The following is a copy of a series of emails between myself and SPP HM. I never did get a proper answer. Especially his comment "quite why he waits 2 weeks before raising it is a bit of a mystery".
Still leaves me feeling annoyed.
I raised the issue with the marina office at the time of the incident.
I waited 2 weeks to send the email as I was still cruising and did not return home till last week!! At which time I could then download the photos from my camera. Hopefully that resolves your HMs mystery........
On 6 Sep 2010, at 14:43, "Galliott, Michael" <Michael.Galliott@gov.gg> wrote:
Dear Mr N
The harbour master has asked that I reply on his behalf, I was sorry to hear of your unfortunate experience when returning to St Peter Port on the 18th August.
We will be making further enquires reference this incident, but unfortunately to date the marina attendant with the unhelpful attitude has yet to come forward.
For your information I will be on the CI stand at the “Southampton Boat show” from the 10th-13th September followed by the marina manager until the end of the show, and I look forward to meeting with yourself if you are attending the show.
From: Gill, Peter
Sent: 03 September 2010 13:36
To: Galliott, Michael; Gaudion, Mike; Trebert, Graham
Subject: FW: EOS
Can one of you guys look into this please.
Quite why he waits two weeks before raising it is a bit of a mystery.
Sent: 03 September 2010 13:27
To: Gill, Peter
Dear Captain Gill
We spent many days in St Peter Port last month on the outer pontoons. We were generally impressed by the cheerfulness and helpful attitude of your staff.
Unfortunately there was one occasion when we were left feeling very agrieved. We returned from Jersey on Weds 18th August at approx 15.30 and found a berth alongside a pontoon. We have a 13.8m motorboat. Shortly after we had secured ourslves we saw a larger old ex racing boat entering the harbour which we recognised as being berthed ahead of us in St Helier. This boat was at least 20' longer than us. Before we knew it we were being hailed by one of your HM boats telling us he was putting this boat alonside us. We did not have time to re-rig our outside fenders before this boat hit us! I protested loudly that it was a totally unsuitable boat to raft alongside us as his toe rail was higher than out handrails and he had no effective fenders set. We were told he was coming alongside regardless. This was witnessed by other people on the pontoon who fortunately saw what was happening and could see that I and my partner could not push a 68'+ boat off by ourselves after it had hit us and caused my bulwarks to flex to such an extent that I thought they would fracture.
We soon had about 10 men on board helping to push off the French boat whilst we set fenders at an appropriate height, which was difficult due to our difference in size. Luckily we do not appear to have suffered any permanent damage but it certainly spoilt my day. The attitude of the HM assistant was one of almost disdain; he could see no problem in rafting up a 68' aluminium sailing boat against a 13.8m motorboat. He stated on several occasions that he could not be held responsible for the sailing boat being effectively unfendered and then hitting us. He also stated there was nowhere else to put the sailing vessel which I find somewhat hard to believe.
I have attached several photos showing the incompatability of rafting a much larger aluminium sailing boat outside a smaller GRP motor boat. The 2 do not mix! In 30 years of boating I have never seen a boat almost 50% longer being rafted on the outside of a smaller vessel. Indeed all the crews of the other boats on the pontoon made similar comments to us and your HM assistant. I spoke to someone callede Jamie in the marina office and his comment was that he would not have made the same decision to raft the sailing boat alongside us.,
When we came to leave the next day I requested assistance from the marina office as my 5' 2" tall partner could not possibly push a 68' boat off by herself whilst also attending to our lines. We were told that someone would be over to assist in 10 minutes. 25 minutes later no-one had appeared. Luckily the same crews off the other boats were on hand to help and we eventually slipped out without further incident.
The whole episode leaves a bitter taste, particularly the attitude of your HM assistant and the cavalier attitude of the French skipper who just laughed when he saw the problems he was causing. The former is hopefully something you can do something about, the latter is of course outside of your control. I shudder to think what damage we would have found if we had not been aboard when this boat attempted to raft against us! I do hope you take this up with your staff and it helps to prevent anything similar happening again.