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July August 2019 Marina World

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MARINA REFURBISHMENT English marina secures green light for change Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour, winner of this year’s TYHA Coastal Marina of the Year award* (under 250 berths), is an idyllic English marina located in one of the few privately-owned estuaries in the world. Opened in 1971 and largely unchanged since 1980, it has recently been subject to a £400,000 investment for an upgraded facilities building and has now secured planning permission and a marine licence for reconfiguration and extension. Being on the doorstep of an 18 th century shipbuilding village in the heart of the picturesque and sensitive habitat of the New Forest National Park creates challenges when change is required. The marina owners Beaulieu Estate (Beaulieu Enterprises – BEL) appointed Marina Projects for advice on the redevelopment. The initial scope of work included analysis of the local and wider market, historic activity trends, a detailed review of the site constraints, development of concept design options and the development of the business case. Marina Projects then put together a detailed consent strategy and assisted in the stakeholder consultation process. Russell Bowman, managing director at BEL, explains the aim: “We are investing in the future of the marina whilst seeking to reconfigure the facility and offer increased availability of walkashore berths and an enhanced level of customer service. It is imperative to us that we preserve the character which makes Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour so special.” Mike Ward, managing director of Marina Projects, adds details: “Since the marina opened in 1971 it has remained largely the same, which is why the changes are necessary to meet modern boating demands and offer the right size and type of berths for modern vessels. Most notably, the increasing beam The Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour team, proud recipients of a Coastal Marina of the Year award. The Beaulieu (pronounced Bewlee) River, owned by the Beaulieu Estate and set amidst quintessential English countryside, is home to Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour. The marina is preparing for sensitive expansion. of modern vessels has led to a revised berth mix with berth sizes generally between 8m [26ft] and 20m [66ft]. Over 70% will be between 8 and 12m [26 and 39ft] in length.” The existing pontoon system is in remarkably good condition and the reconfigured design has sought to incorporate the significant majority of the existing pontoon equipment, which will be subject to a major refurbishment, including full replacement of all deck boards, fendering and duct cover, Ward confirms. There will be a mix of new and reused hardwood timber piles. New access bridges, utilities and additional new pontoon equipment will complete the installation. Approximately 60 additional berths will be provided, along with improved provision of walk-ashore visitor berthing. The marina is located on a significant meander in the river and this provides challenges with respect to the orientation and geometry of fairways if use of water area is to be optimised. The planned expansion is achieved by careful design and by making the best use of the existing deep water and rationalising the alignment of the main channel. Modelling of the tidal flows on the river ensures that the orientation of the berths is sensitively designed. Buckler’s Hard Yacht Harbour is a very popular destination with up to 7,500 visiting vessels annually. Substantial numbers of vessels moor up at weekends and in the high season. As a consequence, a significant degree of rafting of vessels occurs during peak periods and the constrained water depth in some areas, together with tidal www.marinaworld.com - July/August 2019 23

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