is owed to them for thinking of providing such an amazing service x

Michelle Clarke-Watkin

I offered some spare cat food recently. I had a speedy response from Patch’s and it was collected promptly by a very friendly chap who made a big fuss of my puppy. This is a great initiative to help those who are in need.

COLLECTION BOX LOCATIONS.

Barnstaple

Market Veterinary Centre, Riverside Road Pottington EX31 1QN

9, Charles Dart Crescent, EX32 7EB*

Bideford

30 Fillablack Road.

Braunton

Tops ’n’ Tails, 19, Cross Tree Centre, Caen Street, EX33 1AA.

Holsworthy

Holsworthy Pets, 4 Victoria Square, EX22 6AA.

Ilfracombe

DelBoy’s, 149 High St, EX34 9NH.

IlfraGroom, 3 Marlborough Rd, EX34 8JJ.

Melian Pet Supplies, Buzzard Crt, Mullacott X Ind. Est, EX34 8PX.

Melian Pet Supplies, 121 High St, EX34 9EY

9, Greenways, EX34 8DT (Buzz to access Box).

Instow

1 Marine Parade, EX39 4HZ*

Shebbear

Dipper Mill Cottage, Shebbear, EX21 5TA*

South Molton

Market Veterinary Centre, Southley Road, EX36 4BL.

Torrington

22, Hunterswood, EX38 7NX*

Whiskers Pet Centre 20 South Street EX38 8AA.

Westward Ho!

Sweeps Pet Shop, 22 Nelson Rd, EX39 1LQ.

*These are Private Addresses: Please leave the items in the boxes.

Please do not disturb the Box hosts.

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Virtual Balloon Race, 4th April.

 

http://brauntoncaenrotary.co.uk/balloonrace

admin@brauntoncaenrotary.co.uk

Are you looking for a bit of fun this Easter that the whole family can enjoy? In April, North Devon Rotary Clubs are giving you the opportunity to set to the skies by taking part in an eco-friendly and safe Virtual Balloon Race in aid of North Devon Hospice.

North Devon Hospice is much loved and respected doing an incredible job. The Virtual Balloon Race give us an opportunity to raise funds in a safe and fun way. In these particularly challenging times, every balloon purchased really will help the Hospice to continue to offer care and support to local people who are affected by a life-limiting illness.

Mike Phillips, Managing Director of Ecoracing.co, explained: “The race uses real weather conditions to determine the progress of each balloon and each entry can be tracked on Google Maps and Satellites once launched. It has no negative environmental impact on wildlife, climate change, plastic waste or litter.”

He continued: “You can buy a virtual balloon for £3 and give it a name, colour, shape, and pattern. Also you can select different features of your balloon, such as weight, which will determine its flight performance in order to enhance your chances of winning.” He added, “It’s a fun and easy way to raise funds for a cause, which kids and adults alike love”.

Jess Burford, from North Devon Hospice’s fundraising team, said: “We love this idea! The balloon race is a great way to have a bit of fun whilst helping local families. Our nurses are doing an amazing job, supporting patients so that they can stay in the comfort of their own homes or on our bedded unit. This kind of care can only continue because of the North Devon community raising vital funds. We are so grateful to Braunton Caen Rotary for setting up this balloon race and I hope that you will be inspired to buy a balloon today.”

The Race starts from Jerusalem on Easter Sunday and will finish seven days later. The first prize for the balloon that travels the farthest is £500, second prize an iPad and 10 book tokens worth £10 each.

Why not buy a team of balloons for your family for a bit of Easter fun?

How far will your balloon travel? Don’t delay, get yours today!

To get your balloon, or find out more, go to https://brauntoncaenrotary.co.uk/balloonrace

The participating Rotary Clubs are:

Barnstaple Rotary.

Barnstaple Link Rotary.

Bideford Bridge Rotary.

Braunton Caen Rotary.

Holsworthy Rotary.

Ilfracombe Rotary.

Rotary e-Club South West Peninsula.

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Devon Carers – caring for carers.

If you look after someone, who looks after you?

Since COVID-19, the number of unpaid carers in Devon has increased by almost 50% to approximately 130,000 (source: Devon County Council). It has never been more important to identify and support carers than now. Devon Carers are passionate about helping those who support others.

A carer is someone who provides unpaid support to family, friends or neighbours who could not manage without their help on a regular basis. Anyone can become a carer at any time. It may happen gradually as a person’s health deteriorates or instantly, as a result of an accident or unexpected health condition. Quite often a person does not recognise themselves as a carer, even though they have a caring responsibility. No matter who a person is caring for and whether they have the same condition as somebody else, their situation is unique to them.

Devon Carers is an organisation who support unpaid carers to maintain their own health, wellbeing and independence to care safely, confidently and effectively. The service has been commissioned jointly by Devon County Council and NHS Devon Clinical Commissioning Group. They provide a range of services to over 20,000 carers across Devon, excluding Plymouth and Torbay. These include:-

Website – an excellent information resource https://devoncarers.org.uk/ 

Quarterly magazine – with the latest news, carer stories and training courses. 

Helpline and webchat – available Mon-Fri 8am-6pm: Sat 9am-1pm. Call 03456 434 435. 

Alert Card – to alert others if they become unexpectedly ill or taken to hospital that they are unable to care for their loved ones and to summon help for them. 

Training – opportunities to learn skills to assist with their caring role.

Peer Support – connecting carers to mutually support each other.

Emergency Plan – a record containing important and useful information to help others if a carer is unexpectedly unable to carry out their caring role.

Hospital services – additional support following a stay in hospital.

Carer assessments – a personalised assessment of how caring affects your health and wellbeing and how we can support you with one-to-one assistance if required. They treat each carer as an individual, taking time to find out what’s important to them, and work out together how they can support them in their caring role. The challenges carers face in different parts of the county can vary greatly, so having local teams enables them to provide specific advice and support. The teams also liaise closely with health and social care services and have strong links with voluntary and community organisations. 

If you think you are an unpaid carer, or know someone who is, please get in touch with Devon Carers to find out more: https://devoncarers.org.uk/ or 03456 434 435.

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First phase of Westward Ho! sea defences completed.

The first phase of enhanced sea defences at Westward Ho! has been completed with the placement of around 2,000 tonnes of locally-sourced rock armour from Brookland Sand and Aggregates. The energy dissipating structure is the first phase of a complete programme of linear defences for the region, funded by the Environment Agency, and was brought forward because of previous storm damage and flooding experienced in the autumn last year.

With rocks weighing 6-10 tonnes each and flat-bed lorry capacity limited to around 3 boulders at a time the logistics of moving such a large amount of material in a short space of time were complex. Once on site the boulders were moved to their final location in 25 tonne dumper trucks and craned into position. The front face of the rock armour was then covered by pebbles to reduce the visual impact and the impact of the structure on natural beach processes.

Atkins and Kier, who were the main contractors for the build, supported by local sub-contractor SEL Clarke of Bideford, were able to engineer the whole structure with 500 tonnes less material than originally anticipated, which resulted in cost savings in both materials and plant hire. All the contractors along with Torridge Council’s engineering team worked hard over the Christmas period to complete the works in as short a time as possible, and with the intention of minimising any disruption to residents and businesses.

The structure is already doing its job and came through unscathed from the most recent storm surges, which saw 13ft waves battering the North Devon coast. While there was some debris to be cleared following the event the main structure stood up to some of the highest waves the area has seen in recent years.

The Council’s Engineering team will continue to work on the remaining tasks, such as anchoring the land side legato block over the next few months and to tidy up the work area and surrounding site with the help of Northam Burrows Rangers. The Council’s expectation is to have everything ready for what is likely to be a busy summer for the visitors and local businesses. Further sea defence enhancements are also planned for the area as part of multi-million-pound regional schemes being funded by the Environment Agency.

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Exmoor Pony Centre – February.

News from the Exmoor Pony Centre, Ashwick, Dulverton, TA22 9QE

Well, here we are in Lockdown 3, not that the ponies have a clue what is going on! The staff are all working at the centre handling the foals, exercising the up-and-coming trekking team and planning new ways to generate income in these difficult times. Usually, we would open to the public at February half term, but due to the current situation unfortunately we will not be open before April.

Three ponies, Jack, Bodie, and Doyle, have ventured to foster homes over the Christmas and New Year period. All have settled into their new surroundings and are enjoying being loved by their fosterers. Our friends and supporters are always curious to know what our naming theme is for the foals each year. This time we have decided to go with names of characters from ‘The Muppets’. Currently we have Gonzo, Kermit, Scooter, Fozzie, Bert, Ernie and Elmo.

With the recent cold snap we were very grateful for our supply of hay to keep the ponies happy and filled up. A massive thank you to all those who donated to our Hay Appeal through the ‘Big Give’ early in December – the ponies were very appreciative.

Do you have an area of 3 acres or more which needs grazing? We are looking for local places where our ponies can graze. They are not fussy eaters and are quite happy on rough or slopy areas as long as there is a good fence to keep them safe. Any offers would be most welcome, even if only for just a short while, to help us get through the next few months. If you think you have anything suitable, please get in touch.

Our online shop is fully stocked with warm clothing for these chilly times – why not take a look at our range of fleeces and hoodies. If you still haven’t got your calendar for 2021 ours are now on sale at £4.50 (down from £7.50), lots of beautiful pictures of Exmoor ponies.

Very best wishes to all our friends and supporters, please stay safe and in contact with us via our social media platforms, as we want to stay engaged with our followers during these tricky times.

Website: www.exmoorponycentre.org.uk

Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheExmoorPonyCentre


Email:
info@exmoorponycentre.org.uk


Tel: 01398 323093.

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Shipping notes No. 190 (January).

Bideford Quay.

I start off this month with very sad news that Michael Pryer, aged 77, the port crane operator for T.D.C., died of a heart attack at January 8th. He had worked as crane driver since I moved to North Devon in February 2002. He was very approachable, would answer any questions regarding loading of the ships, and was liked by everybody concerned with the port. He will be sadly missed by everybody. His funeral took place at Fremington Church on the 28th. Rest in Peace Michael.

The Oldenburg returned from her annual drydocking at Sharpness on January 14th. She will be making cargo rurns prior to her normal season, which will depend on the Covid 19 situation.

No shipping at Bideford.

Appledore.

On the 6th the Trinity House buoy vessel Mair called overnight and sailed the following morning. No news of any orders for the yard.

Yelland Quay.

No shipping since last edition.

Bristol Channel Observations.

2/1 at 06.14 Peak Breskens, 3,931 tons d.w., owners Peak Bresken BV Norway, outward outward bound from Sharpness having sailed at 20.45 1st . At 10.33 bitumen tanker Iver Brilliant, owners Vroon BV Netherland, inward bound for Newport. At 11.09 bulk carrier Aastun, 6,100 tons d.w., owners Aasnes Bulk As Norway. At 12.00 cargo vessel Hermas, 4,903 tons d.w., owners Hermas Herman Lohmann Germany, inward bound for Sharpness. At 13.35 vehicle carrier Neptune Galene, 6,670 tons d.w., owners Aegli Shipping Greece, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 08.25.

5/1 at 05.15 hrs cargo vessel Amber Trader, 5,727 tons d.w., owners A. Trader Ltd Portugal, inward bound for Swansea. At 16.48 cargo vessel Astid, 3,850 tons d.w., owners Irving Management Ltd Lithuania, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 11.50.

6/1 at 06.29 cargo vessel Paulin-B, 2,300 tons d.w., owners Lily-B Schiffahrts Germany, outward bound from Sharpness having sailed at 22.51. At 10.31 cargo vessel Navis 4, 6,328 tons d.w., inward bound for Newport. (She is a Russian river craft far away from home – in fact she is 51 years old, and has only been photographed 6 times on ‘Marine Traffic’).

8/1 at 17.38 cargo vessel Fri Dolphin, 3,027 tons d.w., owners Kopervik Shipping AS Norway, inward bound for Sharpness. At 17.38 vehicle carrier Hoegh Trotter, 76,420 tons d.w., owners Hoegh Autoliners Shipping A/s Norway, inward bound for Portbury.

9/1 at 06.08 cargo vessel Arklow Valour, 5,159 tons d.w., owners Avoca Shipping BV Netherlands, outward bound from Avonmouth having sailed at 23.41 8th.

10/1 at 17.00 cargo vessel Feed Rogaland, 4,993 tons d.w., owners Halten Bulk A/S Norway, inward bound for Sharpness.

13/1 at 11.50 vehicle carrier Grande Halifax, 18,353 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury. (Also seen again 14th at 10.40, having sailed at 0531).

14/1 at 10.55 vehicle carrier Gravity Highway, 58,767 tons d.w., owners Ray Car Carrier Israel, inward bound for Portbury.

15/1 at 11.05 cargo vessel Gulf Sky, 3,432 tons d.w., owners Gulf Sky Ltd Turkey, inward bound for Newport.

16/1 at 13.08 vehicle carrier Autopride, 4,442tons d.w., owners United European Car Carrier, inbound for Portbury. At 13.27 cargo vessel Maria Elise, 6,050 tons d.w., owners Angela HS Schiffahrts Germany, outward bound from Barry having sailed 09.04.

17/1 at 14.30 container vessel MSC Asli, 14,150 tons d.w., owners NSM Asli Shipping Ltd, inward bound for Portbury.

22/1 at 08.15 container vessel Enforcer, 9,450 tons d.w. owners Enforcer Bewaarder BV Netherlands, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 14.27 20th. At 15.35 bulk carrier Pretty Victory, 35,299 tons d.w., owners Pretty Victory Shipping SA Hong Kong, inward bound for Portbury.

23/1 at 17.46 vehicle carrier Hoegh Seoul, 76,420 tons d.w., owners Hoegh Autoliners Shipping A/S Norway, inward bound for Portbury.

24/1 at 07.30 cargo vessel Kati, 4,953 tons d.w., owners HS Kati Ou Estonia, inward bound for Swansea. At 11.17 cargo vessel Wilson Ruhr, 1,531 tons d.w., owners Wilson Shipowning AS Norway.

25/1 at 09.10 cargo vessel Wilma, 4,953 tons d.w., owners HS Kati OU Estonia, inward bound for Newport. At 1700 cargo vessel Arlecchino, 2,503 tons d.w., owners Caribbean Shipping Ltd Lithuania, inward bound for Neath.

26/1 at 08.40 cargo vessel Peak Belfast, 3,931 tons d.w., owners Peak Belfast BV Denmark, inward bound for Avonmouth. At 0940 vehicle carrier Vega Leader, 16,396 tons d.w., owners Aries Del Mar Compania SA Japan, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 05.39. At 10.5 cargo vessel Theseus, 2,500 tons d.w., owners Sunship Eurocoaster Germany, inward bound for Newport.

30/1 at 07.05 cargo vessel Anmi, 4,245 tons d.w., owners Misje Bulk AS Norway, inward bound for Avonmoth. At 07.37 cargo vessel Eems Sun, 2,605 tons d.w., owners Sun BV Netherlands, inward bound for Avonmouth. At 10.50 vehicle carrier Grande Torino, 15,853 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury. At 11.00 cargo vessel Lady Alida, 3,700 tons d.w., owners Lady Alida BV Netherlands, outward bound from Swansea having sailed at 07.04.

31/1 at 05.55 cargo vessel Celtic Raider, 4,537 tons d.w., owners Charles M Willie Shipping Cardiff. At 06.23 cargo vessel Patrick, 4,495 tons d.w., owners Patrick Herman Lohmann Germany, outward bound from Avonmouth having sailed at 21.59 30th. At 15.35 container vessel Akacia, 13,713 tons d.w., owners Akacia Schiffahrts Germany, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 11.29.

Below – an old photograph from my collection, of the “Kingba” under arrest in 1977.

In my report for November I mentioned that the cruise ship Marco Polo was proceeding to Dubai to be used as an accommodation vessel. This idea fell through, and the vessel sailed to the breakers yard at Alang, India, where she arrived on the 9th January 2021and was beached on the 13th – a sad end to a well designed vessel.

Regards,

Norman Hardaker.

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Extensive refurbishment underway at Burrows Centre.

The new year has brought new activity on Northam Burrows as work begins on the complete refurbishment of the old Visitor Centre and installation of a new café alongside the original building. The 14-week project is being undertaken by Pearce Construction who have been awarded a Considerate Constructor’s Certificate for their operations and work.

The most obvious and striking progress to date has been the removal of the existing roof alongside the removal of turf in front of the centre as work commenced on the levelling of the area where the modular café building will be installed. The very first job was to cut and roll the turf and move it to a temporary location where it will continue to grow until the building works are finished. The original turf will then be reinstated to continue growing around the centre once more at the end of the project.

In line with the environmentally friendly approach to the build as many materials as possible are being recycled. The salvaged materials include roof slates, LED strip lights, hand dryers, emergency lights, a hearing loop machine, a baby change table and a selection of sockets and network points. Many of these items will be reused for replacements and repairs on other Council properties.

As well as reinsulating the old centre to bring it up to modern standards the interior layout will also be updated. An important part of this is the addition of a fully accessible “Changing Places” room which will provide the enhanced space and equipment for people who cannot use standard toilet facilities and another much needed specialist facility for visitors to the Burrows. The changed layout will also allow for a separate teaching area alongside the main exhibition space which will be available to the many school groups that visit for environmental education sessions with the park rangers.

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Council seeks renting partnership with private landlords.

Torridge District Council is calling on private landlords with accommodation for rent in Bideford to come forward to discuss long term leases for their properties. The request is part of the Council’s push to find a more ready supply of housing for when people find themselves temporarily homeless or in need of housing assistance.

Homelessness can occur for numerous reasons: family breakdown, sudden change in financial circumstance, etc, and people often turn to the Council for short term help and assistance. The shortage of readily available affordable accommodation across the district often means that people have to be housed in inappropriate and expensive bed and breakfast or hotel accommodation, during the period in which they need the Council’s help.

Torridge Council is proactively seeking landlords with available properties that it can lease on a 2-4 year basis that can be used to temporarily house people. Properties must be of a good standard with low maintenance and the Council are particularly interested in 1 bedroom and larger 4-5-bedroom homes. In return the Council can offer a secured direct income for landlords and over a longer period than shorter term lets normally afford.

Councillor Michael Clarke, Lead Member for Homelessness and Housing Need in Torridge, said: “Anyone might find themselves in a sudden homeless situation during their lives and while not always the case, maybe in need of the Council’s help to get them back on their feet. Having a list of readily available and suitable properties we can use to house people will be of huge benefit to everyone involved. We hope Landlords will rally to this call for available properties and get in touch with our officers to discuss becoming involved in the project. The upside to all of this will hopefully be to everybody’s advantage.”

Any property owners who would like to explore these proposals further are asked to contact Helen Page on 01237 428843 or email housing.options@torridge.gov.uk

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Shipping notes No. 189 (December).

Bideford Quay.

No shipping since last edition.

Appledore.

No news regarding orders for the yard.

Yelland quay.

No shipping since last edition.

Bristol Channel Observations.

1/12 at 08.25 self-discharging bulk carrier Yeoman Bank, 38,997 tons d.w., owners Aggregate Industries Ltd U.K., inward bound for Portbury. At 11.32 tanker Sten Suomi, 16,470 tons d.w., owners Stenship Norway, outward bound from Cardiff having sailed at 06.26. At 15.50 cargo vessel RMS Saimaa, 2,634 tons d.w., owners RMS Schiffinvest GMBH & Co KG Germany, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 09.50.

2/12 at 06.46 vehicle carrier Grande Roma, 14,900 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury.

3/12 at 15.30 cargo vessel Doggersbank, 6,000 tons d.w., owners Doggership BV Netherlands, inward bound for Swansea.

4/12 at 06.56 cargo vessel Claire, 4,450 tons d.w., owners Claire BV Netherlands, inward bound for Sharpness. At 11.20 bulk carrier Aasfjord, 3,960 tons d.w., owners Aasen Bulk A/S Norway, outward bound from Port Talbot having sailed at 07.38. At 14.10 cargo vessel Mia Sophie-B, 2,300 tons d.w., owners Sophie-B Schiffahrts GMBH & Co Germany, outward bound from Port Talbot having sailed at 09.01.

5/12 at 07.26 cargo vessel Fracht Sund, owners unknown, inward bound for Sharpness. At 10.50 tanker Rystraum, 9,597 tons d.w., owners Utkilon Chemtrans AS Norway, inward bound for Barry. At 17.00 cargo vessel Robijn, 3,619 tons d.w., owners Van Donderen 667Netherlands, inward bound for Avonmouth.

6/12 at 11.07 cargo vessel RMS Laar, 2,304 tons d.w., owners Laar Shipping SA Greece, outward bound from Sharpness at 21.01 3rd – she had in the meantime been anchored in Swansea Bay. At 14.55 vehicle carrier Neptune Galene, 6,580 tons d.w., owners Aegli Shipping Greece, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again at 06.39 8th outward bound having sailed at 21.02 7th).

8/12 at 07.00 vehicle carrier Coral Leader, 12,164 tons d.w., owners Kujyukuri Maritima SA Norway, inward bound for Portbury.

9/12 at 16.15 tanker Sten Idun, 16,613 tons d.w., owners Stenoil K/s Norway, inward bound for Avonmouth.

10/12 at 07.45 cargo vessel Blue H, 6,063 tons d.w., owners Ruzvelt Shipping Ltd Turkey, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 00.58. At 08.23 vehicle carrier Brazilia Highway, 18,793 tons d.w., owners Kawasaki Kisen K.K. Japan, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again at 05.35 outward bound having sailed from Portbury at 00.52). At 08.35 vehicle carrier Figaro, 31,143 tons d.w., owners Wallenius Wilhelmsen Norway and Sweden, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 04.56. At 16.45 vehicle carrier Selene Leader, 18,082 tons d.w., owners Nippon Yusen Kaisha Japan, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again outward bound at 16.35 12th, having sailed from Portbury at 13.23 11th – she had been anchored off the Welsh Coast with possible engine problems).

12/12 at 05.30 bulk carrier Crimson Kingdom, 84,860 tons d.w., owners MMSL Pte Ltd Singapore, outward bound from Port Talbot having sailed at 01.45. At 07.53 cargo vessel Amber Trader, 5,727 tons d.w., owners A.Trader Ltd Portugal, inward bound for Swansea. (Seen again 14th outward bound from Swansea having sailed at 04.02). At 15.01 cargo vessel Celtic Raider, 4,537 tons d.w., owners Charles M Willie & Co Cardiff, inward bound for Cardiff.

13/12 at 0700 the bulk carrier Mitose, 77,376 tons d.w., was reporting off the Cornish Coast that she was proceeding to Appledore, which is impossible; at 14.30 she arrived in Bideford Bay. She sailed on the 14th, but returned in the early hours of the 15th via the Northern Point of Lundy Island She eventually sailed am 17th for Rotterdam. Various suggestions were made that she had engine problems, but this was never confirmed.

14/12 at 15.05 cargo vessel Arklow Raider, 4,953 tons d.w., owners Invermore Shipping Ltd Ireland, inward bound for Sharpness.

15/12 at 13.25 container vessel AS Paulina, 34,287 tons d.w., owners AS Paulina Opco BV Netherlands, outward bound from Port Talbot having sailed at 09.19.

17/12 at 11.05 cargo vessel Kristin, 4,139 tons d.w., owners Kristin Schiffahrts Germany, inward bound for Avonmouth.

19/1 at 08.55 cargo vessel Arklow Flair, 4,950 tons d.w., owners Invermore Shipping Ltd Ireland, inward bound for Avonmouth. At 10.00 cargo vessel Wilson Wisla, 2,517 tons d.w., owners Wilson Shipowning A/S Norway, inward bound for Sharpness. (Seen again at 14.45 on the 29th having sailed from Sharpness at 06.35). At 12.15 bulk carrier Aastun, 6,100 tons d.w., owners Aasen Bulk Norway, outward bound from Port Talbot having sailed at 08.14. At 14.10 cargo vessel Hermas, 4,903 tons d.w., owners Hermas Herman Lohmann Germany, inward bound for Sharpness.

20/12 at 06.15 vehicle carrier Grande Spagne, 12,594 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 01.03. At 10.27 buoy tender vessel Galatea, owners Trinity House Harwich, outward bound from Coombe Martin bound for Falmouth. At 14.44 vehicle carrier Cronus Leader, 20,096 tons d.w., owners Nippon Yusen Kaisha Japan, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 13.42 19th. At 15.22 container vessel Elbspirit, 42,594 tons d.w., owners Elbspirit GMBH & Co KG Germany, inward bound. At 16.17 hrs vehicle carrier Glovis Caravel, 20,434 tons d.w., owners Ray Car Carriers Israel, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 12.02.

22/12 at 17.24 cargo vessel Wilson Amsterdam, 3,602 tons d.w., owners Edison Schiffahrts KG Germany, inward bound for Swansea.

23/12 at16.15 vehicle carrier Morning Concert, 21,500 tons d.w., owners Wilhelmsen Ship Management Norway, inward bound for Portbury. At 16.35 vehicle carrier Passero, 12,755 tons d.w., owners Passero GMBH & Co KF Germany, inward bound for Portbury.

24/12 at 06.05 tanker Bro Nyborg, 16,564 tons d.w., owners Brostrom AB Denmark, inward bound for Cardiff. At 09.42 cargo vessel Truffaldino, 2,953 tons d.w., owners Waterway Shipping Lithuania, outward bound from Sharpness having sailed at 00.48.

25/12 at 09.00 cargo vessel Amadeus Silver, 2,570 tons d.w., owners Amadeus Silver BV Netherlands, inward bound for Sharpness.

26/12 at 10.30 cargo vessel RMS Saimaa, 2,634 tons d.w., owners RMS Schiffinvest GMBH & Co KG Germany, inward bound for Newport.

28/12 at 07.20 vehicle carrier Auto Star, 6,670 tons d.w., owners United European Car Carrier Norway, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 02.37.

29/12 at 10.00 vehicle carrier Grand Venus, 13,500 tons d.w., owners Cido Shipping (H.K) Co Ltd Hong Kong, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 18.10 28th. At 21.55 cargo vessel Arlecchino, 2,503 tons d.w., owners Caribbean Shipping Ltd Lithuania, inward bound for Neath .

30/12 at 05.17 cargo vessel Catania, 2,595 tons d.w., owners Catania Fehn Schiffahrts Germany, outward bound from Avonmouth having sailed at 20.31 29th. At 14.55 vehicle carrier Euphrates Highway, 18,668 tons d.w., owners Kawasaki Kisen K.K. Japan, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 10.14.

31/12 at 14.34 bulk carrier Aasvik, 4,319 tons d.w., owners Aasen Bulk A/S Norway, inward bound for Swansea. At 15.05 vehicle carrier Neptune Galene, 6,580 tons d.w., owners Aegli Shipping Greece, inward bound for Portbury.

Explanation to you all; you may have noticed a number of ships ‘seen’ in the hours of darkness. I see their navigation lights and consult with the computer Marine Traffic (AIS) equipment.

All the best for 2021, and I trust that it is better than 2020.

Regards,

Norman.

Below, a photograph from my collection – Zita, largest vessel loaded at Bideford in terms of d.w.

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Northam Burrows Visitor Centre – steps towards renewal.

New designs for the exciting new Northam Burrows Visitor Centre have been given the green light by plans committee following a unanimous decision to approve the latest design drawings for the centre. The plans mirror a revised approach to the build which will see the modular sections for the new café built off-site, as covid-19 cast a shadow over the timescales for the previous plans. The modifications mean that the centre can be delivered in time for its planned opening in June 2021 without jeopardising the time-limited grant funding for the scheme.

The new facility will be a focal point within the 254-hectare Country Park and will sit within a designated AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty), UNESCO Biosphere and designated SSSI (site of special scientific interest). The project will transform the existing building, which has stood largely unchanged since it was built in 1984. The interior will boast enhanced exhibition spaces, a multi-purpose education room and an accessible changing places facility as well as a small shop and offices for the rangers. The new café will sit to one side of the complex with panoramic views, outdoor decking and seating as well as an all-important food and beverage outlet, which the old building wasn’t able to accommodate. Additional toilet facilities will also be incorporated into the unit.

The project has already been funded by a £1.2M grant of Coastal Communities funding and as well as improved educational facilities will create new job opportunities at the complex as well. The wooden cladding, non-reflective roofing and other materials have all been chosen to minimise the impact of the building within the sensitive natural landscape. It’ll also be bursting with energy efficiency upgrades, which will reduce the environmental impact compared to the older and now less efficient structure.

The next steps will involve a decommissioning of the existing offices and ancillary spaces with building work due to commence on the site in early January. The new designs were supported by the AONB and Natural England with the officer report noting the AONB welcoming the “enhancement the centre will bring to the visitor experience”.

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Shipping notes No. 188 (November).

In port – Bideford Quay.

RMS Carelie – built 1993; (ex- Panta Rei, 2008; Talos, ’06; Jason, ’00); flag Mairenhamm, Finland; owners Finnish; crew Estonian & Philippino; from Belfast to Naantali; arrived 7/11, sailed 12/11; loaded 2,300 tons ball clay.

The Oldenburg left Bideford at 23.47 22nd for her annual drydocking at Sharpness.

Appledore.

The work boat Sarah Grey arrived on 12th with the barge Mormaen 15 in tow and berthed at Harland and Wolff berth Appledore, sheltering from the weather in the channel. They sailed at 22.42 21st , for Falmouth.

No news of any firm orders for the yard. MP Mr Cox thinks the government review on defence spending will mean orders for smaller vessels.

Bristol Channel Observations.

1/11 at 13.25 vehicle carrier Hoegh Tracer, 28,538 tons d.w., owners Hoegh Autoliners Norway, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again outward bound at 11.57 3rd having sailed from Portbury at 05.40).

3/11 at 12.16 tanker Stolt Osprey, 5,846 tons d.w., owners Sea 142 Leasing Co Ltd Netherlands, outward bound from Barry having sailed at 08.54. At 12.12 cargo vessel Arklow Rebel, 4,933 tons d.w., owners Arklow Shipping ULC Eire, outward bound from Swansea having sailed at 08.54. At 12.19 cargo vessel Hurst Point, 13,274 tons d.w. owners Ministry of Defence operated by Foreland Shipping Ltd London, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 08.02. At 12.22 vehicle carrier Grande Miraflores, 15,853 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury. At 13.35 cargo vessel Rova Stones, 3,850 tons d.w., owners Rova Shipping GMBH & Co KG Germany, inward bound for Cardiff.

4/11 at 1320 vehicle carrier Autosun, 6,670 tons d.w., owners United European Car Carriers Norway, inward bound for Portbury.

5/11 at 14.03 vehicle carrier Neptune Dynamis, 6,850 tons d.w., owners Dynamis Shipping Co Ltd Greece, inward bound for Portbury.

6/11 at 15.00 cargo vessel Ventura, 5,699 tons d.w., owners Ventura Edwin Strahlmann GMBH Germany, outward bound from Sharpness.

7/11 at 16.18 vehicle carrier Grande Portogallo, 12,594 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury.

8.11 at 01.31 vehicle carrier Grand Benelux, 12,594 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury. At 13.55 vehicle carrier Neptune Galene, 6,670 tons d.w., owners Aegli Shipping Ltd Greece, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 08.39.

9/11 at 11.14 vehicle carrier Vega Leader, 16,396 tons d.w., owners Aires Del Mar Compania SA Japan, inward bound for Portbury. (Seen again at 08.33 11th having sailed from Portbury at 03.58). At 15.55 bulk carrier Aasvik, 7,566 tons d.w., owners A/S Aasen Bulk Norway, outward bound from Port Talbot having sailed at 12.19. At 17.14 vehicle carrier Toreador, 22,098 tons d.w., owners Wallenius Wilhelmsen Sweden and Norway, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 12.34.

10/11 at 08.51 ro-ro vessel City of Hamburg, 3,546 tons d.w., owners Airbus France, having sailed from Portbury at 03.57. At 14.59 cargo vessel Verena, 3,850 tons d.w., owners Verena Hermann Lohmann Germany, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 22.28 9th.

12/11 at 08.05 cargo vessel Beaumagic, 3,817 tons d.w., owners Unisea Shipping B.v., inward bound for Newport .

13/11 at 06.50 cargo vessel Magdalena, 4,247 tons d.w., owners Ilze Shipping Co Ltd Latvia, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 05.10 12th. At 10.47 cargo vessel Adiante, 4,672 tons d.w., owners Sudersand Germany, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 04.08.

14/11 at 06.40 cargo vessel Bonay, 1,891 tons d.w., owners Courland Shipping SIA Latvia, inward bound for Sharpness. At 10.35 cargo vessel Valeri, 4,450 tons d.w., owners Valerie BV Netherlands, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 04.17.

15/11 at 09.55 bulk carrier Aasvik, 7,560 tons d.w., owners A/S Aasen Bulk Norway, outward bound from Port Talbot having sailed at 05.36.

19/11 at 15.37 vehicle carrier Autosun, 6,670 tons d.w., owners United European Car Carriers Norway, inward bound for Portbury. At 15.54 cargo vessel Lingedijk, 4,891 tons d.w., owners Lingedijk BV Netherlands, outward bound from Birdport having sailed at 09.13.

20/11 at 05.57 cruise vessel Marco Polo, 5,180 gross tons, owners Story Cruise Ltd Monaco, outward bound from Avonmouth having sailed at 22.18 19th en route to Falmouth for bunkers – she was only doing 6 knots. (She subsequently left Falmouth pm 22nd destination Dubai Anchorage. She has been sold by auction for $2.77 million to be used in Dubai, UAE as an accommodation vessel). At 05.58 cargo vessel Brufjell, 4,372 tons d.w., owners AAT Shipinvest AS Norway, outward bound from Sharpness having sailed at 21.35 19th.

21/11 at 14.15 vehicle carrier Grande Napoli, 14,565 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury. At 14.25 bulk carrier Posidana, 54,106 tons d.w., owners Master Bulk Pte Ltd Singapore, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 08.27.

22/10 at 12.24 cargo vessel Pola Pelagia, 8,145 tons d.w., owners State Transport Leasing Co Russia, inward bound for Portbury.

21/11 at 05.41 vehicle carrier Grande Colonia, 12,292 tons d.w., owners Grimaldi Line of Italy, inward bound for Portbury. At 15.04 cargo vessel Scot Pioneer, 3,638 tons d.w., owners Scotline Line UK, inward bound for Newport. At 16.12 vehicle carrier Auto Eco, 16,995 tons d.w., owners United European Car Carriers Norway, outward bound from Portbury having sailed at 10.52. (This vessel uses LNG for propulsion purposes rather than fuel oil or diesel).

24/11 at 07.35 vehicle carrier Autostar, 6,670 tons d.w., owners United European Car Carrier Norway, inward bound for Portbury. At 15.38 cargo vessel Karen, 4,750 tons d.w., owners HS Karen OU Estonia, inward bound for Avonmouth. At 17.05 vehicle carrier Saic Anji Phoenix, 12,778 tons d.w., owners Anji Shipping Hong Kong Co Ltd China, inward bound for Portbury.

25/11 at 17.37 vehicle carrier Hoegh Pusan, 12,500 tons d.w., owners Hoegh Autolines Singapore, inward bound for Portbury.

26.11 at 0747 vehicle carrier Neptune Dynamis, 6,850 tons d.w., owners Dynamis Shipping Co Ltd Greece, inward bound for Portbury. At 07.55 container ship AS Paulina, 34,287 tons d.w., owners AS Paulina Opco BV Netherlands, inward bound for Portbury.

27/11 at 11.27 bulk carrier Nanac, 12,235 tons d.w., owners Nanac Shipping and Trading & Co Turkey, outward bound from Newport having sailed at 16.05 24th – had been at Avonmouth Anchorage awaiting orders and sailed 08.03 hrs 27th. At 15.05 deck-cargo vessel Topaz Amur, 2,969 tons d.w., owners Bue Bulkers ltd Kazakhstan, inward bound for Avonmouth – this vessel is well away from home waters and usually trades on the Russian river system and the Caspian Sea. At 15.25 tanker Levana, 14,999 tons d.w., owners Neunte Buttner Schiffahrts Germany, outward bound from Avonmouth having sailed at 01.34 26th

29/11 at 12.35 cargo vessel BBC Magellan, 6,264 tons d.w., owners Hullbalje Briese Schiffahrts Germany, inward bound for Newport.

As this is my last blog of the year may I take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year (Stay Virus free, Stay Safe).

Regards

Norman.

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Arts Society North Devon virtual events.

The Arts Society North Devon is continuing to deliver its outstanding lectures via Zoom. Enjoy top quality talks from the comfort of your home during the pandemic.

We are now offering membership up to May for £25, which represents excellent value for top quality monthly talks.

For more information visit tasnorthdevon.org.uk , contact the chairman on selman.smile@talktalk.net , or phone 01271 866661.

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The “Freshspring” project.

Steamship ‘Freshspring’ celebrates four years in Bideford.

During the Second World War, a fleet of freshwater-carrying steam ships was commissioned by the Royal Navy to deliver water to warships. These became the ‘Fresh’ class of ships and the last one to be built by Lytham Shipbuilders, in 1946, was named ‘Freshspring’. She served most of her time in Malta before being retired to the Clyde in the late 1970s, where she was decommissioned and mothballed.

While all of her sister ships were scrapped, ‘Freshspring’ was sold into civilian life and was towed to a new life in Bristol’s Floating Harbour. However, all did not go well and in the late 1980s she eventually ended up moored on the banks of the River Severn at Newnham where her machinery was kept in good order by her then owner, though externally she was deteriorating.

In 2012, a charitable trust was set up with the aim of saving ‘Freshspring’, and she was acquired by the Trust in 2013. Major funds for hull repairs were gained in 2016 and on 16th Oct 2016, SS ‘Freshspring’, towed by the tug ‘Severn Sea’, made her way down the Bristol Channel and up the Torridge to a new home in Bideford. It was an amazing journey, managed by a team classed as lunatics by experts for even attempting this remarkable project.

During her early days in Bideford, SS ‘Freshspring’ could not be opened to the public, as she needed further work. Volunteers stepped forward and achieved miracles with the ship, but some things needed funds. The wheelhouse and boat deck were rotten but the team persisted.

Four years later with Heritage Lottery Funding, local financial support and in the safe hands of the people of Bideford, SS ‘Freshspring’ is a very different ship.

Welcoming over 3,500 visitors during 2018/2019, The Trust’s 54 registered volunteers have been working hard to make sure that the visitor experience is truly memorable.

From 2017- 2019, the Steamship Freshspring Trust contributed over £18,000 to the local economy.

With its own brand of beer, sponsored and brewed in a local brewery, and a range of branded clothing, also supplied locally, the Trust is proud to cultivate maritime pride back into Bideford and be part of the community.

SS Freshspring is more than a steamship. She’s a place for volunteers to meet, learn new skills and have a sense of purpose. She’s a classroom for local schools where education involves hands-on activities and learning, she’s a venue for art classes, she helps young people to understand careers in maritime and has potential for so much more.


In recent months, Covid-19 has forced the Trust to review its ways of working. Confined spaces have made it impossible to safely open the ship to the public. However, a virtual reality tour, currently being created in partnership with BMT Global, will provide a valuable education resource and let the public tour the ship without leaving the comfort of the fore deck. This is a really exciting piece of work using cutting edge technologies. With the newly crowdfunded awning in place, tours won’t even be hampered by inclement weather!

The next challenge is to secure funding for two essential studies. Tenders are in for Feasibility and Viability studies and are ready to go. Once funds for this work are obtained, the Trust will learn exactly what needs to be done for SS ‘Freshspring’ to operate and become economically sustainable. These studies are pivotal pieces of work.

There are so many ways that you could help Freshspring, either from home or by helping on board. You are promised a warm welcome and a range of activities to choose from. Visit https://www.ssfreshspring.co.uk/get-involved/volunteering to find out more.

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Volunteers sought for “Home from Hospital”.

sophie@ttvs.org.uk

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Green Home Grants scheme.

On 8th July 2020 the Chancellor announced a £2 billion Green Home Grants Scheme to upgrade homes across England and make them more energy efficient. £1.5 billion of the total funding is to be made available through vouchers that can be put towards the cost of any improvements or upgrades. The scheme was launched with two goals in mind, with the first linked to addressing climate change and the UK Government’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050. The scheme is also part of a package of measures designed to kick-start the economy following the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, with local registered installers to benefit from the resulting demand for installations.

Under the scheme home owners and landlords in England can apply for a voucher towards the cost of installing energy efficient and low-carbon heating improvements to their homes. The voucher will cover up to two thirds of the cost of qualifying improvements to residents’ homes; up to a maximum voucher value of £5,000 (only one voucher is available per property). If people are on a low income and receive certain benefits they can receive a voucher covering all of the cost of improvements, up to a maximum voucher value of £10,000. Only certified installers are eligible to carry-out work on properties but local tradespeople are being encouraged to sign up to the accreditation scheme operated by TrustMark.

To be eligible to apply for the voucher, you must either:-

Own your own home (including park home owners, and long-lease holders and shared ownership).

Be a private or social landlord.

The scheme is not open to non-domestic properties or new-builds, and landlords cannot apply for the low-income portion of the scheme.

The Green Home Scheme will be time-limited to help stimulate the economic recovery, and support the creation nationally of tens of thousands of green jobs immediately. The scheme goes live on 30th September 2020, although people can check their eligibility and see what energy efficiency measures would suit their homes ahead of this date by using the Simple Energy Advice (SEA) toolkit, or visiting the government website for more information. Vouchers must be redeemed and improvements completed by 31st March 2021.

Torridge District Councillor Peter Hames, Lead Member for Climate Change, said: “Obviously the Green Home Grant scheme is very welcome in terms of the impact energy efficiency improvements can have on reducing carbon emissions and help us as a Country achieve our net-zero ambitions. But it will also help householders to save money in the long term and has the potential to be an important stimulus for our local economy which has obviously been affected by the recent Covid-19 crisis. In that respect I would also encourage local tradespeople to get registered now as an approved installer so that they can take advantage of the opportunities this scheme will hopefully generate.”

People should visit the Simple Energy Advice website to check eligibility, decide what measures to install and then contact an accredited tradesperson to get a quote: https://www.simpleenergyadvice.org.uk/pages/green-homes-grant Alternatively local tradespeople should register with TrustMark and can find out more by visiting: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/green-homes-grant-scheme-register-as-a-certified-tradesperson-or-business

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