Topic: Wanted hire boat over new year

Chriskarl22    -- Nov-22-2015 @ 10:36 PM
  Hi, I've been to the broads numerous times over the past 5 or 6 years but nearly always in season. It occurred to me and my partner that it would be nice to spend new year on a boat as a second holiday as out of season it is usually quite cheap. Unfortunately I cannot find any small boats for hire only those for 6-10 people. A few years ago out of season we hired a small 4 person boat for £50 per night from Ludham Bridge which was very reasonable but they do not appear to hire anymore. Does anyone know where I could hire a small boat from the 28/12/15 to the 01/01/16 as most big yards seem to close over winter. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thankyou

boat-mad    -- Nov-23-2015 @ 9:04 AM
  You could try Freedom Boats by clicking Here Cheers

Kind Regards

This message was edited by boat-mad on Nov-23-15 @ 9:07 AM

BobtheBoater    -- Nov-23-2015 @ 9:34 AM
  Hi there, NBD (norfolk broads direct) defiantly hire over xmas and new year, i think you may struggle to find any alternatives other than a cottage or lodge riverside. We looked into possibilities, even having an amazing relationship with our usual yard drew a blank so ended up booking with NBD not cheap but an amazing experience.

Chriskarl22    -- Nov-23-2015 @ 8:19 PM
  Thankyou for the responses, I shall look into both yards. Such a shame more yards are not open all year I much prefer the broads when they are quiet, Im even fond of the cold somewhat but maybe I am just strange.

Richard    -- Nov-23-2015 @ 8:38 PM
  If you click on the Hoseasons banner at the top of the page you might find something

ruby    -- Nov-24-2015 @ 11:18 AM
  Hi  good luck with your search.

A factor worth bearing in mind is that we have had a few very mild winters recently and to some extent have been lulled into forgetting what winter can be like.

Up until quite recently more hire yards sent boats out throughout the year but a series of bad years caused s major rethink.

Floods mean boats can't move, ice means boats can't move both  creating disgruntled customers. Both are also dangerous conditions which means a hike in the hire yard insurance premiums , not to mention water systems bursting and engines seizing both requiring call out in unfavourable conditions.

Finally river heights alter which means many boats got stuck the wrong side of bridges they would normally get through with ease.

I am pretty certain the yacht stations and the bridge pilots also shut down for the winter but I might be imagining that.

The yards would also have to stay staffed  open to allow the reciprocal mooring arrangement to operate when the chances are very few boats are actually on the water.

Like you I enjoy the winter months  but I wouldn't fancy spending my whole week in minus five conditions and not being able to move .

Have fun


DaveHR    -- Nov-24-2015 @ 3:44 PM
  The Met Office are also forecasting a severe winter, maybe the worse for several years with temperatures down to - possibly - minus 15oC.
It's all down to a dramatic increase in the effects of El Niño.


Chriskarl22    -- Nov-24-2015 @ 6:47 PM
  Ok thankyou for the insight,  looks like ill have to wait untill spring.  

Exile    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 1:24 AM
  " The Met Office are also forecasting a severe winter, maybe the worse for several years with temperatures down to - possibly - minus 15oC.
It's all down to a dramatic increase in the effects of El Niño. "

Given their past record in longer term forecasts (non appearing BBQ summers and the like) I would not base my decision on the Met Office rune reading.

Harrietbrandon    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 6:44 AM
  Me neither. I'm sure Faircraft Loynes would hire to you. Why not ring them and have a chat about it. You've nothing to lose.


daz3210    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 9:09 AM
  Have we not had bad winters forecast for the last few years though?

ruby    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 9:44 AM

However I think it would be a brave hire company which assumes these mild winters are going to stay.

daz3210    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 10:27 AM
  Maybe brave is one way of putting it.

But realistically, if the hirer was briefed, and followed instructions, would there really be a big problem?

Harrietbrandon    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 11:27 AM


ruby    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 11:34 AM
  I think the thing is in the past there were big problems. Hire boats of ten or twenty  years ago were not built with much insulation and it is quite easy for water systems to freeze and burst when it never gets above minus five or the like.

It was only four  years ago that Norfolk saw its first snow in November and it did not disappear until March.

Not sure it ever got much above freezing during that time.

For it to be practical think the boats would need to be built to a winter spec and hirers would also need to be prepared to convert to a houseboat holiday if the water flows became too dangerous


daz3210    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 11:46 AM
  There are three issues that I can see.

1. Domestic water freezing
2. Engine cooling system freezing
3. Frozen waterways.

Could 1 & 2 be addressed by lagging and heating on the boat?

Frozen waterways, depending how bad mean boats can't move.

Like I said above, common sense and good instruction surely could address issues.

Since there is less demand during winter, only some boats need a winter spec do they not?

One of the things I like is early morning cruising when you have the river almost to yourself. I imagine the Broads in winter are like that all the time with even better scenery.

ruby    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 12:49 PM
  Yes I agree but I don't know if there is a real demand ? Or enough to build specialised more expensive hire boats , I am not so sure.

Yesterday there were no boats moored at coltishall, potter, Womack or Ludham bridge. Can't say that very often in the summer.

Didn't see any boats moving either so your assessment of tranquility is spot on

Have fun


Steve51    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 5:54 PM
  I don't see a problem. I use my boat all year round and have only been frozen in twice in over 15 years. A little bit of common sense is all that's needed. If the forecast says it's going to be minus whatever, stick to the main rivers and avoid the "dead ends" like Sutton, Womack, Neatishead and so on.

The biggest hazards to be mindful of are decks and quay headings, which can be dangerous when frozen.

Happy winter cruising!  Smile

Steve. CM1 and NR12

daz3210    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 7:19 PM
  Is there any danger to the hull by being frozen in?

Or is the ice we get in this country not thick and heavy enough?

Steve51    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 7:33 PM
  There must be thousands of boats around the country that get frozen in every year. I've never heard of a hull being crushed. Obviously it would be sensible not to move the boat in anything other than a paper thin film of ice.

Steve. CM1 and NR12

steve    -- Nov-25-2015 @ 8:48 PM
  Hi all ,
Think a few of us here who keep our boats in and around the stalham / Sutton area know and have seen these reaches of the ant do suffer bad during the winter , with ice / frozen over water , which does last a few weeks , think one year it lasted 6/7 weeks where it was that cold , somewhere way back here in vaults there was pictures at ranworth where it was completely iced over , and snowed heavy , few boats were stuck for a day or two , I believe a pole and mud weight was used to smash a way through and a route access for the boats to follow behind ,

steve and vicky

spiderman    -- Nov-26-2015 @ 8:28 AM
  Wrap up warm and get out there!

Dzign    -- Nov-26-2015 @ 2:09 PM
  The syndicate boats are used all year round apart from a maintenance period of 2 weeks each year, I had a share for 12 years and can't remember any problems, a lot of the owners cruise for a day or two and return to their own moorings for a night then venture out again, an electric hook up is pretty much a must but there are plenty available in the winter, so there is really no good reason not to hire if you get a suitable boat..


TerryTibbs    -- Nov-26-2015 @ 2:23 PM
  Depends how flexible you are, if you don't mind being stuck in one spot if the river/broad freezes then there is no problem because moving a boat through ice can cause significant damage to the gell coat. I have seen people cruising very slowly throwing the mud weight in front of the boat to break the ice but this is not entirely satisfactory and it is no fun as well as being some what dangerous. Of course cruising on a sharp crispy Winters day if the river is clear is a joy.

Dave Cheers

Liberté, égalité, fraternité

Harrietbrandon    -- Nov-26-2015 @ 3:31 PM
  I think Steve51 made a good point in that you are fine if you keep the main rivers. The 'dead end's such as Ranworth, Sutton, Stalham etc may freeze if it's very cold but keeping on the main rivers particularly when mooring at night would seem to be the best approach to avoid any risk of being frozen in.


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