⭐️ December Update

Dear Members and friends

Please READ below, there is quite a bit of important information and dates for your diaries at the end.

Meeting with Harbour Authority (HA)

On 2nd November, BBCA attended a meeting with the HA. Our invite to meet was aimed at developing positive relations. They agreed to our request for quarterly meetings going forward.

We raised a host of issues the community have had with signing new licences, with many clauses written such that it’s impossible not to breach the terms. HA acknowledged those concerns heard from boaters. As there were so many clauses to discuss we followed up with another meeting on 15th November. In preparation, BBCA collated the concerns our community had raised, emailing this to HA in advance. We asked for priority on the following clauses.

Leisure licence clauses – 1.11, 5.1, 5.3, 5.5.11, 5.5.13, 8.4.

Liveaboard Licence clauses- 1.13, 7.2, first schedule 1.1, 3.1, 13.5, 15, 16.7.

At the 15th November meeting, the HA presented slides of the above clauses, including BBCA’s comments on them & The Council’s response/outline of recommendations formed by their legal department. This has formed the basis of the appended ‘Letter of Clarity’ that BBCA have been able to obtain, which clarifies and resolves most of the clauses listed above to allow boaters to be comfortable with signing licences.

This Letter of Clarity will see us through this licence period and is a show of commitment from the HA, who feel that it’s too far gone to be amending and reissuing this year’s licence. HA confirmed that it is their intention to integrate the amendments into next year’s licences and continue to address the concerns of BBCA. HA gave assurances that licences are amendable annually and will be working with BBCA to make improvements for the community.

So hurrah! This is great progress. (Note from working group, if you like you can attach the letter of clarity to your returned licence to clarify those are the terms you are agreeing to)

HA have asked BBCA to encourage those who have not yet applied for a licence or who have not yet returned a signed copy of their licence along with the required documentation to respond by the 15th December 2023.

BBCA really appreciates your support to enable us to continue making outcomes like this.

Further: A pathway is being established to enable liveaboard boaters to obtain an address. More information on the steps to obtain those will follow.

Harbour Place Shaping Strategy

Taking place at Mshed 5th – 17th December at 10am –  5pm. Please drop in and add ideas and thoughts to their map, helping to create a Vision for Bristol Harbour that includes boats and their needs. The temporary exhibition explores the present and future of the harbour, it is important you have your say.

One of BBCA’s main focuses remains getting a seat on the table for the new ‘Harbour Committee advisory Board’, giving us ongoing positive influence.

Ideas to consider for individual boaters could include;

Boat maintenance moorings
Secure and safe accessible berths
Berths available with direct quayside vehicle access
Fair and decent facilities available in proximity to all moorings
Parking permits (for useful periods of time, longer than 30 mins)
Refurbished amenities blocks
Improvements to waste disposal
Bike storage
Environmental improvements
Increase in landing stages
Public toilets.
24/7 Harbour staff (available on site to deal with emergencies)
Regular and sufficient recyclable bins for boats

If you can’t make it to the exhibition, you can still have your say by adding your thoughts to the virtual ideas boards.

Bristol City Councils page for HPSS

Fundraiser on 11th Nov

A well attended fundraiser onboard the fantastic John Sebastian Lightship, the raffle raised £835! Thank you all for coming and continuing to support BBCA. List of raffle winners is attached to this communication, if you are one of the lucky winners then please can you arrange to collect your prize by contacting Phoebe @ the John Sebastian.

Dates for the diary

Christmas Carols 14th December

On board the John Sebastian starts at 7.30pm, all boat folk welcome, please come and share your support!

BBCA Christmas social 20th December

Onboard the John Sebastian on Wednesday from 7:30pm

Be great to see you there! All welcome!

Many thanks for your attention
The working group

Help Bristol’s Harbour Community Defend Democracy

Despite the narrative set in the Mayor’s recent blog post we continue to fight for what we believe is right- to receive the promised consultation. BBCA have followed further legal advice provided by the fundraising efforts of those who understand the importance of consultation to make informed decisions


We have since applied for an oral hearing to enable our legal representative to clearly present the strength in our case before a High Court Judge. Providing a further opportunity to challenge the Council’s decision in the courts by clearly laying out our pack of evidence.

BBCA continue to fundraise, the next event is held at John Sebastian Lightship for an evening of food and music on Friday 16th June, all are welcome.