Salcombe Harbour Photography Competition Gallery

The first annual Salcombe Harbour photography competition has now closed and judging is well underway.

The competition winner will receive a canvas print of their winning shot, a cash prize and to become a character in our Estuarine Escapade comic strip.

See all of the entries for the 2016 Photography Competition here.

Salcombe Harbour Photography Competition Gallery

Closing date for entries is 9 September 2016 and if you have a photograph that captures your connection with Salcombe Harbour then you can submit it here.

Photography Competition

Our 2016 Photography Competition has closed

We have launched a photography competition to capture your connection with Salcombe Harbour. Entrants are being asked to send in their best photos of activities, wildlife or landscapes in, on or around the Salcombe-Kingsbridge Estuary.

The photos, which can be taken at any time of the year, should best reflect what Salcombe Harbour means to them.

Salcombe Harbour is a popular recreational and leisure port situated within the South Hams Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty renowned for its intrinsic beauty, character and diversity of wildlife. It was designated an eco-port in 2014.

Adam Parnell the Harbour Master said “The Harbour is an amazingly beautiful location enjoyed by thousands of residents and visitors alike and we want to encourage even more people to discover and enjoy all that the Harbour has to offer.”

The competition is free to enter and the winner will receive a large canvas print of their photograph, a small cash prize and the chance to be immortalised in the ‘Estuarine Escapades’ cartoon strip published on the Harbour Website.

The winning image will also be published in our publications and on a variety of social media websites, so the winner will also have the pleasure of having their creativity widely recognised. This is an exciting opportunity to showcase your skills and possibly kick start your career as a photographer!

The competition is open until 9 September 2016 and details of how to apply and full Terms and Conditions are available here.

If you’d like to see the current entries then have a look at the Competition Gallery

Consultation starts on Harbour’s 2017-2022 Strategic Business Plan

Salcombe Harbour welcomes consultation feedback

Salcombe Harbour is beginning a consultation on its draft 2017-2022 Strategic Business Plan. This is being done over the busy summer period to capture feedback from residents and visitors alike.

The Harbour Board wants to meet evolving expectations and needs of Harbour users and they are proposing an ambitious 5-year plan. This will ensure that the  Harbour is a safe, efficient and sustainable modern eco-harbour that that meets the needs and expectations of 21st century Harbour users while maintaining its unspoiled and naturally beautiful character.

Key deliverables:

– Transform Salcombe Harbour into an eco-harbour. The Authority intends to transform Salcombe into a truly sustainable eco-harbour that represents a model for other harbours to adopt.

– Improve navigational safety. The Authority wants to widen the navigable channel in ‘the Bag’ by replacing some swinging moorings with deep water pontoons close to the old houseboat moorings.

– Adapt to changes in visitor patterns. The number of visitors arriving by sea is slowly reducing, but more are choosing to launch their boat from a slipway inside the Harbour. We are improving the maintenance and operational management of slipways to ease congestion during busy periods, and investigating better ways to store visitors’ road trailers.

– Support a thriving local community. Establishing Kingsbridge as a maritime destination, supporting a thriving shell fishing industry and raising environmental awareness are key priorities.

– Employ an engaged and dedicated staff. Our reputation comes from our staff’s dedication and commitment. We will recognise and reward their skills and experience with career-enhancing qualifications.

Consultation period open until 2 September

The Harbour Authority welcomes feedback by post or online. The consultation period closes on 2 September 2016.



DRAFT Strategic Business Plan 17-22

Marine flare amnesty proposed

Do you have out of date marine flares you want to dispose of for free?

Mariners know that marine flares should be part of their boat’s safety kit, and while these can be bought from a number of stockists, disposal of out of date flares (known as Time Expired Pyrotechnics, or TEPs) can prove more problematic. The regulations have become more stringent and make it an offence to dump TEPs at sea or to fire them as fireworks, and placing them in the general rubbish puts the waste collectors or even the ‘bin lorry’ in danger if they explode or catch alight.

Unfortunately there isn’t anywhere locally for individuals to return out of date flares – the closest place is Falmouth Coastguard, but only by appointment – so Salcombe Harbour Authority is proposing to co-host a ‘flare amnesty’ with a commercial company which specialises in their collection and safe disposal.

This won’t cost Harbour users a penny as the Authority intends to absorb all of the costs, but they would like to gauge the local demand to ensure that the appropriate facilities are booked, as Harbour Master Adam Parnell explained: “We want to run a free event for Harbour users as part of our ‘Safe Salcombe’ campaign, but we need to know in advance if we’re talking 10s or 1000s of flares to make sure that we can cope with the demand.”

The event will be run later in the summer, and anyone who would like to use such a service is encouraged to register with the Salcombe Harbour Office using the form below so that they can be contacted before the event, but please do NOT bring your marine flares to the office until then.

Flare Amnesty Registration Form

Your First Name (required)

Your Surname (required)

Your Email (required)

Amount of flares to dispose

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Further details and guidance on Time Expired Pyrotechnics can be found at the Maritime and Coastguard Agency web site here:

BBQs at The Millbrook Inn during July

It’s a sure sign that summer has arrived when confidence in the weather is strong enough to schedule in BBQs and that’s just what Charlie and Tess, the new owners of The Millbrook Inn, have done.

BBQs at The Millbrook Inn

Why not nip across to welcome them and enjoy some local produce at the same time?

Don’t forget that if you’re a local business and you’d like to promote an event on our website then you can by visiting our Add an Event page.

Salcombe Harbour User Survey

Take part in our User survey!

Salcombe Harbour has partnered with Plymouth University’s Faculty of Science and Engineering to undertake a survey on harbour users’ views and attitudes towards the harbour environment. We would like to invite you to participate in this short survey in order for us to understand what the harbour means to you and your awareness to the environment.

This survey should take no longer than 5 minutes to complete. Your responses will remain confidential. The survey is open until 24th April 2016.

Please click the link to start the survey (opens in a new window): The survey

We appreciate your time!

Why are we doing this?

The Salcombe-Kingsbridge Estuary contains some rare and important species. With limited freshwater inputs from small streams, the Estuary is predominantly tidal, creating a unique marine eco-system. The uniqueness of the estuary has led to its designation as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), as well as being a Local Nature Reserve (LNR) and also a part of the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). Within the Estuary there are eelgrass beds, reed beds and mudflats which support a rich and diverse wildlife, providing nursery and feeding grounds to a number of species such as seahorses, shellfish and birds, and larger animals like seals and basking sharks (South Devon AONB, 2016). It is important that the estuary is protected and maintained in order to safeguard both natural and human health.


Salcombe Harbour is a very popular destination in the South West for boating and recreational activities, with peak visits during the summer months (between June and August). Due to the amount of human activity around the area, the harbour could be prone to pollution. Additionally, a recent improvement of the sewer system at Salcombe to alleviate floods should hopefully alleviate drainage of surface water runoff, diverting it away from the sewerage system into newly constructed surface water drains (South West Water, 2016). This means any pollution of surface water and substances down the drain will potentially go directly into the harbour!

Estuarine Escapades – The lighter way to stay safe

Estuarine Escapades is our new regular comic strip, created by Nick Brennan of Cartoon Fun, to help us convey important safety messages in a light hearted way.

Estuarine Escapades comic strip

We want everyone to enjoy their time around and on our Estuary and the best way to do this is to keep safe by following some CLEAR rules:

  • Communication – ensure that you have at least one means of communication with shore in case of an emergency
  • Lifejacket – or other suitable personal flotation device for each person (and dog!)
  • Equipment – check that the boat and all its equipment are in place and ready to go
  • Able – have a plan, know where you are heading and how to get there safely
  • Ready – be ready to have fun on the water!

You can receive Estuarine Escapades straight to your inbox if you Subscribe to our newsletter. Don’t forget to keep coming back to our website for the next Estuarine Escapades cartoon soon!


Dredging of Salcombe estuary to start soon

Dredging campaign could start as early as 21 Jan

Van Oord, who were awarded the contract to undertake maintenance dredging of parts of Salcombe estuary following a competitive tendering process, have confirmed that they could start the dredging campaign as soon as 21st January when their newest dredging vessel BORR completes its current tasking elsewhere. This date is of course weather dependent and may slip a few days if poor weather is encountered between now and then.

The type of dredging to be undertaken is known as Water Injection Dredging; water is used to lift the sediment from the estuary floor so that the tides and other natural forces can disperse it over a wider area. Comprehensive computer modelling – the accuracy of which was proven during the last dredge which took place in 2011 – estimates that at worst case, the estuary floor in non-dredged areas will rise by less than 3-10 cm. This means that navigation in the non-dredged areas won’t be adversely affected, whereas safety of navigation in the main (dredged) areas will be significantly improved.

Dredging areas

The areas to be dredged include the Kingsbridge basin, an area around Lincombe Boatyard and several areas in and around Salcombe. These include the slipway and pontoons in Batson Creek, the Fish Quay and the channel from there to Salcombe and the Normandy, Whitestrand and RNLI lifeboat pontoons. Over 10,000 cubic metres of silt – equivalent to approximately 4 Olympic sized swimming pools – will be dredged over a number of outgoing tides. The scheduled length of the campaign is between 1-2 weeks in total, weather permitting.

The silting of the estuary is itself a natural phenomenon caused by run-off from surrounding countryside, and the harbour is regularly surveyed to judge where and when dredging is necessary; at the moment this is about every 5 years.

Impact on harbour users and the environment

The dredging campaign has been carefully planned and timed to cause minimum disruption to both harbour users and the environment. The biggest impact will be the need to temporarily move both vessels and pontoons off their pilings in the Kingsbridge Basin. This may limit individuals’ access to their boats during the 2-3 days that dredging occurs in Kingsbridge, but the Harbour Staff will make sure that everything is put back as it was.

Dredging vessel BORR

The BORR is a road-transportable dredger which is broken down for movement and re-assembled on site. It is approximately 19m long and 5m wide. Further details about the BORR can be found on the Van Oord website (note: SHA are not responsible for external content).


Salcombe Harbour to go Solar

Solar Panels to be installed at Salcombe Harbour Workshop

In the New Year the South Hams District Council will install solar PV panels on the roof of the Salcombe Harbour workshop in Island Square, Salcombe. These will generate a renewable source of electrical energy to meet the workshop’s needs, and will also feed unused ‘surplus’ sustainable energy into the national grid, thereby potentially providing ‘green’ energy to the local electrical infrastructure, too.

After a competitive tendering process  – to ensure best value for money for Council Tax payers – preferred contractor status has been determined and contracts will be signed in the New Year before the work starts immediately afterward.

The solar PV panels are expected to generate up to 11,500kWh of energy throughout each one of their projected 25 years of serviceable life, saving approximately 36,250 tonnes of Carbon during that time when compared to conventional (non renewable) energy sources such as oil or gas fired power stations. Moreover, the Council expects to recoup the installation costs within 5 years, meaning that it will make significant savings on its future energy bills, thereby benefitting Council Tax payers as well.

Salcombe: The Eco Harbour

This scheme perfectly complements the harbour’s eco-port status which was granted to it in 2014 by the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO) and will enable the Harbour Authority to pursue its aspiration to convert one of its water taxis to run on solar-charged batteries (announced in News, 23rd October). This is only one of several eco-initiatives being planned by the Harbour Authority; others include greater monitoring of water quality, actively lifting unwanted mooring blocks from the quieter Creeks to return them to a more natural state, incentivising yachts to avoid ‘pumping out’ in the harbour and reducing energy use.