Unloading Suntis on Gasworks Wharf

There are some historic names for the wharfs along the Ipswich waterfront as can be seen in this image:



What we now call Orwell Quay is actually three wharfs.  Anglo-Norden usually unloads Suntis on Eagle Wharf but, as I understand it, they have the right to unload at Gasworks Quay  as well. They don’t often do this as it is more complicated for them. I was told that they have to use Gasworks Quay occasionally to retain the right. I am not sure of the correctness of this but I have been told the story on a few occasions. We have been living on the Waterfront for six and a half years now and, in that time, they have only used this quay once.

On Saturday we noticed that the were putting out their large blocking units amongst the cars parked along under the balconies of Capstan House. We were worried that they were going to trying stop the parking there, as they have done on Eagle Wharf for some time. I worked out what was happening when Suntis came in and moored further down outside the Aurora.

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On Sunday, a notice appeared on each car warning that the vehicle should be moved as they would be “offloading a ship between 2nd and 4th December. Parking here will cause an obstruction. Please be advised that we will remove any vehicle that is causing an obstruction.”. By Monday morning there were only two cars left there and they seemed to have been ignored (see my note at the end of this).

Anyway, Monday dawned and off they went with one crane and fork lift trucks busily running back and forth. They had barricaded the whole of the waterfront so that pedestrians couldn’t get in the way.

This one was actually running backwards with its load.

This one was actually running backwards with its load. I had a chat with one of their staff, whose job, it seemed, was to direct pedestrians through the maze and he pretty much confirmed what I thought. Anyway, here is a shot of the activity taken on the Waterfront itself.

This is a view that we don’t normally get as the stern of Suntis is normally way down Helena Road and I can’t walk that far, unless I have my chair. I will add that the bollard with the cone seems to be stuck and hasn’t been dropped down for months. This has caused some issues for the fork lift trucks when manoeuvring with piles of wood (and for the funfair rides at the end of the Maritime weekend).

It was raining during the day so a shot from our window finishes off.

Just a final note to say that I was tempted to leave my car there with my blue badge showing. It is illegal to move or disable a parked car when showing a blue badge, no matter where it is parked – for obvious reasons. I would have loved it if they had towed my car away!

WWI – 100 years – Clarion Call

I am sitting here listening to the Clarion Call that is being played twice a day over the Waterfront and out to the town. This is an installation to commemorate women’s role in the First World War, which celebrates (??) the one hundredth anniversary of the end of that terrible conflict. The anniversary falls next Sunday when the ending of the war is marked at 11AM on 11th November (11th month).

Full details can be found on the SPILL Festival web site. That web site gives more details:

“Clarion Call stands as an ephemeral monument to the aftermath of wars past, present and future. But instead of unifying us in grief, a composition of reimagined melodies provide a moment in time for a community to come together in hope and reflection.”

It is quite eerie but, if you give it a little while for personal reflection, it is very moving.

Occasional Visitor – Pioneer CK18

Pioneer is an Essex fishing smack and comes into the Ipswich Marina on an occasional basis. You can read all about her on the Pioneer + web site.

It was a lovely morning this morning but the smack was in shadow caused by Capstan House so I had to wait as it passed slowly in the sunshine. It was worth the wait but, using my iPhone camera, it lost a bit of colour from the hull. Still, as that was the only camera on me, then at least I got the picture.


I love the little dinghy tied up to the stern. Although it has an outboard, it still has its mast in place.


Dutch Tall Ships Race

It’s that time of year again, when the Wet Dock fills up with tall ships – 21 this time. University students are the focus of this year’s crews rather than”young professionals” in previous years. It started with Artemis arriving. Then a quick look at FleetMon showed the Orwell full of ships coming into the Wet Dock.


I did my usual roll along the quays and took some random shots.

ships4ships3ships2ships 1gather 1

The crowds here are all of the crews having a chat and a drink. This took place on the Friday afternoon. Lucky that the weather was beautiful for the occasion.

I understand that complaints were raised about the noise levels on Thursday night and the Environmental Health had to ask them to tone it down. That’s a pity as it is only once a year and the noise was much less than the evenings of theMaritime Weekend or even of the Aurora on a summer Saturday night.

On the Friday afternoon there were some of the crews messing around on skateboards and a few working with drones. The wide expanse of the Wet Dock is ideal for such things. In fact, I caught a drone on camera when taking a photo of the new university car park, which has been turned into a giant marquee for graduation day.


On Saturday morning, on my jaunt to the local pharmacy, I took a photo of the board outside the Lightship. This might tempt a few of you to come and visit. I would like see the Pirate Radio exhibition if I could scramble abroad. Some of my favourite memories of the 60’s were”Kenny and Cash on London” – the jingle for Kenny Everett and Dave Cash on their afternoon show on Radio London – great stuff. I even remember some of their jokes, but not now.

Lastly, back to normal, because all of the Dutch boats went during the night leaving the Wet Dock nice and peaceful for Saturday – just when lots of Ipswich residents could come down to see them – shame. Nice to see Queen Galadriel is back in the marina, though.


Lightship LV18 arrives

Finally, and a few days later than expected, the Harwich Lightship LV18 arrived. It is going to be moored here in the Ipswich marina for some months as I understand it. It will be open to the public and there will be occasional light music aboard.

For more information on the arrival, the Ipswich Star covered the event. There is much more information about the lightship itself on its own web site.

lightship 3lightship 1lightship 4lightship 2

Lastly, as ever, a quick update on the Winerack. The outer covering is nearing completion. Also, there are lights on inside at night, so there is obviously much going on that we can’t see.

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Great East Run 2018

This is a half marathon run around Ipswich. One of the nice things about living on the Waterfront is that you get to see events like this without going too far from home. My wife and mother-in-law sat on the balcony to watch whilst I rode down to The Cult on my wheelchair with my trusty Canon 80D.

We had to family members running – our son-in-law, Matt Sims and our grandson Theo Sims. I managed to see Matt – well to be clear, Matt saw me and called out. In my defence there were a lot of runners going through and I was trying to take some photos.

First off came the lead vehicle with the time.

lead vehicle ger

This was closely followed by the first runners.

early birds

Not too long after, there was a large body of entrantsnice group

This included Matt. I nearly missed him. I was too busy saying hello to take a picture.

Matt GER.jpeg

On my way back home, I stopped off at the Aurora. They were running through in every way possible.

ger aurora

Now that I had my good camera with me, I thought that I would give an update on the Winerack. Work is progressing apace.

winerack ger.jpg

Lastly, and I am sorry to keep on, but with all that is going on around the Waterfront, there is a need for more parking but this one is firmly closed at the weekend. Shame!!!

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